In a touching tale, an Illinois teacher who went by the nickname “Ms. Helma” showed steadfast dedication to make sure Maggie Vazquez, a 10-year-old pupil with cerebral palsy, could go on a two-day hiking trip. Because to Ms. Helma’s commitment, she carried Maggie on her shoulders, which made the journey memorable and inclusive.
Ms. Helma’s perseverance was evident when she had to decide whether to bring Maggie along for the trip to Camp Sullivan, which was 40 miles away from their Chicago charter school, Academy of Global Citizenship. She considered a number of options, but practical concerns precluded them. Using social media, she discovered the Freeloader, a carrier designed for taller kids like Maggie.
About fifty fourth-graders and ten members of the school staff were able to enjoy the camping trip from May 30 to June 1 thanks to Ms. Helma’s $300 purchase. It was difficult to carry Maggie through difficult terrain, but she was inspired by her happiness and perseverance.
Michelle Vazquez, Maggie’s mother, commended Ms. Helma for going “way above and beyond” and offering special experiences. Ms. Helma is the “epitome of relentless determination,” according to Sarah Elizabeth Ippel, the executive director of the institution.