Challenge: Spina Bifida/ Paralysis

Sports: WCMX, Dance, Wheelchair Basketball, Track

Bio: Meet Mayli, a tenacious girl born with a neuro tube defect called Spina Bifida, which left her paralyzed from the waist down. She uses a wheelchair but that has never slowed her down, actually it has propelled her into a life of exciting adaptive sports! She currently does WCMX (wheelchair motor cross) and dance, she plays wheelchair basketball, and recently started wheelchair racing in track. She has never let her differences stop her from living an active life. Thanks to Challenged Athletes Foundation Mayli has been able to try all kinds of sports, like adaptive surfing, as well as meet many amazing athletes who inspire her to follow her dreams. She received her WCMX Boxwheelchair through the Kate Steinle grant through CAF. This piece of equipment changed her life forever! Not only did it help her excel in WCMX but also in her everyday life and dance as well.

Mayli has always been an active kid. I knew she was going to have a love for sports because she loved watching her big sister play soccer. She told us, “If I could walk I would play soccer!”. That’s when we knew she was ready to try sports. So we started looking for sports she could do. We started with cheerleading and dance. This girl loves to dance, everywhere we go even if there’s no music she is dancing. After a couple years of dance, Mayli and I decided to do something we had thought about for a while and start a wheelchair dance class. In 2015 we started Ayita Wheelchair Dance. Now 3 years later our class has grown and Mayli loves getting to mentor the new girls in class. In 2015 she also decided to try WCMX. I never thought my little girly girl was going to be a skater girl, but she fell in love with the sport. That same year she received her first Boxwheelchair from CAF! WCMX along with her Boxwheelchair has helped her better adapt to every day life. From getting herself up ramps to jumping curbs and stairs. She would rather jump the curb than take the ramp now. Through her sports and CAF, Mayli has formed life long friendships with people from all over the world. CAF has built Mayli’s confidence through equipment and exposure to new sports. There is nothing we could ever do to repay CAF for the gift they have given us! We are forever grateful for their big hearts and their drive to help people and kids with physical challenges stay active and thrive in life.

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