Meet 14-year-old Matthew. He was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. He recently had surgery to correct his club foot. The combination of conditions limits his ability to walk. Matthew uses a walker for around his house, but he is confined to a wheelchair for longer distances. He also has some cognitive challenges. None of these obstacles hinder is happiness.
Matthew is best described as fun. He enjoys helping to cook his favorite foods. He is the official pourer and stirrer, and his specialties are pancakes, brownies, and pies. Yum! Matthew also plays buddy ball, which is baseball designed for children with disabilities. He was thrilled to meet the mascot for the Tampa Bay Rays, and normally he is scared of people dressed in costumes. He even plays catch with his dog Bentley; they can go for hours without getting tired. Matthew is not just interested in baseball. He hopes to someday participate in soccer. The young boy is a hard-working student, and he is especially fascinated with science. Matthew enjoys these and other activities, but he loves doing anything and everything with his grandpa. They are the best of friends who frequently make each other laugh and smile. And, it’s impossible not to smile when hearing Matthew’s adorable belly laugh. Meet Matthew and understand what it means to be joyful.
Matthew recently received an adaptive tricycle thanks to generous sponsors. His mom cried as Matthew grinned from ear to ear and began racing around, ready to leave his disability behind in the dust! Thank you to everybody who made Matthew’s dream come true!