Local know-how builds Ryder his own exerciser

Ryder, pictured with mum Janene Sweetnam, now has a Universal Exercise Unit thanks to Fraser Coast TESS and local businesses.
Ryder, pictured with mum Janene Sweetnam, now has a Universal Exercise Unit thanks to Fraser Coast TESS and local businesses. Stephanie Kay

RYDER Sweetnam can now receive vital physical therapy at home, thanks to the support of the Fraser Coast community.

The six-year-old Spastic Quadriplegic Cerebral Palsy sufferer made two visits to the United States for intensive physical therapy but needed his own Universal Exercise Unit at home.

The UEU usually costs thousands of dollars but a team of locals stepped in to help Ryder and his family.

"It teared me up," Ryder's mum Janene Sweetnam said.

"This was going to cost us $7000 words can't express, I was very emotional when I saw it. It was beyond words."

Ms Sweetnam said UEU would be used to help strengthen Ryder's muscles.

She said she was thankful to the community for the money raised to get Ryder to America and for Ryder's godmother Belinda Thompson.

"She was integral in co-ordinating the effort," Ms Sweetnam said.

Dix Manufacturing, Global Manufacturing and Maryborough Bolts supplied materials and services, while Fraser Coast Training Employment Support Services trainer David Sanders and his engineering students built the UEU.

Mr Sanders said all of his students had a hand in building the UEU over two weeks.

"We're open to all these sorts of things, if we can help, being a non-for-profit organisation," he said.

Mr Sanders said presenting the UEU to Ryder and his family was magnificent.

Ryder's family are now looking for people interested in helping with his ongoing therapy.

If you can help, phone Janene on 0427 878 887 or for information, visit

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