American Wheelchair Mission

David Dausey, PH.D., Dean of the School of Health Professions and Public Health, is continuing his Mercy Mission alongside his students through the American Wheelchair Mission.

Dausey is an alumni of Mercyhurst and came back to teach and pursue his passion for helping those in need. He teaches multiple Public Health classes including Global Health.
Through his Global Health class as well as his own partnership and involvement in Knights of Columbus, an all male Catholic organization who do charity work in their communities, and the American Wheelchair Mission, he and his students plan to raise money to give wheelchairs to children in need.

His partnership with AWM began six years ago after meeting Chris Lewis in rural Mexico through Lifelong Mobility Project. President of AWM Chris Lewis is the son of comedian Jerry Lewis who led Jerry’s Kids.

The American Wheelchair Mission is to send wheelchairs to disabled children in underdeveloped and developing countries. Dausey’s inspiration for teaming up with this charity was when he saw a child without legs during his trip in rural Mexico. He couldn’t help but feel bad for this child and thinking about the struggle that comes as you age with disabilities.

Along with his own research, Dausey and his Global Health class are working to raise money for the charity and they are doing that by dividing the class into four teams who are competing to raise the most money.

Each member of the team comes up with various charity events such as bake sales, carrying cans around and teaming up with sport teams to raise money and awareness.

When talking about the students’ projects, Dausey said, “I have had to calm them down” because of their enthusiasm for this project and charity. Part of their plan to raise awareness is by holding their Live Below the Line Campaign where the student union will serve meals similar to those that impoverished people eat. These meals will sell for $2 and the money will go towards the foundation.

Dausey said “my goal is to make it so we’re doing more than just the books.” He wants this project to be experiential and give the students chances to be actual Ambassadors of Service just like he had done while at Mercyhurst.

Dausey encourages his students as well as the rest of the student body to get involved. You as a student can donate money straight to the charity by visiting www.amwheelchair.org or donating to the Public Health department directly by contact Dausey at ddausey@mercyhurst.edu.

Role: 
Contributing writer
Author: 
Samantha Beckas
Author E-Mail: 
sbecka50@lakers.mercyhurst.edu