I apologize in advance if this sounds like one of those "stories that moved the web". The reality is that it moved me, and even if I'm not used to giving space to communication "schemes" of this type, I believe the story deserves a fine exception. A group of Tennessee high school students made a feat of friendship and ingenuity by designing and building a robotic hand for a classmate with a problem.
A gesture that goes in a stubborn and opposite direction compared to these times that deprive us of everything: of sociality, of emotions, sometimes even of the mental freedom to feel safe. When he came to class at Henderson High School in Nashville last fall, Sergio Peralta he was trying to hide his not perfectly formed right hand. Let me rephrase it: he was ashamed of it. The XNUMX-year-old had always faced the same question: "What's wrong with your hand?". "I was born that way," he replied. This time she didn't feel like it, and so she hid her hand for a while, as if no one would ever find out. It didn't, of course, but when it came out, things didn't go the way he thought.
An unexpected help
When the news reached the engineering teacher's ears, Jeff Wilkins, spread instantly, and produced a strong reaction. Wilkins' students (and Sergio's classmates) made themselves completely available to "do a favor" for their friend. For four weeks they teamed up drawing, planning, 3D printing and customizing one prosthesis special. And at some point Sergio himself took part in the work. Eventually, it went viral: The Guardian, CBS, with the BBC, everyone took care of it. Me too now: after that, they are all good.
In the result, the whole truth behind the phrase "greatness is in the little things". Sergio was able to grip a baseball in his new "right hand" for the first time in his life. Sure, he had already adapted to doing everything with the "old hand", but not that: playing like that, he couldn't do that. Before.
A class of engineers
Henderson's student Leslie Jaramillio thinks this project perfectly represents the spirit of their engineering class. “We should be engineers, right? Inventing new ideas, solving problems”. The principal of him, Bob Cotter, shares: "it's what you do: you challenge yourself to turn abstract ideas into reality". A nice message of hope or not?
Sergio, who has lived on "less than one hand" for 15 years, is amazed. "I never expected so much kindness and creativity in a million years," he says. "This stuff changed my life." I hope that as an adult, you will change it to someone else. Good future, Sergio.