Helping others by building one ramp at a time

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - For the first time in nearly four months James Silva is able to bring his wife home, thanks to a ramp and the people who built it.

Silva's wife suffers from multiple sclerosis.

"Before she could walk a little bit but now she can't walk at all so I didn't know what I was going to do,"Silva said.

Chuck Coward with the Human Needs Network says there was a waiting list of people in the Tri- County area that need home access ramps.

The idea for the Ramp It Up program came to life with the collaboration of several local agencies.

"There are people that cant come home from nursing homes cant come home from hospitals until home access ramps are in place," said Co-Founder Chuck Coward.

Coward says the whole concept is entirely a community initiative.

To build one ramp can cost anywhere from 8 to 9 hundred dollars and can take 4 to 5 hours to complete.

Coward says the program is possible because of volunteers giving both time to help build and money to make it possible.

Coward says 100 percent of proceeds go to building the much needed ramps.

"Its been an amazing example of what happens when a community comes together and we can all come together with a shared heart and shared vision of our community,"Coward said.

For people like James Silva the program means much more.

"My wife is home now," Silva said.

"People will continue to need ramps in their county but we are trying to be repaired to respond to that need,"Coward said.

The Ramp It Up program has only been in existence since April.

Since the program started 7 ramps have been completed.

The goal for the organization is to complete all 30 ramps by the end of this year.

Anyone can help either by volunteering their time or by donating the funds for each ramp project.

to find out how you can help call 266-5878.

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