WNC Bridge Foundation’s Children’s Services Fund has been a game-changer for Dominic Taylor and his family, as expressed by his mom Crystal. Daily activities are challenging for her seven-year-old son, diagnosed with intellectual and developmental disabilities, including suffering from a feeding delay and swallowing difficulty. Dom’s doctors recommended a feeding seat to help with mealtimes; however, finding the right chair for Dom proved to be challenging.
Crystal notes, “Dom has had a couple of different seats/chairs in the past to use for his feeding seat. The first chair was unbelievably huge and bulky. Although it provided the support he needed, it did not work for our small space, and it was so heavy that we couldn’t take it with us for outings.” The difficulty of transporting the chair meant the family, who resides in Bryson City, NC, avoided many of their favorite activities, including attending church fellowship dinners and going out to eat as a family. The second chair the family tried for Dom was an adaptive stroller, but it still took up too much space for the family to eat comfortably around their kitchen table. Crystal shares, “Before we received assistance from WNC Bridge’s Children’s Services Fund, we had not been able to sit down to eat at the kitchen table for three years; it left us feeling disconnected from each other. Not having the right type of chair for Dom also meant he had not been able to work on self-feeding or any therapies that require sitting as he requires a harness/belt to keep him from moving.”
Thanks to the Children’s Services Fund, WNC Bridge Foundation provided Dom with a more supportive and transportable chair, The Special Tomato Out & About Seat. “This new Seat has made such a difference for our family,” Crystal explains. The Tomato’s pelvic harness keeps Dom from scooting under the table. In addition, the chest harness is extremely useful in helping him sit up straight and keeping Dom from leaning as he does when he gets fatigued, which increases his risk for choking.”
“The Special Tomato Out & About Seat has truly been a blessing. We can now gather as a family around the table for our meals, take the Tomato Seat to restaurants, and go with ease to our church fellowship dinners. Dom is now finally included in everything that typical families do on a routine basis. We are so very thankful to WNC Bridge for making life more inclusive for our entire family.”