A Foothills mother has launched a fundraiser to help her daughter walk.
Stephanie Sonnenberg has started a GoFundMe page with the goal of raising funds to purchase a Trexo Robotics computer that will help her six-year-old daughter Claire, who has cerebral palsy, walk.
Not only that, but Stephanie says it provides useful information on Claire's progress.
"It hooks onto a walker and it connects to her hips, her knees, and her ankles. It's a computer that runs with her so that it'll help her make steps. It'll tell us if she's initiating the walking, if the computer needs to take the steps for her, or if she's fighting them. It kind of gives her therapist a rundown of how she's doing and how she's strengthening.
They've recently had a chance to use one and see how Claire likes it.
"She's loving walking around, we've had her up every morning walking. It's been really amazing to try out. We've rented it to see if she likes it, and she loves it," says Stephanie.
"At first she had a bit of a puzzled look on her face, but once she started going and walking around and having little kids walking up to her and saying hi, it was a great realization for them seeing that she's the same height as them and understanding a little bit more about her. For her, it was amazing to just go and see things at a different level. Instead of being pushed and all of us walking behind her, we were all walking beside her. That's a great feeling for her, I think. Lots of smiles and lots of laughs."
A machine for Claire would cost about $41,000, with the walker and additional supports bringing the price tag up to $47,000.
None of it would be covered by insurance.
Fortunately, the fundraiser has been pretty successful so far, raising almost $5000 in just a few days.
"It's always so nice to look on there and see how many people want to help her. She has an Instagram account and so many followers and people that want to stick with her journey. When people support us like this, it's so heartwarming."