The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation announces that it has recently awarded a total of $704,732 in Quality of Life grants to 84 nonprofit organizations nationwide.
Conceived by the late Dana Reeve, the Quality of Life Grants Program supports fellow nonprofits that mirror the Reeve Foundation’s mission and commitment to foster community engagement, enhance independence, and promote life-changing initiatives, according to a news release from the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation.
The release explains that Quality of Life Program grants are awarded twice per year. The grants selected for the first cycle of 2015 include:
Teller Senior Coalition, Woodland Park, Colorado – $25,000.  Teller is the county’s only transportation service that offers free rides to seniors and low-income residents living with disabilities. The grant awarded will allow the organization to purchase an accessible van equipped with four-wheel-drive.  This provides individuals with paralysis who live in the rural mountain areas a safe and private form of transportation for attending doctor and therapy appointments, shopping for groceries and other necessities, and fostering community engagement.
Liberty Place, Whitehall, Montana – $7,758.  Working with Whitehall Public Transportation, Liberty Place assists with the only ADA-compliant, 12-passenger Para-Transit Bus in the rural 1,600-mile area. Liberty Place will provide wheelchair accessibility lifts, safe and efficient transportation, and curb-to-curb service for people living with disabilities, seniors, and all members of the community.
Broadscope Disability Services, Greenfield, Wisconsin – $4,625.  Broadscope offers transportation services for events and outings for the Women’s support group. The group was started 3 years ago by 15 female participants in the Independent Living Program who wanted to expand their social lives with structured, safe activities. In addition to meeting twice monthly for peer mentoring sessions, there are regularly scheduled outings such as bowling night, music and cultural festivals, karaoke night, and other social gatherings.
Bottineau Winter Park, North Dakota – $5,000. While accessible transportation was a key focus of the current grant cycle, there were several grants awarded to support adaptive recreational programs for children living with paralysis and their families. A grant was awarded to Bottineau Winter Park to support Annie’s House Adaptive Recreation Summer Program that includes an ADA-approved dock to allow individuals living with paralysis and their families better use of watercrafts such as canoes, kayaks, and paddleboards.
The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation Quality of Life Grants Program was created to address the myriad needs of children and adults living with paralysis, as well as provide assistance and education to their families and caregivers, according to the release.
Funded programs serve individuals living with spinal cord injury and other injuries, diseases or birth conditions, including but not limited to, stroke, spina bifida, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). By awarding grants to fellow nonprofits, the Reeve Foundation is able to support life-changing initiatives across the country that improve physical and emotional health, broaden community engagement, and increase independence, the release continues.
[Source(s): Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation, PR Newswire]