Thanks to a $20,000 grant from the SCI CAN Foundation, On With Life will add additional outdoor-based therapy programs to their range of rehabilitation treatment options. The grant funds the purchase of permanent, outdoor therapy equipment that will be used in On With Life’s new outdoor therapeutic gardens. The new equipment will help persons served with strengthening, balance, coordination, sitting/standing and gait exercises. The benefits of outdoor therapy sessions are endless: the sunlight and fresh air, the sensation of different temperatures, the wind and various intensities of light and the sounds of the outdoors all have therapeutic benefits for individuals recovering from a brain injury.
The outdoor gardens are part of On With Life’s Life Forward Capital Campaign, which aims to increase and improve access to services and enhance the therapeutic property at On With Life. In addition to the gardens, areas of the project include an outpatient center, an on-site aquatic therapy pool, additional inpatient beds, a wellness center and property enhancements that will make facilities more efficient and environmentally friendly.
“Every day we are proud to live our mission of passionately serving and advocating for those living with brain injury,” said Julie Fidler Dixon, executive director at On With Life. “It is a great feeling when others see the importance in our mission, and we are thrilled to have a partner like the SCI CAN Foundation, which understands the importance of having the latest in therapy equipment available to those that we serve. This grant will make a real difference, and we are very grateful for this support.”
The SCI CAN Foundation was started by Chris Norton in the fall of 2012, two years after his spinal cord injury. Chris had been playing football for Luther College in October 2010 when he was severely injured while making a tackle on a kickoff, fracturing his C3-C4 vertebrae. After initially being told he had a 3% chance of ever regaining movement below the neck, Chris has defied the odds of recovery every step of the way. The Norton family sees great importance in having access to high quality therapy and they continue to look for ways to help other individuals going through a spinal cord or other neurological injury.