Ability Tech, Recipient

Sitting in a local Sioux City, Iowa, hospital with their son Kayden, who has limitations and is wheelchair-bound, Dustin and Shanna Rhoades were told they were being transferred to a hospital two hours away. Once they arrived, they were unexpectedly flown to a Denver hospital. Suddenly, they were hundreds of miles away from home with no phone chargers, hygiene supplies or change of clothes. Because Kayden is nonverbal, Dustin and Shanna don’t leave his hospital room, so they just went without basic supplies. After that, Dustin and Shanna decided to help other parents caught in those same situations. With duffel bag giveaways called “Blessing Bags,” they’re now able to help make parents’ hospital stays easier. Keeping parents comfortable in hospital roomsMan holding two branded duffel bags standing outside a children’s hospital. A Blessing Bag is a care package filled with necessities and comfort items for parents of children hospitalized away from home. Included are things like a phone charger, personalized note from the bag donor, notebook, pen, activity book, male and female hygiene kits, shower shoes and a change of socks. Beyond the basics, donors can also include items like a blanket, water flavoring packets and sleeping masks. One parent said this after discovering the Blessing Bag program: “Oh, this brings so many memories flooding back of my husband and I sitting in strange hospital rooms, hours away with our epileptic son, with nothing but the clothes on our backs. No way to shower, or even brush our teeth. Stuck in a tiny hospital room for days on end. One time our son was life flighted over two hours away to the closest children’s hospital after a really bad extended grand mal seizure, and my husband, a coal miner, left straight from work and drove there. He was stuck filthy, in dirty work clothes and muddy boots for three days there. I was stuck in pajamas. It was awful. Some of these things would’ve made our unexpected stay A LOT more comfortable.” Ability Tech wanted a high-quality, durable bag for the Blessing Bag program. Thanks to a 4imprint one by one® grant, Ability Tech was able to order duffel bag giveaways. “Many times, parents come home from the hospital with more things than they went with. This bag is big enough to accommodate all the Blessing Bag supplies and more. It’s also very durable, so parents can reuse the duffel bags over and over,” Dustin Rhoades, Founder of Ability Tech, said.

For more information about Ability Tech, please visit https://abilitytech.org/ opens in new window