Let me introduce you to Peter Donnelly from the UK. He’s an amazing soul who has been traveling around the world, going to such exotic lands as Bangladesh, India, Tibet and Japan. He’s logged in over 8,000 miles, seen some amazing sites and shared his friendship with others… and did I mention Peter is a paraplegic?
That’s right. Peter, who’s in his mid-twenties, used to be able to walk and when he did, he adventured around and loved life. Unfortunately, a motorcycle accident provided him with a T6 spinal cord injury and he lost the feeling from the waist down.
Not feeling sorry for himself and having not lost one bit of the adventurous spirit, he decided to trek solo around the world in his wheelchair. He hopes to provide inspiration for the many other individuals who have a physical handicap and may think they are limited to travel.
Peter has gone through the craziest traffic in the world, traveled across the Himalayas, gone up the Great Wall of China and has experienced the handicap accessibility (and lack thereof) in 14 nations. He doesn’t ask for help, in fact, his wheelchair doesn’t even have handles. He has a custom chair, hard rubber tires and wheels that can easily pop off so he can pack his chair when he rides trains and buses. And you thought travelling was tough!
I had the privilege to chat with Peter in Beijing for a bit and he graciously told me about his experiences and challenges traveling. He also told me about his mission to bring about crutches and chairs to those in countries such as Bangladesh, where people can’t afford or even have access to such mobility devices. For three months, he volunteered in providing counsel, rehabilitation and vocational training to others who have paraplegia.
Peter is currently in Northwest China. A very rural area, he plans to trek through Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Azerbaijan across the Caspian Sea to Georgia, Turkey and back home to England. If you want to read more about Peter’s journey, follow his blog at rollingbackhome.blogspot.com
I asked Peter what he wants to do when he gets back to England. “I’m planning on being the first Paraplegic to skydive solo in the world.”
More information on supporting the Center in Bangladesh can be found at: justgiving.com/rollingbackhome