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“We appreciate Boundless so much because they’ve already taken down barriers for us, and made things possible that we didn’t imagine would be.”

Ezra Prashad

Off to running start,
Ezra shows his independent spirit.

Heading into parenthood with a child who has a physical disability is daunting for most parents. This certainly was the case with Andrew and Beth Prashad when they were told that their son Ezra had spina bifida, a type of birth defect that occurs when the bones of the spine don’t form properly around the baby’s spinal cord. The condition affects people in various ways. In Ezra’s case, he would have some paralysis below the waist that would affect his mobility.

“We weren’t sure what to expect,” Beth says. “But we were told there would be good people along the way and that’s exactly what we found at Boundless.”

Leg braces can help children with mobility issues by strengthening their legs and keeping them in the proper position as they learn to walk. So when Ezra started crawling and standing up for the first time, his physical therapist at ErinoakKids Centre recommended he get a pair of AFOs (ankle-foot orthoses) from Boundless. Once Ezra got his first pair of AFOs, his mobility really started to take off, allowing his parents to push him much further in physio and other therapies. Indeed, he outgrew his first pair of orthotics much faster than anyone expected. And so, he had another pair of AFOs made at Boundless, a procedure both parents describe as quick and seamless.

“Boundless stepped in at exactly the right time because Ezra was so ready to have his independence. Getting braces has given him this independence. We’ve started a new exercise of helping him climb up the stairs, or hold his balance. Because of the pair of AFOs, we are now guiding his feet, versus holding his feet.”

While Ezra currently uses a tiny walker, his parents hope he can transition to a quad cane (a cane with a metal base at the bottom with four small feet that extend from the base) in a couple of years. As his goals change, so will his braces. For now, they are excited to see how much independence he has gained, and how it has enabled him to exceed his former boundaries.

“I know he is going to go far in life,” his mother says. “So the fewer barriers he has in his way, the better.”