Over two billion people in the developing world live on less than $2.50 a day. The World Health Organization estimates that there are 35 million people who need prosthetic or assistive devices. Unfortunately, many of these people are not able to afford traditional prosthetic legs due to poverty and the high cost of materials, which ranges in the thousands of dollars. Hope to Walk has designed below-knee and above-knee prosthetic legs that cost less than $100 and $200. To meet this incredible need we partner with missionary clinics across the globe and equip locals to manufacture and fit our prosthetics, allowing us to “Give the Gift of Walking” to as many people as possible. When you join our efforts, you give the world’s poor the opportunity to walk, support their families, and lead productive lives.
Jesus commanded us to love one another. He often taught this by meeting the needs of others in a tangible manner. Hope To Walk was founded by followers of Jesus Christ to be a practical demonstration of love for the world.
Hope to Walk brings hope and a future to amputee patients in developing nations by designing low-cost prosthetics and training local providers to manufacture and deliver them.
Eliminate the scourge of amputation disability from the face of the earth.
A simple, sustainable, and transferable solution is needed for this problem, as it affects millions. Our solution is to develop “Hope Centers” in each nation where local medical and support staff will facilitate all aspects of prosthetic care. The key aspects of care are prosthetic manufacturing, fitting, and post-prostheses care for our patients. Hope Centers will be partnered with full service medical clinics that are able to provide full medical services when the HTW team is not present.
Our core belief is that each person on earth has innate value because they were created by a loving Creator. We seek to love our neighbors as ourselves regardless of race, religion, sex, or other distinguishing factors. We demonstrate our love as follower of Jesus Christ by making low cost prosthetic legs available to the world. We will build an effective and sustainable model of prosthetic care that will address the need for affordable prosthetics. We will accomplish this by partnering with missionary clinics and groups that share our vision of serving the poor.
Hope to walk is focusing its efforts in Honduras to create a model of prosthetic care that can then be transferred to other countries in the region and around the world. We have partner organizations that are researching the need around the world (Central America, Africa, Asia, etc.) and when we’re able, we will be expanding to those countries/continents and beyond.
The founders of Hope to Walk wanted every dollar possible to benefit the most people. Thus, virtually all donations go to purchasing prosthetic materials, research and development, and travel costs. There are no paid staff and board members never receive compensations for sitting on the board. Once we are able to bring on staff, we’ll be publishing our cost ratios in full transparency.
Our “Hope Center” model empowers the local doctors and medical staff at each location to register the patient, do an initial health assessment, and determine if the patient is able to use a prosthetic device. Once that has been determined, they are entered into our database and await a team to do the final assessment before being fitted with a leg. Our waiting list is 300+ in the Tegucigalpa area alone.
We plan to take 5-6 trips a year in order to successfully train local medical teams, beginning in Honduras, to be self-sufficient. Once trained, Hope to Walk will take less trips to that location and take additional trips into new areas so we can focus on expanding to serve additional countries.
Because of our prosthetic designs and techniques, we are generally able to give between 10 to 20 on each trip.
We are open to it, but at the current time our focus revolves around optimizing our prosthetic leg designs. We hope to partner with other organizations to fund development of other devices in the future.
No. As long as the local medical team makes a prior determination that the patient is able to stand on their other leg confidently, they do not have medical conditions which prohibit the use of a prosthetic device, and the gift of a leg will not put them in harm’s way, they qualify.
Yes the patient’s amputation must be compatible with our device. Hope to Walk has an above knee and below knee prosthesis. The “frugal” design is standardized. Even in developed countries, some amputations require specially designed sockets depending on the cause of amputation and the quality of the surgery that the patient received. There have been a few cases where we needed to raise money to be able to build special sockets for patients as their stump had various issues.
We are currently developing these processes. An important component is Physical Therapy (PT). Our desire is to make PT available to all of our patients. We also hope to develop a prosthetic user network in each area so current users can support new users.
A key part of our mission is partnering with existing hospitals and clinics so the prosthetic user always has the medical care and counsel needed to deal with any issues. We are in constant communication with these clinics to address any needs as they arise.
Yes. We have started working with a local PT school in Tegucigalpa and some of their students. This is in the development stages. We hope to continue this model of including PT in other countries as well.
Yes! To teach and empower the locals to consistently care for the changing needs of the patient is part of the model. Each person’s stump will change over time and will need consistent care to continue walking. We will be pursuing grants to fund the development of an affordable and extendable children’s “Insta-Leg” to help the specific problem of children needing so many legs over the course of their lifetime.
On each trip, the local administrators schedule our current users to come to the location where we assess, repair or replace the prosthetics as needed.
Funding and personnel. We need the right organizations and volunteers to partner with us, so that we can develop our technologies and deliver our “Frugal, Simple, Transferable” model to additional nations. Finally, we need to steward the addition of staff to fill roles that volunteers cannot fill.
Both. We hope to develop consistent giving from a large donor base as well as corporate / medical / organization sponsors.
The Executive Director and Head Prosthetist in conjunction with other staff.
Baxter Institute (4yr Missionary School and Clinic) – Honduras
Hospital Evangelico – Honduras
Samaritan’s Feet – Charlotte, NC
SIM – Charlotte, NC
Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine – Virginia, VA
Rotary Clubs – Blacksburg, VA, Charlotte, NC, Tegucigalpa, Honduras
At current, there are volunteers as well as paid staff when they travel or perform R&D.
As we gain significant funding, the HTW Board will be implementing financial accountability outside of the organization to audit and certify our responsible use of all funds utilized by the organization. Our book keeping is currently done by an independent company that volunteers its services. They provide this service so that they can impact the world while insuring complete financial transparency and the stewardship of our finances.
We seek out and work with missionary clinics and groups serving the poor to join us at each location so when we’re not present, the relationships continue. The six month wound care and physical therapy process allows time for meaningful relationships to form which promote the healing of body, soul, and spirit.
The founders are followers of Jesus who saw a need and took action. The board developed a guiding principle document of what is expected of a board member and was made part of our guidelines. Faith in Jesus Christ and living a life exemplary of a follower of Jesus is paramount. The senior staff member will be expected to meet the same expectations as board members. Staff and volunteers will be expected to resonate with and demonstrate our Mission, Vision and Core Values. Staff and volunteers are expected to respect the cultural norms and expectations of our overseas partners. Our core values are based on biblical principles and our belief that people have intrinsic value and are worthy of our time and love.
There are also many people in need of prosthetic devices in developed nations as well due to the same reasons – poverty and high costs. We hope to make our leg technology available to people in developed nations as well, once our prosthetic technology is documented as effective, safe, and comparable to standard of care. Further technology development and many regulation/legal areas need to be explored and traversed. These issues are significant and there are legitimate reasons prosthetics are so expensive in the US. If we sell devices in the developed world it would be for the express purpose of helping to fund a portion of our work in the developing world.
Once we are at a more mature place in our development and have proven the concept of our Hope Center pilot project in Honduras, we will to work with Public Relations firms to share the accomplishments and potential of our prosthetic model for the poor throughout the world.
Currently you can contact HTW by email or phone to let us know of your interest in helping people walk by being trained as a HTW certified prosthetic technician. Soon, we’ll have a portal on our website where you can sign up for classes and follow a schedule of online reading and videos, classroom time and final training in the field. The cost to become certified will vary depending on your location and previous experience.
We encourage ministries to utilize the vast potential of showing the love of God to a hurting and dying world through HTW prosthetics. Contact us via phone or email to discuss how your ministry might benefit by adding prosthetics to the poor as part of your work in the field.