Architects launch crowd-funding campaign to build ramps for children with cerebral palsy

A small architecture firm and a school near Monterrey, Mexico, have launched a campaign to help children with cerebral palsy by making their homes accessible.

The campaign, a collaboration between Barco Estudio and the Instituto Nuevo Amanecer, is seeking crowd-funding support for the construction of five "home adaptations" — including the construction of accessible ramps in place of stairs. But the creators of the campaign, Mas Libertad (translation: "more freedom"), say there are close to 500 poor families in Monterrey that are in need of similar renovations.

Javier Leal, a 25-year-old co-founder of Mas Libertad, says he hopes making homes accessible will help bring more dignity and equal opportunities to families with children with cerebral palsy, and inspire others to help.

"The project's goal is not only to improve these families' quality of life, but to generate awareness among the society about the reality we live in and how we can do something to help change lives," Leal wrote in an email to Yahoo News.

The group has raised more than $10,000 through its crowd-funding effort on, with a goal of $14,500 for the first five homes.

"One of the ideas behind our rally was to raise awareness within our community," Rodrigo Juarez, 25-year-old managing partner, explained. "We could have gone with a big company in Monterrey such as Cemex or Alfa and asked for a check; that is what local nonprofits normally do. The downside of that strategy is that very few people notice the problems within their communities and how people just like them can become part of the solution to those problems."

According to Juarez, the plan is to start at least two of the adaptations this month, with the first five scheduled to be completed by the end of the year and another five by mid-2014.