Reeve Foundation Grant Will Buy Mapping System to Prevent Pressure Problems

ST. MARY’S HOME FOR DISABLED CHILDREN RECEIVES $11,360 GRANT   FROM CHRISTOPHER AND DANA REEVE FOUNDATION FOR MAPPING SYSTEM TO PREVENT PRESSURE PROBLEMS

NORFOLK, Va. – August 15, 2008 – St. Mary’s Home for Disabled Children is proud to announce that it has received an $11,360 Quality of Life grant from the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation. This is one of about 100 grants totaling almost $800,000 the Reeve Foundation awarded to nonprofit organizations nationwide that help improve opportunities, access and day-to-day quality of life for individuals and their families. Since its inception in 1999, the program has awarded 1,454 grants totaling nearly $12 million.

St. Mary’s Home for Disabled Children will use the grant to buy the FSA 4D Complete Rehab Pressure Mapping Seating System to help prevent skin-pressure problems. Many of St. Mary’s children and young adults have cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injuries or other severely disabling conditions which cause delays in movement that can contribute to pressure problems. The computerized mapping seating system’s sensors collect data that will help St. Mary’s therapists determine how to configure wheelchairs, beds and other therapeutic equipment to provide healthy and comfortable support for each child.

“The pressure mapping system will help us monitor potential pressure problems—an integral part of care for people whose mobility is compromised,” said William C. Giermak, CEO of St. Mary’s Home for Disabled Children. “Alleviating pressure problems gives our children more freedom to experience fun and educational activities that all children want, such as summer camp, trips to museums and shopping at the mall, and the freedom to be with their peers in the community. The grant from the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation will help St. Mary’s continue to provide the best medical and personal attention for our children and to serve as a model of care for pediatric long-term-care facilities nationwide.”

“As the late Dana Reeve once stated, our Quality of Life grants are about freedom,” said Peter T. Wilderotter, president of the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation. “St. Mary’s Home for Disabled Children provides hope for individuals living with paralysis and their caregivers who are everyday striving to improve their physical and emotional well-being. We are honored to help St. Mary’s Home for Disabled Children continue the heartfelt mission that Dana Reeve herself started back in 1999.”

The Reeve Foundation’s Quality of Life grants are awarded in three categories—Actively Achieving, Bridging Barriers, Caring and Coping—and pay for programs worldwide that help people with paralysis become more fully integrated members of society. St. Mary’s grant is in the Bridging Barriers category. Some of the grants are funded through a cooperative agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Cooperative Agreement number 1U59DD000338). Numerous grants also were made possible through generous financial donations from ICAP, the world’s leading interdealer broker, and Alseres Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a leader in the development of diagnostic and therapeutic products for central nervous system disorders and nerve repair, specifically in spinal cord injury.

About the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation

The Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation is dedicated to curing spinal cord injury by supporting innovative research, and improving the quality of life for people living with paralysis through grants, information and advocacy.  For more information, please visit our website at www.ChristopherReeve.org or call 800-225-0292.

About St. Mary’s Home for Disabled Children

St. Mary’s Home for Disabled Children in Norfolk has been caring for Virginia children for almost 65 years and is the only pediatric long-term-care residential facility of its kind in the state and one of about 100 nationwide. St. Mary’s provides quality, around-the-clock, specialized care within a homelike environment for special children with severe disabilities so each child can achieve his or her full potential. The 92 children and young adults who live at the private, nonsectarian Home range in age from newborn to 21. For more information, please visit our website at www.saintmaryshome.org or call (757) 622-2208.

Contact:

Sonja Barisic, Marketing Communications Manager
St. Mary’s Home for Disabled Children
6171 Kempsville Circle, Norfolk, VA 23502
Office 757.622.2208 ext. 331
Mobile 757.412.7071
Email sbarisic@smhdc.org

Lin Lawson
Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation
800.225.0292
Email media@ChristopherReeve.org