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BY Lauren

Daniel Elkus: Raising Money & Awareness for children with Cerebral Palsy

Daniel Elkus- Quick Ramps For KidsDaniel Elkus is an 18 year old senior at Frankel Jewish Academy and a recent Friendship Circle volunteer. Recently, he raised not only money but also some very important awareness as producer and writer of this United Cerebral Palsy Documentary. Daniel is an outstanding example of the young people that comprise our next generation of leaders. I recently sat down with him to discuss his motivations and his inspiration behind his support of UCP Detroit.

1. What is your history with the UCP Detroit?

My  history with  UCP Detroit began in 9th Grade when I began looking for a  meaningful community service project.  I set up a meeting with Leslynn Angel, UCP-Detroit President to learn more about their programs.  The program that I found was most meaningful was QuickRamps For Kids.  For  four years, I have been raising awareness and funding to provide the portable wheelchair ramps to increase social interaction in the community for these children.

2. How did you become involved with the creation of this video?

After raising $2,500 in a letter campaign to family and friends, I realized that I wished to do more for the QuickRamps program by reaching more people through YouTube.  I again contacted LeslynnAngel with this idea and she connected me with Doner Advertising and Postique post-production.  Together we found a recipient family and began laying the groundwork for the video production.  I created the storyboard, script and conducted the interview with the recipient’s family.

3. What are you most proud of in this video?

I am most proud of the fact that I was able to portray  the positive impact that the Quick Ramp had on a family’s  life.

4. Quick Ramps is a great tool for individuals with CP. Who came up with this idea? What inspired them?

The QuickRamp is a tool for anyone in a wheelchair who is looking for away to expand access into their community.

5. What was the most challenging aspect of creating this video?

The most challenging aspect of creating this video was coordinating everyone’s busy schedules.

6. Have you had a positive response so far?

Yes, I was able to increase my fundraising to over $5,100 so far.  The touching letters have served as further insperation for my efforts on this project.

7. What are your personal career goals and how does this project play into that?

My personal career goals are to attend Law School and practice Disability Law dealing with ADA-noncompliance.  This project taught me that with a bit of effort I was able to help so many others.  That is my true goal with my legal career.

8. If you could tell the world one thing about CP…What would it be?

Don’t judge people by their outward appearance.


Written on March 8, 2011 by:

Lauren Todaro joined The Friendship Circle in March of 2009 as the Assistant to the Director. As a writer and advocate for equality, she is consistently on the search for creative ways to bring more social advocacy and awareness to the Metro Detroit community. Have an idea? Email her at [email protected]

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