Go Baby Go! Milwaukee welcomes colleagues from Mexico to grow the program internationally

This past week, the Go Baby Go! Milwaukee team hosted visitors from the CIBAC Gait and Biomedical Engineering lab located at the ITESM (Monterey Institute of Technology) campus in Chihuahua, Mexico. The CIBAC team received training to build their own custom ride-on cars for children with special needs.

The CIBAC team is interested in launching the first Go Baby Go! Mexico program and joined colleagues at Marquette University and Children’s Wisconsin for three days of training and collaboration. The week consisted of hands-on modification training for each type of vehicle alongside engineers at Marquette, as well as a half-day of seating training at Children’s with physical therapy and occupational therapy professionals.

Dr. Karla Bustamante, a former postdoctoral fellow from Marquette who worked in the Orthopaedic & Rehabilitation Engineering Center (OREC: Marquette/Medical College of Wisconsin), runs the CIBAC lab in Mexico and has kept a close connection with Dr. Gerald Harris, director of Go Baby Go! Milwaukee. Bustamante, physical therapist Daniela Pacheco and their team will be working with local area schools and rehabilitation programs in their area to provide ride-on cars.

“The connections we’ve made through Go Baby Go! Milwaukee have had a lasting impact, and we are eager to train and support other groups who want to do this impactful work within their communities, too,” said Molly Erickson, an OREC Research Engineer at Marquette University who has managed the program since June 2020.

Go Baby Go! Milwaukee is a partnership between Children’s Wisconsin and OREC at Marquette University through the Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering. The program is dedicated to helping children with special needs gain more independent mobility with the use of custom motorized cars — free to all participating families. Go Baby Go! Milwaukee reached a new milestone this year, donating its 200th customized vehicle.