SHORT HILLS, NJ, May 31, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Regina Blye Talk about by Dana Reeve the legacy of the National Paralysis Resource Center and its vision for the years to come.
I arrived at National Paralysis Resource Center (NPRC) this spring, twenty years after Dana Reeve first opened. As the new Director of Programs and Policy, my mission is to lead the work of NPRC here and now, but with the 20e current anniversary, I can’t help but think back to our beginnings.
Dana was determined to facilitate the struggle of families struggling to rebuild their lives after spinal cord injuries. The NPRC provided the urgently needed information and resources, and much more; he has shone a light where there was once darkness, giving a community knowledge and unwavering support.
Twenty years later, it’s clear to me and thousands of other people living with paralysis that Dana’s vision for the NPRC has captured something essential to all life: dignity. She understood what is too often forgotten by people who have no personal experience of disability: we deserve the same opportunities to define ourselves, to live and work independently, and to seek joy in any way we choose. .
I hope the future of the NPRC amplifies its past. We have built an extensive library for community members, including our extensive Paralysis Resource Guide and state-by-state contact information on everything from assistive technology lending libraries to adaptive sports teams. We connect people with peer mentorship and oversee community grants whose wider impact changes lives.
Our amazing team of Information Specialists have served more than 114,000 people, many of whom are coming to terms with a life altered by injury, illness or age. These are difficult times, but the constant compassion of our team not only guides these families to better days, but also creates a bond with the NPRC that often lasts a lifetime. For me, there is no better testimony to the strength of this organization than a community that chooses to turn to us again and again.
But when I think of those 114,000 people served so far, I also worry about who we are missing – people with paralysis whose lives could be healthier, more independent and better supported with the help of the NPRC. – if only they knew we were here.
It is crucial to extend our awareness-raising efforts to rural and minority populations. We will seek new collaborations with churches and community groups that can help carry out NPRC’s mission to those who need us. We are also updating our digital and print materials to be as inclusive and accessible as possible for those living with paralysis and other conditions, including limited vision.
Highlighting the health and economic disparities that continue to affect people with disabilities is another NPRC priority; in addition to resources, we’ve already created on how to find fulfilling jobs or overcome obstacles when seeking preventative care. We will increase our campaigns to raise awareness among policy makers of these inequalities defend for change.
We will ensure that our work can continue, uninterrupted, by building bridges with organizations whose commitment to our mission includes the funding and support to sustain it for decades to come.
I believe strongly in the spirit of partnership – with our exceptional team, with the Administration for Community Living and with the families we serve. The fundamental mission that inspired Dana Reeve remains true today. Then and now, NPRC is dedicated to supporting individuals and families through days filled with both challenge and joy, and lives that are constantly changing with age and new experiences. We will continue to be guided by the needs of our community and work tirelessly to reach everyone who needs us.
About Regina Blye
As Program and Policy Officer, Regina oversees the operations of the National Paralysis Resource Center developing and delivering programs that provide essential services and resources that help people lead healthy, independent lives.
Regina suffered a C6-C7 spinal cord injury when she was 10 years old. She brings more than two decades of disability policy and advocacy experience, making the move to Reeve to work more directly with people living with spinal cord injury and paralysis.
Prior to starting with Reeve, she ran the Independent Living Services program at Community Life Administration (ACL), monitoring compliance with the Rehabilitation Act and supervising 155 federal recipients. Prior to that, as executive director of the Texas State Independent Living Council, she expanded independent living initiatives across the state. His work has touched thousands of individuals and families living with disabilities and has been recognized by the President barack obama with a 2011 appointment to the United States Access Board, as Vice Chairman.
Regina earned her Bachelor of Science in Mass Communications at West Texas A&M University and a master’s degree in public affairs from the University of Texas at Austin.
About the Reeve Foundation
The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation is dedicated to healing spinal cord injuries by funding innovative research and improving the quality of life for individuals and families affected by paralysis. By bringing together the brightest minds in the field, we work tirelessly to accelerate scientific discovery in spinal cord research by investing in laboratories around the world. Additionally, through a cooperative agreement with the Administration for Community Living, the Reeve Foundation’s National Paralysis Resource Center (NPRC) promotes the health, well-being, and independence of people living with paralysis. , providing comprehensive information, resources and referral services helping more than 100,000 individuals and families since its launch in 2002. The Reeve Foundation is committed to raising the voice of our community and must achieve greater representation and independence. We meet the Better Business Bureau’s 20 standards for charitable accountability and hold the BBB Charitable Seal. For more information, please visit www.ChristopherReeve.org or call 800-225-0292.
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SOURCE Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation