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Woman Paralyzed From The Chest Down Travels Across Indonesia On A Modified Motorbike (Tissue Alert)

(Best watched in HD)

A Journey to Inspire People Whose Disabilities Prevent Them From Leaving the House.

YOGYAKARTA, Indonesia -- On May 10, 2013, Sri Lestari, a woman who lost the use of her legs at the age of 23, will embark on a journey from Jakarta to Bali on a modified motorcycle. Over the course of her 1,212 kilometer trip she will visit families of people with disabilities to empower them with her story, and her journey will culminate with a presentation at TEDxUbud on June 1, 2013.

When Sri Lestari was 23, she was in an accident that left her paralyzed from the waist down. For 10 years Sri was house-bound, assuming she had lost not only the use of her legs, but her freedom as well. That is, until she got her wheelchair and modified motorcycle. Now Sri lives a full, independent life, and is employed as a social worker by the Indonesian office of UCP Wheels for Humanity, a non profit organization dedicated to increasing access to mobility and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities in developing countries throughout the world.

It is estimated that there are more than 2.4 million people who require a wheelchair in Indonesia, many of whom, spend their lives entirely at home because they cannot access basic mobility equipment or modified motorcycles like Sri's. UCP Wheels for Humanity Executive Director Michael Allen comments: "We are proud to support Sri's journey from Jakarta to Bali. As part of her work with UCP Wheels Indonesia, Sri enriches the lives of children and adults with disabilities every day, and we know that her courage, optimism, and success has the potential to inspire thousands more. She has shown how mobility and opportunityŚcombined with an undeniable passion for lifeŚcan enrich our world, and we are excited to follow her adventures when she sets off." For more information, please visit www.ucpwfh.org.

Contact: Brooke Lykins, Director of Development UCP Wheels for Humanity Email: blykins@ucpwfh.org

Sri's Story

Hi, my name is Sri Lestari. I am from Klaten, Central Java, Indonesia. I've been paralyzed from the chest down since I was in an accident when I was 23. Watch the video above to hear my story, and learn about my mission to inspire other Indonesians with disabilities.

I think every Indonesian with a disabilty should be able to do the same kind of things that people without disabilities do (and that I do!).

I'll do this by an inspiring trip, travelling 1,212 km from Jakarta to Bali on my modified motorbike. I want to show that people with disabilities in Indonesia can live free, independent, productive and happy lives! I need your support, I can't make it by myself!

The impact of this campaign

In 2009, I started working as a social worker for an international organization called United Cerebral Palsy, Wheels for Humanity. I spend my days visiting people with disabilities who just stay at home. They are surprised that I can live independently, go everywhere by myself on my modified motorcycle, and work a normal job. They are happy when they see me, because I am 'diffable', (differently abled), and I am a woman and I can work. I really want to share my experience - how I can be independent and healthy as a diffabled paraplegic.

Let's work together to help more disabled people out of their houses, and to have the same opportunities as others.

About the trip

The trip will take 3 weeks, and I plan to travel about 75km a day with some longer stops. I will stop in different towns and cities along the way and speak with people with disabilities about my story and my experience.

The trip will end in Bali on May 29th, 3 days before TEDxUbud. I will appear onstage at TEDxUbud, and hopefully share the story of my trip (this has already been arranged with the TEDx organizers.)

Other ways you can help

Even if you can't contribute to the campaign, telling others about my story, my trip and my dream really helps! So 'like' my page on Facebook, and share my campaign with the world!

Thank you so much, Sri Lestari

P.S. Special thanks to my bosses at UCP WFH, who are giving me so many opportunities and to the organizers of TEDxUbud, who have been very supportive!


A friend of mine is making a documentary series on this and I'll add some clips when they become available...
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