They are a great option for someone who can’t afford a grasping device, someone who wants or needs a cheaper alternative to tradition prosthetics, who wants a customizable 3D printed themed device, or who has partial fingers that make it nearly impossible to fit into a traditional prosthetic.
Chris Craft reached out to his group of supporting Hand Challenge volunteers to help us get enough hand parts printed in time for the event. Colleges, grade schools, businesses, and individuals from all over the USA, and even other countries, worked quickly to print and ship parts to us. One volunteer from Europe even donated enough to build several hands. It takes an average of 15-30 hours to print each part to assemble one full hand. Mr. Hendrix’s wife, Debbe, printed day and night on their family’s personal 3D printer up to the evening before the event. We only had a short time to get the hand parts printed, inspected, thermo-formed, sorted, labeled and shipped to each of the three Microsoft locations. This event could not have happened without the love and commitment of each of the kind Hand Challenge supporters donating their time and materials.
The day of the Build-A-Thon, Mr. Hendrix, Mrs. Hendrix, Tech-savvy Microsoft Employees, Myself (Sarah Haight), and my son Cameron (who uses one of the 3D printed hands himself), all set up for the event and welcomed each Microsoft employee as they came excited for a hands-on learning experience that would give back to the world. After a short speech and demonstration, instructions were provided to each table and the building commenced. We made rounds to help with questions when needed.
People laughed, problem solved, and worked so well together. A few even turned it into a competition amongst themselves or other tables. The response from those who made it were overwhelming positive. Everyone had so much fun that many employees have asked that we return to make it an annual event!
On top of the donations raised by the employees who came to the build events, Microsoft Corporation matched each donation made, dollar for dollar! Several of the hands have already been matched with grateful recipients. We will be donating as many hands as needed to the Spring 2018 Hands to Love camp as well. As always, each hand is free for the recipient thanks to donors like Microsoft.
We are extremely grateful to each individual and organization who participated in the preparation all he way through the completion of this initiative. Here is a huge virtual round of applause to Matt Hendrix for leading this initiative, to each of the Microsoft locations for hosting the events, and to the donors. Different Heroes is honored to have your support.
You are all Different Heroes!