Auction to raise funds for a family’s wheelchair van gains overwhelming support from Waco businesses

Online auction receives overwhelming support from small businesses
Online auction receives overwhelming support from small businesses(Ally Kadlubar)
Published: Mar. 13, 2023 at 8:37 AM CDT
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - Several small businesses in Waco made multiple donations toward an online auction that will help the Wolfe family purchase a new wheelchair accessible van.

Addie Wolfe has already beat the odds multiple times in her eight years of living. Despite living with significant chromosomal abnormalities, she has inspired book series, taken her first step and brought the best out of her community members.

“She is eight now, almost nine, and we just focus on living every day to the fullest, letting her enjoy a fulfilled life and a life that she deserves,” Stephanie Wolfe, Addie’s mom, said.

Now, their family is battling with costly maintenance issues for their 20-year-old van that was gifted to them years ago.

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“It has been a blessing in its time, it has served its purpose and the need that we needed during this time,” Wolfe said. “However, it’s old...it has needed a lot of maintenance and that is really costly and it’s on its last legs.”

Wolfe started a GoFundMe at first and has raised around $12,000 from that; however, she said a brand new wheelchair van is around $75-85,000. She knew she needed to do more in order to reach that goal.

“We’re asking for brand new because that’s what she needs,” she said. “We want something that will last a long time, and we know it’s a lofty goal, but we think we can do it.”

Wolfe started reaching out to small businesses in the Waco area, and she was amazed at the feedback and support the auction received.

“I was really nervous about going to people and asking if they wanted to donate for this particular cause, but the community has been really receptive,” she said. “Every business has said yes or how they have a story that relates and they want to help.”

“It’s just so exciting to see the impact that just one little girl can make on a whole community,” Wolfe said.

More than 50 businesses including JDH Iron Designs, Alpha Lit Waco, Blue Hills Ranch, Di Campli’s, Glow Waco, Olive Grove Photography and many other Waco small businesses have donated a total of 88 bid items for community members to bid on.

One local business and fitness center, REFIT Studio + HQ, said they were honored to be able to donate a bid item for Addie’s cause as Wolfe has been a recent member of the fitness center for a few months.

“It just felt like such an easy yes for us to say we want to donate to this cause and help support this wonderful woman and her family,” Heather Roush, REFIT Studio product manager, said.

“It was honestly such an honor to be able to contribute in such a small way,” Allison Malcom, REFIT Studio social media manager, said. “I wish that there was even more that we could do because her presence and her joy here has meant so much to us as a community, so it’s really an honor to be even a small part of it.”

The money from the winning bid will go toward funding for Addie’s new wheelchair van.

The auction opened Sunday and will close March 19 at midnight. When the auction is over, the winner will be contacted on how to receive their item.

You can find the link to the auction here.