5 grants totaling $371,307 awarded to programs focused on providing access to assistive equipment and technology

Short Hills, N.J. (April 18, 2018) – The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation Paralysis Resource Center (PRC) announced today that it has awarded a total of $371,307 in High Impact Innovative Assistive Technology Grants (HIIAT). Funding for these grants was made possible through the PRC’s cooperative agreement with the Administration for Community Living (ACL).

“In our third year of awarding these grants, it is exciting to see the new and innovative projects proposed to improve quality of life for underserved and rural populations that are living with paralysis,” said Maggie Goldberg, Vice President of Policy and Programs, Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation. “The improved access to assistive technology results in a significant impact for individuals living with paralysis and their families, and towards our goals of increasing inclusion and independence.”

“Assistive technology has tremendous potential to dramatically affect the lives of individuals living with paralysis and their families, said Donna Valente, Director of Quality of Life Grants. “I am gratified to witness the grantees put their plans into action.”

This cycle’s recipients of the HIIAT Grant include:

Assistive Technology Resource Centers (ATRC) of Hawaii-$75,000

Honolulu, HI

ATRC will expand its assistive technology demonstration and lending library to bring the demonstration program and provide assistive technology-related services to families of individuals living with paralysis in more remote locations on Oahu and to the outer islands and other islands in the Pacific, including American Samoa and Micronesia. ATRC will work with a network of agencies, including Aloha Independent Living Center, Rehabilitation Hospital of the Pacific, Center for Disability at University of Hawaii Manoa, Hawaii Aging and Disability Resource Center, and United Cerebral Palsy Association of Hawaii to provide culturally respectful assistive technology demonstrations on Oahu and the outer islands, and family members and caregivers will be integral in the experience. This project has the potential to impact over 14,000 residents of Hawaii living with paralysis-causing conditions and their families.

Crossroad Rehabilitation Center-$74,881

Indianapolis, IN

This HIIAT grant will help to support the Assistive Technology Mobile Unit (ATMU), a specially outfitted Fort Transit Van equipped to provide free device demonstrations to individuals referred through Rehabilitation Hospital of Indiana. The ATMU offers one-on-one technology device demonstrations that may help to improve the way individuals living with a spinal cord injury experience life activities. The ATMU will be equipped with a standard set of assistive technology devices commonly used by people with spinal cord injury and other conditions, and will also include equipment tailored specifically for each consumer. This project expects to directly impact 100 individuals living with spinal cord injury and other paralysis-causing conditions.

Florida Alliance for Assistive Services and Technology, Inc. (FAAST)- $75,000

Tallahassee, FL

FAAST will partner with the Florida Disabled Outdoor Association (FDOA) to offer a series of outdoor activity events focusing on exercise and outdoor recreation for individuals living with spinal cord injury in the rural areas of Florida. A minimum of twenty-five individuals living with paralysis will be directly impacted at each of the three activity days, with opportunities to actively participate with adaptive sports equipment, gather information, and leave with strategies on how to begin and maintain motivation to live a healthy, active lifestyle with exercise and outdoor recreation. Caregivers and family members will have opportunities to learn about the types of equipment that can play a vital role in their health, well-being and continued increase in independence.

North Carolina Assistive Technology Program (NCATP)-$71,618

Raleigh, NC

Portable ramps will be purchased and placed in each of the nine NCATP centers or partner agencies, ensuring that individuals with newly-acquired mobility impairments, and individuals with established mobility impairments who have been displaced from their homes due to adverse weather or emergency events, have safe access to their homes or the facility where they are sheltering. The project’s primary objectives are to ensure that individuals have a safe and timely transition from a healthcare facility or emergency shelter to their home or community by providing short-term ramp loans when the lack of a ramp is a barrier to the individual’s discharge or return home. It is expected that this project has the potential to impact hundreds of individuals living with paralysis and their families.

South Carolina Assistive Technology Program-$74,808

University of South Carolina School of Medicine

This HIIAT grant will support Eye Gaze Communications Solutions, a project that will improve access to eye gaze devices focused on improving communication for underserved, low-income South Carolinians living with paralysis caused by spinal cord injury, stroke, traumatic brain injury, ALS, and cerebral palsy. Partnerships will be created with agencies in South Carolina to identify individuals for which eye gaze technology will be appropriate, train them to use the devices through a personal demonstration, and train the caregivers and professional staff who provide care for the individuals with paralysis.

About the Reeve Foundation:

The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation is dedicated to curing spinal cord injury by funding innovative research and improving the quality of life for people living with paralysis through grants, information and advocacy. The Paralysis Resource Center (PRC) is the support side of the Reeve Foundation’s twin missions to provide “Today’s Care” and to strive for “Tomorrow’s Cure” and offers a free, comprehensive, national source of informational support for individuals living with paralysis and their caregivers. We meet all 20 of the Better Business Bureau’s standards for charity accountability and hold the BBB’s Charity Seal. For more information, please visit our website at www.ChristopherReeve.org or call 800-539-7309.

Media Contact:

Rita Gentles

(973) 379-2690 ext. 7123

rgentles@christopherreeve.org