'If you’re an underdog, mentally disabled, physically disabled, if you don’t fit in, if you're not as pretty as the others, you can still be a hero.'
                                                  - Steve Guttenberg

Hannah Szymanski

The Problem

49.7 million - Number of people age 5 and over with a disability, according to Census 2000; this is a ratio of nearly 1-in-5 U.S. residents, or 19 percent.

Among these —
• 5.2 million were between the ages of 5 and 20. This was 8 percent of people in this age group.

• 30.6 million were between the ages of 21 and 64. Fifty-seven percent of them were employed.

• 14.0 million were 65 and over. Those with disabilities comprised 42 percent of people in this age group.

Hannah's wheelchair; now since donated...

According to the World Health Organization, 600 million people worldwide are affected by disabilities, 49 million in the United States, of whom only 5% attend church. This is one of the largest groups of people not effectively reached with the Gospel. Further disability-related statistics are staggering:

•2.3 million disabled people are institutionalized

•The poverty rate among families whose children have developmental disabilities is nearly twice the national average (Wall Street Journal Sept. 20, 2005; Needing Assistance, Parents of Disabled Resort to Extremes)

•80% of families with the birth of a disabled family member experience divorce




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