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A wheelchair for Joshua

Mays Mission for the Handicapped is proud to announce we donated a wheelchair to former employee Joshua Garret. Joshua was very proud to receive the wheelchair, saying “This is much appreciated as I enter the next phase of my life.”

We originally bought the wheelchair while Joshua was working for us because, as a double amputee, it was difficult for him to be on his prosthetics all day. Joshua said it was much nicer and in better condition than his chair at home and could use one for home as well.

We were more than happy to provide him with this chair and we wish Joshua well in all his future endeavors.

To learn more call us or comment and we would be glad to provide you with more information and free brochures to help advocate on behalf of people with disabilities in your community. These brochures were produced by employees with disabilities like Joshua.

Thanks for you support!

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Programs

Mission Gift Paks

  Mays Mission likes to call our employees with disabilities “handicapable” employees.

  One exciting and rewarding project for the employees of Mays Mission for the Handicapped is the Gift Pak program. This program helps our employees with disabilities help themselves.

  The Gift Paks are put together from items produced at the Mission. Each Gift Pak contains a pen, postcards, personal notepads, bookmarks, and our New Hope Newsletter. They are designed, printed, and assembled by the Handicapable employees of Mays Mission.

  Each year our representatives make tours across the United States visiting some of our handicapped friends and stopping at nursing care facilities to distribute these Gift Paks. We also ship our Gift Paks out to interested nursing homes.

  When we began this program we had no idea it would receive such a favorable response. We received many letters from nursing home directors expressing how much each resident enjoyed the Gift Pak. We are certainly proud of them!

  It is through the generosity of our donors that we are able to help others. For more information, or for gift paks that you can help distribute, please call us at 888-503-7955 or email us at info@maysmission.org today and please feel free to share your experiences in the comments section.

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Become an advocate for people with disabilities today!

What can we do to improve the lives of others, especially those with disabilities?

The dictionary describes an “advocate” as one who publicly supports or suggests an idea, development or way of doing something.

Here at Mays Mission, our primary goal is to aid and assist people with disabilities. Yes, putting to work those who may have difficulty finding gainful employment is one facet of our purpose yet there is so much more.

Public education regarding the abilities and capabilities of people with disabilities is of utmost importance. You see, through our various programs and direct mail, we have the opportunity to inform and educate the public throughout the country that given the opportunity, people with disabilities can become productive citizens.

Through our On-The-Job Training Program we have seen scores of people with a variety of disabilities come and go here at Mays Mission while others have chosen to stay with us. It’s heartwarming to know that some have bought their own homes, learned to drive and purchased automobiles, while some have moved on to bigger and better opportunities. Seeing people succeed and become more independent where at one time hope seemed lost is an indescribable feeling. This On-The-Job Training Program is only possible because of the kind hearts of our donors.

For over fifty years now here at Mays Mission we have had one goal: to aid and assist people with disabilities. Won’t you please join us?  Call us at 1-888-503-7955, email us at info@maysmission.org or message us on Facebook or Instagram to learn more about our programs and see how you can be an advocate for people with disabilities. We have brochures produced by individuals with disabilities we can send you free of charge to share in your community. And we accept donations through Paypal, just click the donate button here on our website. Thank you so much for your help in our mission of over 50 years of serving the disabled!

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Programs

Total eclipse at Mays Mission

On the afternoon of April the 8th, Mays Mission employees were treated with a chance to see the solar eclipse. Here in Arkansas we were fortunate enough to be in the direct path of totality and employees took a few minutes to witness this natural phenomenon with special glasses provided to us by our local Chamber Of Commerce here in Heber Springs.

At around 1:55 PM the moon had traveled directly in front of the sun and we got to see this incredibly rare moment. It was dark enough some stars were visible in the sky and God blessed us with beautiful weather and a clear sky to experience this rare event. Such an event is rare enough there won’t be another in North America until 2044.

Thanks for supporting May Mission for the Handicapped. If you would like to help us advocate on behalf of individuals with disabilities in your community we have brochures we can provide you with free of charge. These brochures were produced by individuals with disabilities here at Mays Mission.

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Planning Ahead

It’s always a good, no – make that a great idea – to plan ahead when doing most anything. My thought in this edition though is for building or buying a home when people with disabilities and the elderly are involved – especially with arthritis. What’s described below is not consistently true, but it’s a good rule to follow.

In 1994 we decided to build a 1600 sq. ft. home. Being in a wheelchair for 23 years at that time, I knew very well what I wanted to include and what things to avoid. Obviously, stairs, steps and a wheelchair do not mix. That meant either build on a concrete slab or be prepared to build a ramp. Next, we wanted the home easy to navigate. We made all our doorways 3 feet wide. The only exceptions were linen closets, broom closets and the like. In our hallway, we added another 6 inches (42” total) so that the turning radius into any room was adequate without scuffing or tearing off trim and molding. One bathroom had a roll-in shower with a handheld shower head.     

Now, what I’ve said so far may not sound like any big deal. But what a few “able-bodied” people have commented on when they come to visit is “your home is so spacious. I don’t feel cramped at all.” “You have so much room.” Even the people who make deliveries comment on the width of the doors making it much easier to bring in furniture and appliances.

These are just a few ideas that can make life easier for those of us who have trouble getting around. Think of these when building or look for them when buying. For more ideas request our free brochure, “Making Your Home User Friendly,” by calling us at 1-888-503-7955 or email us at info@maysmission.org today. We are all aging one day at a time. Looking ahead and planning when making one of the biggest investments of our lives may be the best thing we’ve ever done!

And if you have any experience with this subject please feel free to share in the comments section. Thanks!

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Don’t count them out!

What do these men have in common: Thomas Edison, Ludwig van Beethoven, Albert Einstein and Jim Abbott?  Before we get to that, let’s talk a little about “equality.”  Now, I am not talking about getting all excited about race or gender, but thinking more along the lines of simply being human. 

When the Pilgrims left England in pursuit of freedom, they found themselves in a new, untamed world.  Although there were many similarities to the land they left behind, there were struggles ahead to establish what they once knew as “ordinary life.”  The land needed to be cleared for homes and farming.  Trades and businesses needed to be established so the new inhabitants could carry out the chores of settling towns and cities.  The tasks ahead were monumental.  Had so many not put forth a great effort, they surely would have failed.

Now, when we think of people with disabilities, countless citizens desire to put forth the effort, yet many are not given the opportunity to prove themselves.  Countless numbers are prejudged by physical appearance, a speech impediment or something perceived as an “obviously disability.”

Did you know that Thomas Edison was thought to have a learning disability and didn’t learn to read until the age of twelve?  Beethoven became deaf at about age 26 and composed some of his greatest works thereafter.  Albert Einstein had a learning disability and did not speak until age 3. He had a very difficult time doing math in school. It was also very hard for him to express himself through writing.  Jim Abbott was born with one hand.  He was an “All America” pitcher for the University of Michigan.  Abbott was drafted into the major leagues and eventually went on to pitch a “no hitter” for the New York Yankees against the Cleveland Indians.

All these men were given an opportunity to prove themselves despite a handicap or disability.  And, that’s what we do at Mays Mission.

Now, would you go out and encourage an employer to give people with disabilities a chance?  They would appreciate it and you will feel better for giving someone the opportunity to succeed.

If you would like more information on how you can help please call 888-503-7955 or email us at info@maysmission.org today. And thank you for supporting people with disabilities!

Hiring the disabled is smart business!

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Programs

David Marrs: Superhero!

A lot of our donors know that David Marrs is an integral part of the Mays Mission Production Team and has never let his disability hold him down. But you may not know that David Marrs is also heavily involved with the Heber Springs Chamber of Commerce as a volunteer in our community.

David has been volunteering with the Chamber for several years now pitching in at local business grand openings and community events like the local fireworks extravaganza over the Fourth of July every year and big tourist attractions like the upcoming local Springfest where David assists locals and tourists alike in the attractions. David is on a first name basis with many local politicians and business owners because of his volunteering efforts.

The folks at the Chamber of Commerce have made David an ‘Ambassador’ as a representative of Mays Mission and is a past recipient of the Chamber of Commerce ‘Super Hero’ Award for his volunteering achievements. Mays Mission for the Handicapped is proud of David and his community heroics!

David meeting Arkansas Lieutenant Governor Tim Griffin at a recent Chamber of Commerce Banquet.

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Exposure Breeds Comfort

For many people who have little exposure or experience with a disabled individual, the initial focus of the new relationship, unfortunately, is on the disability. As we have come to know, getting truly acquainted with someone takes much more than concentrating on physical characteristics. Focusing on the disability instead of the inner-beauty and personality causes uneasiness. A true and lasting relationship will take much longer to develop. If the disability is deafness, you may become very self-conscious about what you are not saying or communicating with your hands. If the disability is blindness, you may become self-conscious about pointing or saying phrases such as “see you later,” and so on. The truth is that you will probably be uneasy until your relationship has had time to develop. Focusing on a disability will only cause delay in your maturing relationship. Consider this, that you too, must be yourself in order for the good and healthy relationship to properly develop. This is true of all relationships, not simply with the disabled. In a “normal” relationship, factors such as gender, age, race, and physical features seem very pronounced when we first meet. These features quickly become secondary, and we eventually lose awareness of them completely. The same can and should be true when getting to know the disabled. Be at ease. Be yourself. Treat your new-found friend the same way that you would like to be treated. That’s the best way to develop and nurture a relationship that is long and lasting.

Please feel free to share in the comments section. If you would like more information call us at 1-888-503-7955 or email us at info@maysmission.org and thank you for supporting people with disabilities!

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Our founder’s dream and his mission

The late Ewing W. Mays founded Mays Mission, a non-profit organization…


…in order to give help, encouragement and guidance to the physically and mentally disabled.
As a double amputee (he lost both of his legs during World War II), Ewing knew all to well the anguish and heartache of being disabled. He was only 25 years old when he lost his legs.


For two years he lay in a hospital bed at McCloskey General Hospital in Temple, Texas undergoing one operation after another before being fitted for artificial legs.


Not once did a person with a similar disability ever visit him. No effort was made to offer him encouragement or to help him understand how to overcome his disability.


He found himself wishing for a peaceful death.


He just couldn’t stand the torture, pain and worry of being a burden to his family – of never being able to live as a whole person again.


But God knew his needs better than he did, and He answered Ewing’s prayers with a vocation and a dream…


…to use his disability as a way to help others like him to build a place where disabled people could rebuild their lives. Ewing worked hard at his spiritual and physical therapy, and, with the help of two artificial limbs, was soon able to walk as well as anyone.


In 1951, God opened new doors to him and, as National Commander of the Disabled American Veterans, he toured the military hospitals of Korea and Japan.


His mission was simple – to visit the wounded servicemen, both American and South Korean…
…more than 80,000 men who were facing amputations and had no one to understand their grief or despair.


As he moved from bed to bed, his mind began recording things that seemed to impress those young men with crippled bodies.


And this set the course God had planned for the rest of Ewing Mays’ life.


Year after year, he toured military hospitals across America giving encouragement and stressing back in 1967:


“It’s ability, not disability, that counts.”


During one hospital visit, Gerald D. Schroeder, another young double amputee, asked Ewing how much pressure he could take on the stumps of his legs.


Ewing simply lifted the soldier from his wheelchair, held him for a few minutes and replied, “That’s how much!”


Letters soon began pouring in from hospitals he had visited, requesting that he return…


…newspapers featured articles on the effectiveness of his special brand of therapy and explained how it was changing the lives of “hopeless” young people.


That’s when he started dreaming about building the New Hope Center – a facility where, in addition to offering physical, emotional and spiritual support, training could be provided in various types of work. And we’ve been able to do just that since our opening in 1982.

Unemployment is one of the most profound issues facing the disability community. Only 17% of people with disabilities report being in the labor force, compared to 64% of non-disabled adults. People with disabilities remain twice as likely to drop out of high school, henceforth no skills. In fact, the employment rate for all people with disabilities has remained relatively constant since 1986.


That is why our on-the-job training is so important.

If you would like more information on our On-The-Job Training program call us or email us at info@maysmission.org and we will be glad to provide you with some of our free brochures to hand out to employers in your area and let them know that hiring the disabled is smart business! Thank you for your support!