Cupcakes, empty bottles and new initiatives for a bus

Cupcake sale Herenhof
On Saturday, February 1, there was a second time cupcake sale. This time in the Herenhof shopping center in Alphen aan den Rijn (NL), in front of the entrance of Alebrt Heijn supermarket. It was an exciting day because this time we had over 1,000 cupcakes to sell, 400 more than last time. Would that work? This time the students of the Groene Hart Leerpark school had baked all 1,000 cupcakes! Sjaak, the teacher in the bakery, made the cupcakes with several classes, baked them and then decorated them. What an achievement. Albert Heijn de Herenhof had sponsored all ingredients this time. Thank you!

At 10 o’clock, we created a beautiful stand with many posters attached, on the windows, on the sliding doors and at the entrance. There was a table next to the stand and a standing table with cupcakes on the other entrance. Supermarket manager Jeroen had put a lot of effort into the store itself: at the entrance there were many posters about Tim, at every cash register, at the service desk and in the store itself. The whole day, there were announcements with: “Help Tim with a new wheelchair bus: this Saturday cupcake sale with the help of lots of volunteers.” Today, the empty bottle deposit action was for Tim and had been running there for a month. We got so much help from friends and acquaintances to help with sales that we could start a sales desk in the supermarket, so that we could also sell cupcakes here. Awesome!

And here we go! During the sale, Jeroen from the supermarket surprised us with delicious freshly baked croissants. It was an exciting day, selling 1,000 cupcakes is a real challenge. But we were no less than 13 people to sell all cupcakes: Jos, Sanne, Henny, Marianne, John, Ingrid, Gerlof, me, Sandra, Mariska, Denise, Natascha and Meike. We had our white T-shirts over our sweaters again. And a black cap with the Tim logo. Everyone was enthusiastic and so very recognizable.

Whoever read my previous blog might remember the scooter man with Parkinson’s who was touched by Tim. This gentleman came by again. Had he remembered that we would be at this location a week later? Did he come by especially for us? Again we started talking. After all, we recognized each other. He already had a cup of cupcakes in the basket by his wheel. “As long as I see you, I will keep buying. I hope you get all the money for a wheelchair bus soon”, he said. Really very sweet. What was this man’s concern for us.

Sales went well. At a quarter past 4 everything was sold out! Nobody expected that. 1,000 cupcakes would result in a turnover of 1,250 euros. But to our surprise, the amount was much higher. It was a amazing 1,778 euros! More than 500 euros was donated to Tim! Donated by people who put money in the collection box. How fantastic! We are so happy. Further more, Jeroen announced the results of the empty bottle deposit action in the Herenhof of the month of January. This was 378 euros! Really amazing! Thank you. All these amounts rolled up to 9,000 euros for a bus for Tim!
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Empty bottle deposit campaign
In January, you could donate your empty bottles at 4 supermarkets in the Netherlands for Tim. This resulted in amazing amount:

The empty bottle deposit campaign had a total result of 902 euros from December to January! Awesome. Thank you! In February, there are 3 supermarkets where we you hand in your empty bottles for a bus for Tim. You might want to ask your supermarket nearby if a bus for Tim may be the target for the empty bottle campaign? At the moment, we have several supermarkets throughout the Netherlands who joined our campaign, from Baarle-Nassau to Hillegom, from Nijmegen to Amstelveen and Oegstgeest. Really great that everyone is helping us so much.

Le Vingo
Recently, we were approached by the Ladies Circle Het Groene Hart. On March 31, Le Vingo will be organized for the second time. That is a bingo with wine and only for and by women. Last year was such a great success that they organize it again this year. The Ladies Circle chose a Bus for Tim as the charity of the evening. Really amazing! Great that another initiative for Tim is being set up again. Keep an eye on the facebook page of the Ladies Circle Groene Hart. You can buy tickets from the beginning of March. But be quick, because there are only a limited number of tickets available. If I can believe the organization, like last year, it will be a big party.

Collection boxes at the Albert Heijn cash registers
René, the supermarket manager of Albert Heijn de Aarhof, proposed last month to mount collection boxes at the cash desk of his store. At this moment, the collection boxes are on this location for a month. Customers of the Albert Heijn de Aarhof donated 382 euros to Tim. In the coming period, the collection buses will be moved to Albert Heijn de Herenhof and placed there at the cash registers. Now hope that people are committed to us and want to donate something on the bus.

New walking device
Tim is growing fast. His current walking device does not fit anymore. It is quite a process to get a new one again. Do you want a larger model of the current model? Then it is simple. But unfortunately it almost never works that way. If a fitting session has is planned, the supporting device provider comes to the rehabilitation center with different models. This happens during several days, because you can not put Tim in another walking device every fifteen minutes, like: “Hey Tim, just walk a bit, then we can see if it is for you”. Then Tim becomes overstimulated and overstretched, so you don’t get a good picture. You have to go to school for these fitting sessions for several days. Then, together with the provider, the physiotherapist and Tim, you can see what the best model seems. Which options are possible per model, which options are necessary and are they also available with the most suitable model? We are searching for the best alternative. Then we will test this device; Tim can walk around with it for a week. For example, there was a walking aid with very large wheels at the back, but with very small swinging skate wheels at the front. Ideal for indoors. Tim stood in it perfectly and left it very smoothly. But Tim walks outside a lot, so we were afraid he would fall over. So after all the effort, the model was rejected in the end.

In the end, we chose the same model that we already have, but one size larger. This model a has larger rear wheels and the whole construction is a lot sturdier, but unfortunately also a lot heavier. So lifting in the car for a while becomes a greater strain on your back. In addition, this model has reverse brakes: if Tim would walk uphill the brakes prevent him from fall backwards. This model also has an “anti-scissor plate”. That is a kind of shot that is between his legs at the height of his knees. This prevents his legs from tangling, so no scissors. A headrest is made especially for Tim, so that Tim can no longer stretch. Fortunately, the provider has already arranged the permission with the health insurer, who reimburses this walking aid. Glad we found a model that is suitable for Tim. This way you find out that it is always compromise: a model that seems very suitable, but has also disadvantages. This new model is so big that it is no longer possible to take a taxi home at the end of the week. So Tim can unfortunately not walk in at home on the weekend. Only at school. We hope that this model still fits in our own car, so that we can take it on vacation. If only the wheelchair bus was there, everything could just go along…

Supermarket Albert Heijn Aarhof
Hein visited René, the supermarket manager of Albert Heijn de Aarhof, this week. They brainstormed together about what fun initiatives could be organized to raise money for a bus for Tim. Very nice ideas came out of that. Keep an eye on my next blog, because soon I will tell you all about it and hopefully we can call on you again. I’m already excited, but can’t give details yet! More info will follow soon. Thank you dear people for all your help. We can’t do it without your help and support. We are eternally grateful. See you soon.

Wit love, Jessica