Ms. Wheelchair Virginia

Meet Allyson Hart

August 4, 2017

Allyson Hart is an avid member of the Salem Family YMCA with a mission to stay strong so she can live independently.

Allyson was born a healthy baby, but around the age of 1 she starting losing her balance and had a high grade fever. After lots of testing, Allyson was diagnosed with spastic quadriplegia hypertension of unknown origin.

In 2011, Allyson was at the Wilson Workforce and Rehabilitation Center. During her time there, she attended a Ms. Wheelchair competition, and was inspired by the program.

“When I saw the program I was amazed that there were women like me that could be heard and not looked upon differently,” said Hart.

Allyson took this inspiration and participated in the Ms. Wheelchair competition for the first time this year where she was named Ms. Wheelchair Virginia 2017-2018. The competition took place in Fishersville, VA and selects the most accomplished and articulate spokesperson for Virginians with disabilities. Recipients of this title must be able to communicate both the needs and the accomplishments of their community to the general public, the business community and the legislature.

Allyson’s platform for the Ms. Wheelchair competition was Never Stop Going for the Goal – You are Not Limited by What You Can Do. Her motto was Independence Overcomes Disability. Allyson lives by her motto every day and frequents the Y to maintain her independence.

“The YMCA helps with the strength in my legs so I can keep living on my own. I feel great when I workout. It builds my muscles and weight at the right level,” said Hart.

Allyson will go on to compete in the Ms. Wheelchair America Pageant August 14-20.

Independence Overcomes
A poem by Allyson Hart 

Go and go the distance
Never give up
Accomplishes what dreams are all about
Listen to your heart
No turning back
Thrive to achieve
Independence overcomes
Yes, it does
And so it does