Tag Archives: Massachusetts

5th Honoree For The 6th Annual Boston Wounded Vet Run Announced

Thanks to some last minute donations The Boston Wounded Vet Run proudly announced the 5th honoree for the 6th Annual Boston Wounded Vet Ride: Marine Sgt Kirstie Ennis!
Kirstie lost her leg due to a helicopter crash in Afghanistan.
This upcoming May, we ride for her!

5th Honoree For The 6th Annual Boston Wounded Vet Run Announced

 

Massachusetts Gold Star Families Tree Dedication

Please join Governor Charlie Baker, Secretary Francisco Urena, Massachusetts Gold Star Families, Veterans Advocates and our State Legislators for the 4th Annual Massachusetts Gold Star Families Tree Dedication. The Tree will pay tribute to local Service Members who have given their lives in service to our Nation and to the families who continue to carry their legacy forward. Photos and messages from loved ones will be displayed on the tree and serve to remind us of the tremendous sacrifices made for our Freedoms.

Prior to the dedication (beginning at 12:30pm) Gold Star Families will have an opportunity to personalized ornaments that will be placed on the tree.

This project is a partnership between the Military Friends Foundation, the Gold Star Wives and Gold Star Mothers organizations. This event is open to the public. Please join us for a light lunch following the dedication.

For more information and family registration, please visit www.militaryfriends.org/goldstartree

Accessible Vehicles And Adaptive Mobility Equipment Q&A

Rear entry vs. side entry. Buying online. Buying used. What do you need to know to get maximum benefit for minimum expense?

Good information is the key to saving money and getting the most value for the dollar when making a big-ticket purchase like a wheelchair-accessible vehicle.

With that in mind, Seek out and find experts who truly care for answers to some common questions about adaptive mobility equipment.

Q: Can I just go to a car dealer down the street or do I need a certified mobility dealer?

A: Certified mobility dealers help consumers buy the right vehicle and adaptive mobility equipment to meet their mobility needs now and in the future. Future planning is especially important for people with muscle diseases that get progressively worse over time.

“There are so many different products out there, and technology has improved so much. We just want to help people make the right decision,” says Jim Sanders, president of Automotive Innovations based in Bridgewater, MA for over 25 years.

“Many times, consumers will go to a car dealer and buy [a vehicle] that can’t be modified or one that doesn’t fit their needs. And once you buy a vehicle, normally it’s very difficult to return it.”

The National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association (NMEDA), a nonprofit organization that provides consumer guidance and ensures quality and professionalism in the manufacturing and installation of mobility equipment. Members include mobility equipment dealers, manufacturers, driver rehabilitation specialists and other professionals.

NMEDA member-dealers must follow the safety standards established by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in addition to NMEDA’s own stringent guidelines.

Some dealers choose to enroll in NMEDA’s Quality Assurance Program (QAP), which requires them to adhere to national motor vehicle safety standards, and use proven quality control practices to yield the highest level of performance and safety. Automotive Innovations was the First Mobility Dealer in Massachusetts to enroll and exceed the safety standards.

“The QAP dealer is audited by an outside engineering firm to verify that technicians have been trained, make sure the dealer has insurance and make sure the facility is ADA-compliant,”

So it means the QAP dealer is going above and beyond.”

Other reasons to seek out a certified mobility equipment dealer include:

They provide a link to qualified service and repair, that it’s crucial to have done on a adapted vehicle serviced.

Some manufacturers of adapted vehicles sell directly to consumers, cutting costs by cutting out the middle man, says Jim Sanders, of VMi New England, based in Bridgewater, MA.

But expert assessment and “try before you buy” remain essentials for prospective buyers, with or without a dealer in the middle.

For example, We, a NMEDA QAP-certified member, send representatives to customers’ homes for assessment and test drives before they buy, and also offer unmatched service/maintenance to just about any modified vehicle including Rollx vans.

Q: Can I get a better price if I buy online rather than from a dealer?

A: As with any online shopping, the warning “buyer beware” rings true. Buying online without trying out different vehicles with different conversions can be a costly mistake. Furthermore there are many grey market converted vans being offered as quality conversions.

Online, clients are mostly shopping blind. Typically they have no idea how the vehicle they need will even work fro them, even if they have specific recommendations from a driver evaluator or occupational therapist.

“You definitely shouldn’t buy it online,” “There not trying to assess your needs by e-mail or over the phone. There just trying to sell you something.

Some online dealers even have a questionnaire on its Web site to try and give you the idea your getting what you need. But, it will never replace being able to go to a local mobility dealership and try the vans out first hand.

A mobility vehicle is probably the second-largest purchase after a house. You should see it, try it out, and make sure it’s something that will work for you. It’s horrible when people get something that they’re disappointed in.

Every vehicle is a little bit different — such as in the dimensions, electrical and fuel systems, or suspension modifications. “If you go online and buy [based] on price, you’re not really looking at the total package.”

While buying online maybe able to save money up front, it wont over the long term.

In addition to consumers missing out on the important local service contact that a mobility equipment dealer provides, these online deals or grey market vans are worth much less when it comes time to trade it in.

Where do you want to sit? If you plan to drive from your wheelchair, then a side-entry conversion is what you’ll need, unless you can transfer to the driver’s seat (rear entry). With a rear-entry conversion, the wheelchair user typically is positioned in the back or between two mid-row captain’s seats, while a side entry offers a wheelchair user multiple seating options in the driver, front passenger and middle sections.

Q: What are some common mistakes people make when buying a modified vehicle?

A: Manufacturers and mobility dealers agree that one of the most common — and costly — mistakes is buying the vehicle first and then shopping for the conversion or adaptive mobility equipment. Not all vehicles can be converted.

For example, If you purchase a minivan from a traditional car dealership you can hit a roadblock if it doesn’t meet specific requirements to have the floor lowered for a rear- or side-entry conversion.

Q: What are some good questions to ask a dealer or manufacturer?

A: Although buying a modified vehicle can be “a daunting experience,” says VMI’s Monique McGivney, it also can be “exciting and fun when you walk in armed with good questions and information.”

Prior to getting an assessment from a mobility dealer, evaluate your needs and try answering the following questions:

  • What vehicle will fit in my garage?
  • What kind of parking issues will I encounter where I live?
  • What is the size and weight of my wheelchair?
  • What is my seated height in the wheelchair?
  • How many people will ride in the vehicle?
  • In what part of the vehicle do I want to sit?
  • Will I be able to drive with hand controls?
  • Do I want a full-size van, minivan or alternative vehicle?
  • Do I want manual or power equipment?
  • Will an in-floor ramp or fold-out ramp meet my needs?
  • What is my budget, and do I have access to supplemental funding?

The first question mobility dealers usually ask a client is: “What is your seated height in the wheelchair?” From there, the dealer can advise whether a full-size or minivan is appropriate, and what kind of conversion is needed.

Be sure to ask the dealer about the warranty and how the vehicle can be serviced.

Q: Which is better: rear entry or side entry?

A: The most important difference between a rear- and side-entry conversion is that with a rear entry, wheelchair users can’t drive from their wheelchairs nor can they ride in the front passenger seat. From there, the choice comes down to personal preference and budget.

In recent years, because of quality, convenience and cost, there’s been a shift toward side entry vehicles. Rear entry is more of a frugal modification, involves a less of conversion process and is typically a little less expensive than a side-entry conversion.

Many people prefer side entry with a in-floor conversion for many safety reasons additionally because they can park almost anywhere and not worry deploying the ramp out into traffic. Also, side entry allows the consumer to ride in the passengers front position along with maintain the rear seats in a minivan because the conversion doesn’t affect that area.

Rear entry is harder to get out of compared to a side-entry.

Anyway you look at it side-entry vehicles are more versatile. For example, side entry allows someone with a progressively worsening condition to use the vehicle for a longer period of time. A wheelchair user can start out driving from his or her chair, and then move to several other positions in the vehicle when no longer able to drive.

Side-entry conversions typically are a little more expensive than rear-entry because they’re more intrusive and labor intensive. For example, with a minivan, the entire floor and frame must be removed and replaced with a lowered floor and new frame.

Q: What’s the difference between a fold-out ramp and in-floor ramp?

A: This decision comes down to safety, aesthetics, convenience and cost.

A fold-out ramp folds up into the vehicle, takes up valuable space in the passengers front area and must be deployed whenever the door is opened.

The in-floor ramp slides under the floor, so it safer for anyone seated in the passengers front position, mid-ship position, there’s no obstruction to the door, and other passengers can enter and exit without deploying the ramp. In-floor ramps only are currently only available for side-entry minivan conversions, and there is even a manual (unpowered) option.

In-floor ramps in addition to being safer will generally provide more room in the vehicle because there’s nothing blocking the doorway. The ramp is “out of sight, out of mind and may last longer because it doesn’t have to be deployed each time the side passenger door opens.

Fold-out ramps generally cost a little less than in-floor, and consumers can select from manual and power versions; a power fold-out ramp still costs less than an in-floor ramp.

If an in-floor ramp system breaks down or the vehicle loses power, VMI’s in-floor ramp systems have a backup system (sure-deploy) that bypasses the vehicle’s battery.

A lot of people just feel more secure knowing there isn’t a fold-out ramp next to them in the event of a accident.

Q: I use a wheelchair, but a van or minivan just isn’t “me.” Are they my only options?

A: You have some choices.

Lowered-floor conversions with fold-out ramps can be done on the Honda Element, Chrysler PT Cruiser and Toyota Scion. The conversions are small and don’t fit as many people.

Due to them being built on a much smaller scale, the ones we have seen have not been built with the same level of quality of mini van conversion. Parts availability and repairs have been a problem, some of the companies that converted them are out of business and or have no support for “something they used to build”

For those who prefer to keep their standard car rather than purchasing a modified vehicle — and who can make the transfer from a wheelchair to a car seat — the answer may be as simple as a set of hand controls or a left foot gas pedal

Turning seats can be used in a wide range of vehicles, from sedans to SUVs and pickup trucks. A way to transport the wheelchair (like a rear lift) also is needed.

The rate at which your disease symptoms are worsening is one thing to consider when looking at turning seats — is it likely you’ll be able to transfer and ride in a car seat for many more years? Also, be sure to check with a mobility dealer to determine if your vehicle can accommodate a turning seat and a wheelchair lift.

Q: Why are modified vehicles so darned expensive?

A: A vehicle conversion can cost consumers upwards of $27,000 — and that’s just the cost for the conversion, not the vehicle. The total package can run between $45,000 and $80,000 — or more.

Besides the cost of the components, the reason it’s so pricey is that basically there is a lot of work involved to build a quality vehicle.

Modified vehicles from certified manufacturers and dealers must meet NHTSA’s Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS). That means all modified vehicles must be properly crash tested. (To learn more, visit www.nhtsa.dot.gov.)

It’s quite a labor-intensive process because of the customization. When you make structural modifications to a vehicle, you have to go through all of the crash testing, and you have to show that the vehicle is compliant again, and those tests are very expensive.

Most of the time lowering the floor in a minivan requires replacing or moving the fuel tank. Once the conversion is finished, the vehicle still has to meet the original requirements for evaporative emissions, in addition to NHTSA requirements.

Q: How can I pay less?

A: Consumers have some options.

Many consumers cut costs by purchasing pre-owned vehicles with new conversions, typically saving around $10,000 to $12,000.

The previous van owner already has absorbed the depreciation hit on a new van, which essentially occurs right after you’ve driven off the dealer’s lot.

Buying used can be beneficial for first-time buyers who want to try out a vehicle for a few years before buying new.

But if you plan to buy used, do some research and make sure the vehicle is structurally sound including the conversion. Ask for a vehicle history (CARFAX) report, and get the vehicle inspected by a mobility dealer to ensure it’s in good shape and was well taken care of.

Q: How do people manage to pay for it?

A: Many consumers used home equity loans to purchase a vehicle and adaptive equipment. But with home values decreasing.

Many dealers and manufacturers work with lending institutions that offer extended-term financing, including 10-year loans, allowing consumers to make lower, more affordable monthly payments. The downside is that consumers are locked into the vehicle for 10 years, and end up paying more in interest.

If you finance for 10 years, and you’re not going to keep the vehicle for that amount of time, you’re going to lose money when you try to sell or trade it because you haven’t paid off much of the balance.

When you buy a new vehicle, many car manufacturers offer mobility reimbursement programs (up to $1,000) to help offset the cost for the purchase and installation of adaptive equipment.

State Disability and Health Programs

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) state-based disability and health programs inform policy and practice at the state level. These programs ensure that individuals with disabilities are included in ongoing state disease prevention, health promotion, and emergency response activities.

CDC supports 18 state-based programs to promote equity in health, prevent chronic disease, and increase the quality of life for people with disabilities. Each program customizes its activities to meet its state’s needs, which broadens expertise and information sharing among states.

The programs’ goals are to:

  • Enhance program infrastructure and capacity.
  • Improve state level surveillance and monitoring activities.
  • Increase awareness of health-related disability policy initiatives.
  • Increase health promotion opportunities for people with disabilities.
  • Improve access to health care services for people with disabilities.
  • Improve emergency preparedness for people with disabilities.
  • Effectively monitor and evaluate program activities.

The goals of the state disability and health programs align with those of Healthy People 2020 related to disability:

  • Removing barriers to participation in social, spiritual, recreational, community and civic activities.
  • Improving access to primary care, and health and wellness programs.
  • Identifying people with disabilities in data systems.
  • Increasing surveillance and health promotion programs.
  • Providing graduate-level courses in disability and health.

States funded by CDC for Disability and Health Programs:

  • Alabama
  • Alaska
  • Arkansas
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Illinois
  • Iowa
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Montana
  • New Hampshire
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oregon
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina


Alabama

Program activities include:

  • Promoting inclusion of persons with disabilities in all aspects of policy development, planning, and execution of state based public health programs.
  • Using Federally Qualified Healthcare Centers to assist with capacity assessment of ability to meet the needs of those with disabilities and determine barriers to inclusiveness.
  • Increasing health promotion opportunities for persons with disabilities through adaptation of existing public health programs, such as Scale Back Alabama, and increasing the number of children with disabilities who participate in mainstream physical education and after-school programs.

 

Alaska
Program activities include:

  • Developing accurate and timely outreach for Alaskans experiencing disability and their care providers.
  • Building the capacity of a cross-agency disability advisory council that reviews and evaluates program activities, assists with sustainability plans, and provides recommendations for policy change.
  • Providing technical assistance, training, and other support for existing community-wide initiatives designed to improve the health of Alaskans experiencing disability.

The Alaska Disability and Health Program is a collaboration between the State of Alaska’s Department of Health and Social Services, Division of Public Health, Section of Women’s, Children’s, and Family Health and the Governor’s Council on Disabilities and Special Education, and is housed in the Division of Public Health.

 

Arkansas
Program activities include:

  • Enhancing program infrastructure and capacity through the expansion and support of an Advisory Board and increasing the representation of individuals with disabilities on public health program committees.
  • Improving state-level surveillance and monitoring by conducting a statewide needs assessment to look at the health status and access of people with disabilities, developing documents comparing demographics and health disparities of Arkansas and the U.S.
  • Increasing awareness of health-related disability policy initiatives through Disability Policy Summits; educating and supporting advocates on proposed policy initiatives and disseminating information to policy makers.
  • Increase health promotion opportunities for people with disabilities by supporting training that maximizes the health of people with disabilities and implementing health awareness and education campaigns.
  • Improving access to health care for people with disabilities by looking at the accessibility of healthcare facilities, and educating healthcare professionals through continued education, as well as internship placement for students in 11 different health related disciplines.
  • Improving emergency preparedness among people with disabilities by reviewing state emergency plans for accessibility, involving people with disabilities in county level planning, providing training, and ensuring shelter access by identifying and surveying pre-designated shelter sites.

The Arkansas Disability and Health Program is housed in the Partners for Inclusive Communities at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.

 

Delaware
Program activities include:

  • Creating systems-level change through active participation on statewide councils, committees, and workgroups that are addressing health and disability issues and implementation of goals and objectives of the Plan for Action, A Strategic Plan for Delaware to Promote Health and Prevent Secondary Health Conditions in Individuals with Disabilities.
  • Providing technical assistance for health care, fitness, and recreation providers and facilities to improve accessibility and inclusion of individuals with disabilities in health examinations, exercise programs, and recreation activities.
  • Providing education, awareness raising, and resources sharing through the program’s interactive website www.gohdwd.org and email newsletters to individuals with disabilities, family members, professionals, policymakers, and legislators.

The Delaware Disability and Health Program, Healthy Delawareans with Disabilitiesis housed in the Center for Disabilities Studies at the University of Delaware.

Florida
Program activities include:

  • Promoting breast cancer awareness and encouraging recommended screening among women 40 years of age or older who have a disability (the Right to Know Campaign) with partners such as the Florida Centers for Independent Living and the Florida Area Health Education Centers.
  • Increasing the capacity of health care providers in Florida to provide quality health care to people with disabilities by training medical students, and medical and allied health professionals.
  • Increasing the quantity and quality of disability and health-related data in Florida and providing the epidemiologic capacity to analyze these data.

The Florida Disability and Health Program is housed in the Office of Disability and Health at the University of Florida.

Illinois
Program activities include:

  • Monitoring the health status and health-related behaviors of people with disabilities, and sustaining and expanding the statewide infrastructure to prevent secondary conditions and promote the health of people with disabilities in Illinois.
  • Increasing evidence-based health promotion and prevention opportunities and resources available for people with disabilities to promote healthy lifestyles and reduce the risk of chronic disease and secondary conditions.
  • Assisting health professionals to gain the knowledge and tools necessary to work effectively with people with a disability to increase the availability and accessibility of health promotion and prevention services, interventions, and resources.

The Illinois Disability and Health Program is housed in the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Iowa
Program activities include:

  • Developing a statewide network of community providers that offer the Living Well with a Disability intervention program.
  • Identifying evidence-based strategies to increase awareness and education opportunities for health professionals.
  • Promoting accessible health care and support services to increase independence among people with disabilities.

The Iowa Disability and Health Program is housed in the Iowa Department of Public Health.

Massachusetts
Program activities include:

  • Designing and implementing training and technical assistance for health care providers and public health programs on the Americans with Disabilities Act to ensure inclusion of people with disabilities in state funded programs, services, and activities.
  • Providing the knowledge base needed to design programs related to healthy aging, health and disability, and secondary health conditions.
  • Working with state agencies and community partners to identify, implement, and evaluate evidence-based health promotion programs among older adults and people with disabilities (for example, the Stanford Chronic Disease Self-Management Program).

The Massachusetts Disability and Health Program is housed in the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.

Michigan
Program activities include:

The Michigan Health Promotion for People with Disabilities Program is housed in the Michigan Department of Community Health.

Montana
Program activities include:

  • Recruiting, training, and supporting disability advisors to participate in Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services advisory groups and integrate disability and health into public health planning and evaluation processes.
  • Recruiting, training, and supporting state disability leaders to assess and improve the accessibility of community health and fitness programs.
  • Conducting Living Well with a Disability, an eight-week peer-facilitated, health promotion workshop with Montana’s four Centers for Independent Living.

The Montana Disability and Health Program is a collaboration between the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services and the University of Montana Rural Institute, a Center for Excellence in Disability Education, Research, and Service.

New Hampshire
Program activities include:

  • Training students, self-advocates, families and professionals through coursework, seminars, workshops and conferences.
  • Providing technical assistance to organizations and individuals to improve their capacity to include all citizens.
  • Serving as a resource for information to policymakers and government officials.
  • Disseminating information to families, consumers, community members and professionals via books, monographs, articles, videos, newsletters, the Internet and press coverage, including TV, radio, newspapers and consumer forums.
  • Conducting applied research to better understand and address the needs of individuals with disabilities.
  • Engaging in collaborative activities and joint projects with organizations that share common goals.

The Institute on Disability (IOD) is housed within New Hampshire’s University Center for Excellence on Disability (UCED).

New York
Program activities include:

  • Implementing the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) Center for Community Health Inclusion Policy, which requires all Center for Community Health programs to ensure accessibility and inclusion for people with disabilities throughout all funding opportunities. The proposed activities to implement inclusive local and statewide public health programs must also include an evaluation of the effect and reach of the policy.
  • Educating and training NYSDOH program managers, primary program implementation staff, NYSDOH contractors and partners about the health disparities experienced by people with disabilities and providing strategies, resources, and potential partners that will enable the integration of people with disabilities in their program areas.
  • Supporting an advisory body comprising individuals with disabilities, other state agencies, community-based organizations, and providers to inform program activities, as well as representing multiple external agency advisory committees to direct consideration of health care and health promotion needs of people with disabilities.

The New York Disability and Health Program is housed in the New York State Department of Health.

North Carolina
Program activities include:

  • Supporting the collection, analysis, and dissemination of data on people with an intellectual or developmental disability, or both, to better assess the health status of North Carolina adults.
  • Promoting accessible environments to support full community participation and engaging people with disabilities by developing accessibility checklists for health care practices and by providing training on adaptive and inclusive fitness and how to remove barriers to fitness facilities.
  • Increasing access to domestic violence and sexual assault services for people with disabilities with the implementation of adaptive equipment and enhanced disability awareness among domestic violence and sexual assault agencies.

The North Carolina Disability and Health Program is housed in the North Carolina Office on Disability and Health, and is a collaboration between the Division of Public Health of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

North Dakota
Program activities include:

  • Forming a consumer-driven advisory council that reviews the progress of the program activities, reviews data related to the health of people with disabilities, assists with development of a strategic plan, and provides recommendations for addressing issues related to the health and wellness of North Dakota citizens with disabilities.
  • Reducing health disparities in the areas of obesity, diabetes, and tobacco use among people with disabilities.
  • Ensuring people have accurate information on disability and health issues and promoting communication, planning, and implementation of health- and disability-related services across service systems.

The North Dakota Disability and Health Program, named the Disability Health Project, is a collaboration between the North Dakota Center for Persons with Disabilities at Minot State University; the Center for Rural Health at the University of North Dakota; and the North Dakota State Health Department, Division of Chronic Disease, Office for the Elimination of Health Disparities.

Ohio
Program activities include:

  • Improving state-level surveillance and monitoring activities with epidemiologic expertise from the Government Resource Center (GRC).
  • Advancing health-related disability policy initiatives in Ohio.
  • Promoting the health of people with disabilities through demonstration projects and train-the-trainer sessions.
  • Improving access to health care for people with disabilities through our partnership with the Ohio Association of Community Health Centers.
  • Revising Ohio Emergency Management Plans and committees to be inclusive of people with disabilities, increasing the number of PWD who have emergency plans, training first responders on the needs of PWD, and improving the accessibility of emergency shelters.

The Ohio Disability and Health Program is composed of the Ohio Department of Health, the Ohio State University Nisonger Center, the University of Cincinnati UCEDD, and the Ohio Colleges of Medicine Government Resource Center (GRC).

Oregon
Program activities include:

  • Conducting Healthy Lifestyles workshops for people with disabilities (in English and Spanish) to improve quality of life in partnership with the Centers for Independent Living and other disability organizations.
  • Implementing the Right to Know campaign and breast health education events, providing mammography technologist training, and assessing Oregon’s mammography clinics to improve breast cancer awareness and screening among women with disabilities.
  • Providing individualized emergency preparedness training for Oregonians with disabilities as well as working with key community and state partners to ensure that emergency preparedness planning and training efforts include topics relevant to the health and safety of people with disabilities.

The Oregon Disability and Health Program is housed in the Oregon Office on Disability and Health at Oregon Health and Science University.

Rhode Island
Program activities include:

  • Promoting the health and wellness for people with disabilities through inclusive self-management, evidence-based programs.
  • Monitoring, supporting and implementing effective healthcare transition from pediatric to adulthood within a positive youth development framework that promotes self-determination and an activated patient model.
  • Providing professional development for practitioners working with people with disabilities, including training, targeted technical assistance, and access to assistive technology.
  • Addressing special needs of people with disabilities in health promotion programs, health strategic planning, emergency preparedness, preventative health screening programs, and healthcare facility access.
  • Increasing access to quality of health-related data of people with disabilities in Rhode Island and using epidemiology and evaluation analysis to monitor the health disparities.

The Rhode Island Disability and Health Program is housed in the Office of Special Needs of the Health Disparities and Access to Care Team at the Rhode Island Department of Health.

South Carolina
Program activities include:

  • Increasing the knowledge of professionals and paraprofessionals in South Carolina to meet the preventive, primary, and secondary health needs of people with disabilities.
  • Conducting ongoing surveillance with Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) and administrative datasets as secondary sources via the South Carolina Disability Cube Project.
  • Working to achieve more livable communities for people with disabilities by facilitating access to primary care physician offices, increasing access to fitness and recreation facilities, and working with community planning agencies to improve outdoor space using principals of universal design.

The South Carolina Disability and Health Program is housed in the University of South Carolina School of Medicine.

Third Honoree For The 6th Annual Boston Wounded Vet Run Announced

The Boston Wounded Vet Run proudly announced the third honoree for the 6th Annual Boston Wounded Vet Ride: Army Specialist Sean Pesce of West Haven, CT!
Sean was shot 13 times Afghanistan and is now paralyzed from the waist down.
This upcoming May, we ride for him!

Third Honoree For The 6th Annual Boston Wounded Vet Run Announced

Second Honoree For The 6th Annual Boston Wounded Vet Run Announced

The Boston Wounded Vet Run proudly announced the second honoree for the 6th Annual Boston Wounded Vet Ride: SSG James Clark of Hinsdale, NH!
James lost his leg and part of a foot in an 2009 Afghanistan deployment.
In 2016 we ride for him!

Second Honoree For The 6th Annual Boston Wounded Vet Run Announced

Wheelchair DanceFit: A Program of Aero, Inc.

Aero, Inc. is a not-for-profit integrated mixed abilities dance company located in Greater Boston area of Massachusetts, USA.

Aero, Inc. was founded by Maryan Amaral in 1997. This nonprofit is the first integrated dance company in Greater Boston to perform in local and national venues. They lead workshops and performances in schools, colleges, parks, private and public venues.

” Everyone who wants to dance can dance.”

For more information, contact: maryan@aeroinc.org or visit the website

First Honoree For The 6th Annual Boston Wounded Vet Run Announced

The Boston Wounded Vet Run proudly announced the first honoree for the 6th Annual Boston Wounded Vet Ride: Peter Damon of Middleborough, MA!
Peter lost both his arms in Iraq.
In 2016 we ride for him!

Peter Damon

The Nathan Hale Veterans Outreach Centers

The Nathan Hale  Foundation was incorporated on April 4, 2006.  The Foundation and  Veterans Outreach Centers were  founded solely by Christopher C. Hart President/Founder and Executive Director of both the Plymouth and Middleboro Massachusetts offices. The Nathan Hale Veterans Outreach Center is non-profit, tax-exempt, 501 c(3) organization.

Main Office – Plymouth
All transportation appointments and information
763 State Road, Plymouth MA 02360
508-224-0100

Middleboro Office
260 Centre Street, Middleboro MA 02364
781-923-0900

They believe it is their civic duty to help the troops and their families who face personal hardships while serving our country.

The Nathan Hale Veterans Outreach Center provides these programs FREE of charge to Veterans and their families:

ALL SERVICES ARE FREE!

  • Transportation to and from medical appointments
  • Hale to the Arts ~ Painting Classes
  • Veterans Appreciation Dinners
  • Day Outings
  • Chair Massage
  • Acupuncture
  • Food Pantry
  • Cycling Program
  • Clothing Outlet
  • Combat Stress/ Counseling

For more information please visit their website: TheNathanHaleVeteransOutreachCenter.com

 

Tomorrow Is The Greater Boston Stand Down Event!

Greater Boston Stand Down Event

State Disability and Health Programs

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) state-based disability and health programs inform policy and practice at the state level. These programs ensure that individuals with disabilities are included in ongoing state disease prevention, health promotion, and emergency response activities.

CDC supports 18 state-based programs to promote equity in health, prevent chronic disease, and increase the quality of life for people with disabilities. Each program customizes its activities to meet its state’s needs, which broadens expertise and information sharing among states.

The programs’ goals are to:

  • Enhance program infrastructure and capacity.
  • Improve state level surveillance and monitoring activities.
  • Increase awareness of health-related disability policy initiatives.
  • Increase health promotion opportunities for people with disabilities.
  • Improve access to health care services for people with disabilities.
  • Improve emergency preparedness for people with disabilities.
  • Effectively monitor and evaluate program activities.

The goals of the state disability and health programs align with those of Healthy People 2020 related to disability:

  • Removing barriers to participation in social, spiritual, recreational, community and civic activities.
  • Improving access to primary care, and health and wellness programs.
  • Identifying people with disabilities in data systems.
  • Increasing surveillance and health promotion programs.
  • Providing graduate-level courses in disability and health.

States funded by CDC for Disability and Health Programs:

  • Alabama
  • Alaska
  • Arkansas
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Illinois
  • Iowa
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Montana
  • New Hampshire
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oregon
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina


Alabama

Program activities include:

  • Promoting inclusion of persons with disabilities in all aspects of policy development, planning, and execution of state based public health programs.
  • Using Federally Qualified Healthcare Centers to assist with capacity assessment of ability to meet the needs of those with disabilities and determine barriers to inclusiveness.
  • Increasing health promotion opportunities for persons with disabilities through adaptation of existing public health programs, such as Scale Back Alabama, and increasing the number of children with disabilities who participate in mainstream physical education and after-school programs.

 

Alaska
Program activities include:

  • Developing accurate and timely outreach for Alaskans experiencing disability and their care providers.
  • Building the capacity of a cross-agency disability advisory council that reviews and evaluates program activities, assists with sustainability plans, and provides recommendations for policy change.
  • Providing technical assistance, training, and other support for existing community-wide initiatives designed to improve the health of Alaskans experiencing disability.

The Alaska Disability and Health Program is a collaboration between the State of Alaska’s Department of Health and Social Services, Division of Public Health, Section of Women’s, Children’s, and Family Health and the Governor’s Council on Disabilities and Special Education, and is housed in the Division of Public Health.

 

Arkansas
Program activities include:

  • Enhancing program infrastructure and capacity through the expansion and support of an Advisory Board and increasing the representation of individuals with disabilities on public health program committees.
  • Improving state-level surveillance and monitoring by conducting a statewide needs assessment to look at the health status and access of people with disabilities, developing documents comparing demographics and health disparities of Arkansas and the U.S.
  • Increasing awareness of health-related disability policy initiatives through Disability Policy Summits; educating and supporting advocates on proposed policy initiatives and disseminating information to policy makers.
  • Increase health promotion opportunities for people with disabilities by supporting training that maximizes the health of people with disabilities and implementing health awareness and education campaigns.
  • Improving access to health care for people with disabilities by looking at the accessibility of healthcare facilities, and educating healthcare professionals through continued education, as well as internship placement for students in 11 different health related disciplines.
  • Improving emergency preparedness among people with disabilities by reviewing state emergency plans for accessibility, involving people with disabilities in county level planning, providing training, and ensuring shelter access by identifying and surveying pre-designated shelter sites.

The Arkansas Disability and Health Program is housed in the Partners for Inclusive Communities at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.

 

Delaware
Program activities include:

  • Creating systems-level change through active participation on statewide councils, committees, and workgroups that are addressing health and disability issues and implementation of goals and objectives of the Plan for Action, A Strategic Plan for Delaware to Promote Health and Prevent Secondary Health Conditions in Individuals with Disabilities.
  • Providing technical assistance for health care, fitness, and recreation providers and facilities to improve accessibility and inclusion of individuals with disabilities in health examinations, exercise programs, and recreation activities.
  • Providing education, awareness raising, and resources sharing through the program’s interactive website www.gohdwd.org and email newsletters to individuals with disabilities, family members, professionals, policymakers, and legislators.

The Delaware Disability and Health Program, Healthy Delawareans with Disabilitiesis housed in the Center for Disabilities Studies at the University of Delaware.

Florida
Program activities include:

  • Promoting breast cancer awareness and encouraging recommended screening among women 40 years of age or older who have a disability (the Right to Know Campaign) with partners such as the Florida Centers for Independent Living and the Florida Area Health Education Centers.
  • Increasing the capacity of health care providers in Florida to provide quality health care to people with disabilities by training medical students, and medical and allied health professionals.
  • Increasing the quantity and quality of disability and health-related data in Florida and providing the epidemiologic capacity to analyze these data.

The Florida Disability and Health Program is housed in the Office of Disability and Health at the University of Florida.

Illinois
Program activities include:

  • Monitoring the health status and health-related behaviors of people with disabilities, and sustaining and expanding the statewide infrastructure to prevent secondary conditions and promote the health of people with disabilities in Illinois.
  • Increasing evidence-based health promotion and prevention opportunities and resources available for people with disabilities to promote healthy lifestyles and reduce the risk of chronic disease and secondary conditions.
  • Assisting health professionals to gain the knowledge and tools necessary to work effectively with people with a disability to increase the availability and accessibility of health promotion and prevention services, interventions, and resources.

The Illinois Disability and Health Program is housed in the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Iowa
Program activities include:

  • Developing a statewide network of community providers that offer the Living Well with a Disability intervention program.
  • Identifying evidence-based strategies to increase awareness and education opportunities for health professionals.
  • Promoting accessible health care and support services to increase independence among people with disabilities.

The Iowa Disability and Health Program is housed in the Iowa Department of Public Health.

Massachusetts
Program activities include:

  • Designing and implementing training and technical assistance for health care providers and public health programs on the Americans with Disabilities Act to ensure inclusion of people with disabilities in state funded programs, services, and activities.
  • Providing the knowledge base needed to design programs related to healthy aging, health and disability, and secondary health conditions.
  • Working with state agencies and community partners to identify, implement, and evaluate evidence-based health promotion programs among older adults and people with disabilities (for example, the Stanford Chronic Disease Self-Management Program).

The Massachusetts Disability and Health Program is housed in the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.

Michigan
Program activities include:

The Michigan Health Promotion for People with Disabilities Program is housed in the Michigan Department of Community Health.

Montana
Program activities include:

  • Recruiting, training, and supporting disability advisors to participate in Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services advisory groups and integrate disability and health into public health planning and evaluation processes.
  • Recruiting, training, and supporting state disability leaders to assess and improve the accessibility of community health and fitness programs.
  • Conducting Living Well with a Disability, an eight-week peer-facilitated, health promotion workshop with Montana’s four Centers for Independent Living.

The Montana Disability and Health Program is a collaboration between the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services and the University of Montana Rural Institute, a Center for Excellence in Disability Education, Research, and Service.

New Hampshire
Program activities include:

  • Training students, self-advocates, families and professionals through coursework, seminars, workshops and conferences.
  • Providing technical assistance to organizations and individuals to improve their capacity to include all citizens.
  • Serving as a resource for information to policymakers and government officials.
  • Disseminating information to families, consumers, community members and professionals via books, monographs, articles, videos, newsletters, the Internet and press coverage, including TV, radio, newspapers and consumer forums.
  • Conducting applied research to better understand and address the needs of individuals with disabilities.
  • Engaging in collaborative activities and joint projects with organizations that share common goals.

The Institute on Disability (IOD) is housed within New Hampshire’s University Center for Excellence on Disability (UCED).

New York
Program activities include:

  • Implementing the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) Center for Community Health Inclusion Policy, which requires all Center for Community Health programs to ensure accessibility and inclusion for people with disabilities throughout all funding opportunities. The proposed activities to implement inclusive local and statewide public health programs must also include an evaluation of the effect and reach of the policy.
  • Educating and training NYSDOH program managers, primary program implementation staff, NYSDOH contractors and partners about the health disparities experienced by people with disabilities and providing strategies, resources, and potential partners that will enable the integration of people with disabilities in their program areas.
  • Supporting an advisory body comprising individuals with disabilities, other state agencies, community-based organizations, and providers to inform program activities, as well as representing multiple external agency advisory committees to direct consideration of health care and health promotion needs of people with disabilities.

The New York Disability and Health Program is housed in the New York State Department of Health.

North Carolina
Program activities include:

  • Supporting the collection, analysis, and dissemination of data on people with an intellectual or developmental disability, or both, to better assess the health status of North Carolina adults.
  • Promoting accessible environments to support full community participation and engaging people with disabilities by developing accessibility checklists for health care practices and by providing training on adaptive and inclusive fitness and how to remove barriers to fitness facilities.
  • Increasing access to domestic violence and sexual assault services for people with disabilities with the implementation of adaptive equipment and enhanced disability awareness among domestic violence and sexual assault agencies.

The North Carolina Disability and Health Program is housed in the North Carolina Office on Disability and Health, and is a collaboration between the Division of Public Health of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

North Dakota
Program activities include:

  • Forming a consumer-driven advisory council that reviews the progress of the program activities, reviews data related to the health of people with disabilities, assists with development of a strategic plan, and provides recommendations for addressing issues related to the health and wellness of North Dakota citizens with disabilities.
  • Reducing health disparities in the areas of obesity, diabetes, and tobacco use among people with disabilities.
  • Ensuring people have accurate information on disability and health issues and promoting communication, planning, and implementation of health- and disability-related services across service systems.

The North Dakota Disability and Health Program, named the Disability Health Project, is a collaboration between the North Dakota Center for Persons with Disabilities at Minot State University; the Center for Rural Health at the University of North Dakota; and the North Dakota State Health Department, Division of Chronic Disease, Office for the Elimination of Health Disparities.

Ohio
Program activities include:

  • Improving state-level surveillance and monitoring activities with epidemiologic expertise from the Government Resource Center (GRC).
  • Advancing health-related disability policy initiatives in Ohio.
  • Promoting the health of people with disabilities through demonstration projects and train-the-trainer sessions.
  • Improving access to health care for people with disabilities through our partnership with the Ohio Association of Community Health Centers.
  • Revising Ohio Emergency Management Plans and committees to be inclusive of people with disabilities, increasing the number of PWD who have emergency plans, training first responders on the needs of PWD, and improving the accessibility of emergency shelters.

The Ohio Disability and Health Program is composed of the Ohio Department of Health, the Ohio State University Nisonger Center, the University of Cincinnati UCEDD, and the Ohio Colleges of Medicine Government Resource Center (GRC).

Oregon
Program activities include:

  • Conducting Healthy Lifestyles workshops for people with disabilities (in English and Spanish) to improve quality of life in partnership with the Centers for Independent Living and other disability organizations.
  • Implementing the Right to Know campaign and breast health education events, providing mammography technologist training, and assessing Oregon’s mammography clinics to improve breast cancer awareness and screening among women with disabilities.
  • Providing individualized emergency preparedness training for Oregonians with disabilities as well as working with key community and state partners to ensure that emergency preparedness planning and training efforts include topics relevant to the health and safety of people with disabilities.

The Oregon Disability and Health Program is housed in the Oregon Office on Disability and Health at Oregon Health and Science University.

Rhode Island
Program activities include:

  • Promoting the health and wellness for people with disabilities through inclusive self-management, evidence-based programs.
  • Monitoring, supporting and implementing effective healthcare transition from pediatric to adulthood within a positive youth development framework that promotes self-determination and an activated patient model.
  • Providing professional development for practitioners working with people with disabilities, including training, targeted technical assistance, and access to assistive technology.
  • Addressing special needs of people with disabilities in health promotion programs, health strategic planning, emergency preparedness, preventative health screening programs, and healthcare facility access.
  • Increasing access to quality of health-related data of people with disabilities in Rhode Island and using epidemiology and evaluation analysis to monitor the health disparities.

The Rhode Island Disability and Health Program is housed in the Office of Special Needs of the Health Disparities and Access to Care Team at the Rhode Island Department of Health.

South Carolina
Program activities include:

  • Increasing the knowledge of professionals and paraprofessionals in South Carolina to meet the preventive, primary, and secondary health needs of people with disabilities.
  • Conducting ongoing surveillance with Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) and administrative datasets as secondary sources via the South Carolina Disability Cube Project.
  • Working to achieve more livable communities for people with disabilities by facilitating access to primary care physician offices, increasing access to fitness and recreation facilities, and working with community planning agencies to improve outdoor space using principals of universal design.

The South Carolina Disability and Health Program is housed in the University of South Carolina School of Medicine.

Recreation Opportunities For People With Disabilities

All Out Adventures
All Out Adventures provides outdoor accessible recreational opportunities throughout Massachusetts for people of all abilities, their families and friends. Summer programs include accessible kayaking, canoeing, hiking and cycling. Winter programs include snowshoeing, x-country skiing & sit-skiing, ice skating, sled skating and snowmobile rides.

Accessible Swimming Pools
Accessible Swimming Pools outdoor swimming pool lifts are available at all of the State Parks and Recreation Department’s 20 swimming pools. The pools are free. Contact pool directly for information about other site factors affecting accessibility.

AccesSport America
AccesSport America is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to the discovery of higher function, fitness, and fun for children and adults with disabilities through high-challenge sports, which include kayaking, windsurfing and water skiing.

Arcs.
Local Arcs provide a variety of social and recreational activities for children and teens with developmental disabilities.

Bostnet / Guide to Boston’s Before & After School Programs
Build the Out-of-School Time Network (BOSTnet) has built a network of out-of-school time (OST) resources and opportunities for all children and youth, including those from low-income families and youth with disabilities.

Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary
Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary offers nine miles of walking trails guiding through a variety of field, woodland, and wetland habitats. A quarter-mile, handicap accessible trail and boardwalk along the bank of Indian Brook. Universally accessible facilities: Nature Center, Restrooms, All Persons Trail.

BSC (Boston Sports Club) Adaptive Swim Program
On Monday and Wednesday evening, between 6:30pm and 7:30pm, BSC Waltham (840 Winter Street) offers an adaptive swim program for children, youth, adolescents and adults with disabilities in our 93 degree therapy pool. Volunteers between the ages of 16-20 from neighboring schools and organizations offer their time to pair with an individual seeking to increase range of motion, flexibility, and strength but most importantly to socialize with other individuals and families. Our adaptive swim program is offered during the school year (September thru May) in 8-week sessions at a cost of $200 per session. Our 120,000 square foot, state of the art facility can accommodate families in our men’s, women’s or family changing rooms, fully equipped with showers, lockers, restrooms, towels, and other amenities.

  • 781-522-2054
  • 781-522-2512

CAPEable Adventures
offers adaptive sports & therapeutic recreation activities to local residents and vacationers to the Cape.


Cape Cod Challenger Club

Cape Cod Challenger Club offers noncompetitive sports and recreation opportunities for children with disabilities.

Challenger Sport League
Some towns have challenger teams. The goal of the challenger team is to play with no pressure and to educate typical peers and their parents about sportsmanship. The program is available for boys and girls, ages 3 – 19 with all types of physical and developmental disabilities. Call your local town recreation department to find out if they offer challenger sports.

Children’s Physical Developmental Clinic at Bridgewater State University
BSC students from all majors have opportunities to volunteer as clinicians and work with children and youth with disabilities, ages 18 months to 18 years. Clinic dates are to the right on website’s homepage.

Choral / Community Voices
Open to individuals 16 years of age and older. Must be willing to be committed for 12 weeks. Provides a choral opportunity for adults and young adults with developmental delays. Singing in an ensemble, individuals will have the opportunity to develop and refine vocal technique, listening skills, and team-work. Repertoire will include songs from the masters, traditional and folk favorites, as well as pop and Broadway tunes. Performances are scheduled in December and June. Fee $156/fall, $243/spring.

Compelling Fitness
Compelling Fitness in Hanover provides group and / or individual physical fitness training for children and adults with special needs.

Fitness Program / Special Needs Training
Call your local YMCA.

Horseback Riding – PATH International Centers in Massachusetts
Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship, PATH International was formally known as North American Riding for the Handicapped Association (NARHA). Though PATH Intl. began with a focus on horseback riding as a form of physical and mental therapy, the organization and its dedicated members have since developed a multitude of different equine-related activities for therapeutic purposes, collectively known as equine-assisted activities and therapies (or EAAT).

JF&CS Sunday Respite Program
JF&CS Sunday Respite Program for Children with Developmental Disabilities including those on the Autism Spectrum. Program includes swimming, music and art therapy. The program meets at the Striar JCC in Stoughton from 1:00 -4:00. This program is run by JF&CS with additional funding from Eastern Bank.


Kids In Disability Sports (K.I.D.S)

  • Kids In Disability Sports (K.I.D.S) Thirteen specialized athletic programs are available. K.I.D.S. hosts dances, sports banquets, social activities and recreational events throughout the year. Serves individuals and families throughout Eastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire. Participants range in age 5-40 and have varying disabilities. http://www.kidsinc.us/
  • info@kidsinc.us
  • 1-866-712-7799

LIAM Nation Athletics (formerly known as FOSEK, Friends of Special Education Kidz)
sports leagues for special needs children in Tewksbury and surrounding communities in Merrimack Valley. Accomodates athletes of all abilities. Bombers Baseball, Striker Soccer, Little Reds Basketball.

Mass Dept of Conservation & Recreational Universal Access Program
Mass Dept of Conservation & Recreational Universal Access Program provides outdoor recreation opportunities in Massachusetts State Parks for visitors of all abilities. Accessibility to Massachusetts State Parks is achieved through site improvements, specialized adaptive recreation equipment, and accessible recreation programs.

Massachusetts Hospital School Wheelchair Recreation & Sports Program
Wheelchair sports and recreation program for children ages 9 to 21. Horseback riding, swimming and , Wheelchair Athletes Program.

Miracle League of Massachusetts
Miracle League of Massachusetts provides baseball for special needs children. Free to participate (includes uniform). Located at Blanchard Memorial Elementary School Ball Field in Boxborough.

New England Wheelchair Athletic Association (NEWAA)
Volunteer organization that helps individuals with physcial disabilities participate in recreational
and sports activities. The NEWAA provides opportunities for athletic competition by sponsoring
regional and local meets.

Partners for Youth With Disabilities Provides mentoring programs that assist young people reach their full potential. Partners provides several types of mentoring programs including one-to-one, group mentoring and e-mentoring.

Piers Park Sailing
Piers Park Sailing provides programs for disabled youth and adults aboard 23-foot sonar sailboats on a no charge basis. Serves those with amputations, paralysis, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, autism, hearing impaired, sight impaired and other disabilities. Successfully integrates youth with disabilities into summer youth sailing programs. Scholarships are available for all Adaptive sailing programs. “Yes You Can Sail” program Friday eves for $35.

  • (617) 561-6677

Senseability Gym
Senseability Gym serves special needs children in greater Hopedale area. Our mission is to provide a parent-led sensory gym, giving children with special needs a safe, fun, indoor area where they can play and accommodate their sensory needs.

Spaulding Adaptive Sports
Spaulding Adaptive Sports offers adaptive sports and recreation activities in Boston, Cape Cod and the North Shore. Includes wheelchair tennis, hand cycling, adaptive rowing, waterskiing or windsurfing.

Special Olympics Massachusetts (SOMA)
Special Olympics Massachusetts (SOMA) provides year round sports training and athletic competition for all persons with intellectual disabilities. Minimum age requirement is eight years of age. There is no maximum age requirement. SOMA summer games offers aquatics, athletics, gymnastics, sailing, tennis and volleyball. Go to above link to search SOMA region that covers your town.

Sudbury Adaptive Sports & Recreation
Programs for all ages and abilities.

Super Soccer Stars Shine
Our unique program uses soccer as a vehicle to teach life skills to individuals with developmental disabilities. Our innovative curriculum, designed by licensed educators and therapists, promotes the complete growth and development of each player. Our low player-to-coach ratios encourage and empower players to increase social potential with teammates, build self-awareness and confidence and advance gross and fine motor skills — all while each individual improves at his or her own pace! Located at 1 Thompson Square, Suite 301 in Charlestown. Call for information. Low pricing options and scholarship applications available.

Therapy and the Performing Arts – Cape Cod
Provides children and young adults with physical and intellectual disabilities the opportunity to enjoy various arts and recreational programs in addition to receiving therapeutic benefits from their participation. Children gain new and rewarding experiences from which they develop self-confidence, increase motor function, and have fun. Offers age appropriate programming on Cape Cod for children and young adults diagnosed with down syndrome, chromosomal abnormalies, cerebral palsy, genetic disorders and othe cognitive and physical disabilities. Classes are taught by certified instructors/ therapists with expertise in various disciplines. Programs are offered on a sliding scale fee based on the family’s ability to pay.


TILL Autism Support Center

TILL Autism Support Center has social programs for those with autism spectrum disorders. Programs include exciting Family Fun Days that include apple picking, rock climing, sledding, in-door gym time, zoo trips, holiday parties and much more.

Town Recreation Departments
Most programs are open to participants from neighboring towns. Call area town recreation department to find out if it has special programming for children with disabilities.

Wheelchair Sports & Recreation Assn.
Wheelchair Sports & Recreation Assn. offers information about beach wheelchairs, biking, boating and more!

TopSoccer Program / Outreach Program for Soccer
is a community-based training and team placement program for young athletes with a mental or physical disability. For additional information or would like to start a TOPSoccer Program in your community contact:

YMCAs
YMCAs are accessible and offer a range of classes. Call your local YMCA to find out what programs are available.

The Lowell YMCA “Adaptive Aquatics Program” accommodates children with mild to moderate neurological, physical, or social challenges.

  • (978) 454-7825.

Oak Square YMCA of Greater Boston at 615 Washington St, Brighton has a new adaptive fitness room & offers Adapted Adult Speciality Fitness Partnership Program on Wednesday and Saturday 11AM – 12:30PM on the Fitness Floor.

Hopkinton YMCA offers seasonal specialized programs. “Aim High” archery program and “Rock On!” is an outdoor ropes course and rock climbing for individuals with autism spectrum disorders or related social communication disorders.

  • 45 East Street in Hopkinton.

WaterFire Access Program
A water-taxi program at Dyer Street Dock in Providence Rhode Island which provides an unforgettable experience of the art work for children and adults with disabilities to assure that they can join in the most popular arts event in the state and share the experience with their families and friends. Reservations are required. Each Water Fire Access passenger can bring along one companion.

Waypoint Adventures
Adventures for people of all ages and abilities

Whole Children offers movement, art, recreation and music programs for infants, children and teens of all abilities. Located in Hadley.

How to adapt your new or pre-owned vehicle to meet your needs after a stroke

Driving after a stroke is often a major concern for survivor’s and their loved ones. It prompts many questions about ability, safety and vehicle options. Often times, the physical disadvantages that result from stroke can compromise a survivor’s ability to operate their vehicle.

Advances in the vehicle modification industry have introduced new driving controls that are giving independence back to stroke survivors that want to drive. They allow them to get back behind the wheel in their own vehicle to go where they want to go, when they want to go.

Innovative vehicle modifications such as hand controls, left-foot accelerators, lifts and mobility seating can transform your personal vehicle into a vehicle that give you more freedom.

Mobility equipment dealers strive to remain at the forefront of the vehicle modification industry by providing cutting-edge technology and a full selection of adaptable equipment for your pre-owned vehicle.

Hand Controls For Stroke Survivors with Limited Use of their Feet
Automotive Innovations is New England’s  #1 hand control installation facility  manufacturer of hand controls and driving aids for the disabled. Hand control systems are specifically designed to give drivers the benefit of controlling a vehicle with both hands on the wheel making for a safer, smoother driving experience.

Unlike other manual and or servo hand control installers in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine, we have the ability to offer a custom fitment to your vehicle and you, for everything from a Fiat 500 to a Lamborghini Aventador no one else has the master craftsman, machining equipment and facility capable of performing a custom installation the way we can.

Push Rock hand controls have a handle in a vertical position; accelerating by rocking back in an arching motion using the fingers and/or the palm. There are several additional options to choose from:

  • Spinner knob: Attached to the steering wheel to allow controlled steering with use of one hand.
  • Single Pin: As an alternative to the spinner knob, this hand control was designed for clients that cannot open their hand fully.
  • Tri Pin: Great for an independent driver. It requires minimal gripping strength and/or reduced wrist stability.
  • V-Grip: This attachment is intended for drivers with moderate gripping strength.
  • Steering Wheel Extension: This device is individually customizable, so you can pick a diameter and height that best suits your needs. The easily removable device is completely compatible with any OEM steering wheel.

Servo electronic mobility controls offers driving control products that are safe and provide piece of mind every time you are on the road.

  • Lever  A gas/brake input with adjustable levels of force and travel from the full gas to the full brake position. It is designed for customers that have a wider range of motion and a larger effort level.
  • One handed steering and gas brake  A input that you can steer that is available in a two-axis configuration for gas/brake and steering It has a adjustable range of motion and very low levels  of force to operate. It is designed and custom build for each customers specific range of motion and abilities.
  • Wheel  A steering input that can be adjusted to less than 2 oz of force at the proper orthotic position of 3 3/8” from center. It is also able to be adaptable for customers that have a wider range of motion.

Left-foot Accelerator
Automotive Innovations offers the best left foot gas pedals with unmatched installations.  Left-foot accelerator are designed to offer a left foot gas pedal which acts exactly like your vehicle’s existing gas pedal. Our Left foot gas pedals are removable with features like a quick-release base so the entire assembly can be removed and re-installed quickly and easily.

Lifts for Stroke Survivors that use Wheelchairs or Walkers
Automotive Innovations can offer more solutions for the transportation of your mobility device than any other dealership in New England.

” Its worth the drive, I live in the western part of Massachusetts and will never trust my van with anyone other than Automotive Innovations. They have been taking care of me and my vans since 1996. When a company comes through for you time and time again whats that worth? For me it’s priceless and the drive is irrelevant.”

Chris P Whately, MA

  • Scooter & Wheelchair Lifts while are not always practical they do work in all types of vehicles. These fold-down wheelchair and scooter lifts make lifting and storing your manual folding wheelchair or scooter possible.

Mobility Seating
The mobility transfer seat is an innovative system for lower vehicles which can provide easer  access to an automotive seat. The seat power rotates out over the doorsill, bridging the gap for a safe transfer onto the seat. These seats are not always practical for every type of vehicle

Our goal is to match your lifestyle and your vehicle with equipment that will deliver independence.

Finding a Dealer That’s Up to Standards

Hand controls, left-foot accelerator, lifts and mobility seating offers opportunities for the stroke survivor to regain their mobility freedom in their pre-owned vehicle. You have just found the best mobility dealer in all of New England that offers a ever evolving selection of adaptable equipment.

It is important to select a reputable dealer to provide the adaptable equipment and installation for your pre-owned vehicle.

  1. Are they members of the National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association (NMEDA) or another organization that has vehicle conversion standards?
  2. Are they Quality Assurance Program (QAP) certified?
  3. Do they provide ongoing service and maintenance?
  4. Do they provide 24/7 emergency service?
  5. Do they provide training on the adaptable equipment?
  6. Can the equipment be transferred to a new vehicle in the future?

Adapting pre-owned vehicles provides stroke survivors with mobility freedom in the vehicle they love and are familiar with.

Memorial Day Parade! Help Surprise Veterans!

Memorial Day Parade! Help Surprise The Veterans!

When
Memorial Day – Monday, May 25
At 10:00am in Athol, Massachusetts

“Please show your support to our veterans, the parade starts at Silver Lake cemetery, and they follow Crescent st ” the same road Staretts is on ” All the way down to the Veterans monument, across from the YMCA ” Next to the bus stop! We all have the day off from work/school, why not show your support? These men and women are more than deserving of it. The best part is, these veterans are not expecting this, they are in for a huge surprise!”

For more information please visit the Facebook Page

The 5th Annual Boston Wounded Vet Run Is Today! Come Say Hi!

Bosotn Wpunded Vet Run 2015

What
Motorcycle Ride and Concert
Ceremony – Food – Music By TigerLily Band
Beer Tent – Vendors -Raffle Items – Stunt Show

Motorcycle NOT REQUIRED TO PARTICIPATE -Everyone Welcome
Those who do not ride can join us at Suffolk Downs to welcome Veterans and Bikers!

Purpose
To support four of New England’s most severely wounded Veterans:
SSG Nick Lavery
SGT Brendan Ferreira
SSG Travis Mills
SSG Mike Downing
All donations directly benefit these wounded Veterans and charities of their choosing.

When
Saturday, May 9, 2015
Rain date: May 16, 2015
Registration begins at 9am.
Kickstands up 12pm

Where
Begins at:
Boston Harley-Davidson
650 Squire Road, Revere, Ma

Ends at:
Suffolk Downs Race Track
550 McClellan Hwy East Boston

Cost
$20 per rider
10$ passenger
$20 Walk-ins

Donate Here!!
Donations can be made out to ‘Boston’s Wounded Veterans’ and sent to:
60 Paris Street
East Boston, MA 02128

Call with any questions: (617) 697-5080

Boston’s 5th Annual Wounded Vet Run Is Tomorrow!!

Boston's 5th Annual Wounded Vet Run - 2015

What
Motorcycle Ride and Concert
Ceremony – Food – Music By TigerLily Band
Beer Tent – Vendors -Raffle Items – Stunt Show

Motorcycle NOT REQUIRED TO PARTICIPATE -Everyone Welcome
Those who do not ride can join us at Suffolk Downs to welcome Veterans and Bikers!

Purpose
To support four of New England’s most severely wounded Veterans:
SSG Nick Lavery
SGT Brendan Ferreira
SSG Travis Mills
SSG Mike Downing
All donations directly benefit these wounded Veterans and charities of their choosing.

When
Saturday, May 9, 2015
Rain date: May 16, 2015
Registration begins at 9am.
Kickstands up 12pm

Where
Begins at:
Boston Harley-Davidson
650 Squire Road, Revere, Ma

Ends at:
Suffolk Downs Race Track
550 McClellan Hwy East Boston

Cost
$20 per rider
10$ passenger
$20 Walk-ins

Donate Here!!
Donations can be made out to ‘Boston’s Wounded Veterans’ and sent to:
60 Paris Street
East Boston, MA 02128

Call with any questions: (617) 697-5080

Motorcycle Awareness MonthMay is Motorcycle Awareness Month.
Share The Road.

Boston’s 5th Annual Wounded Vet Run Is One Month Away!!

Boston's 5th Annual Wounded Vet Run - 2015

What
Motorcycle Ride and Concert
Ceremony – Food – Music By TigerLily Band
Beer Tent – Vendors -Raffle Items – Stunt Show

Motorcycle NOT REQUIRED TO PARTICIPATE -Everyone Welcome
Those who do not ride can join us at Suffolk Downs to welcome Veterans and Bikers!

Purpose
To support four of New England’s most severely wounded Veterans:
SSG Nick Lavery
SGT Brendan Ferreira
SSG Travis Mills
SSG Mike Downing
All donations directly benefit these wounded Veterans and charities of their choosing.

When
Saturday, May 9, 2015
Rain date: May 16, 2015
Registration begins at 9am.
Kickstands up 12pm

Where
Begins at:
Boston Harley-Davidson
650 Squire Road, Revere, Ma

Ends at:
Suffolk Downs Race Track
550 McClellan Hwy East Boston

Cost
$20 per rider
10$ passenger
$20 Walk-ins

Donate Here!!
Donations can be made out to ‘Boston’s Wounded Veterans’ and sent to:
60 Paris Street
East Boston, MA 02128

Call with any questions: (617) 697-5080

Full Service Automotive Shop

The VMi New England Mobility Center’s Team in Bridgewater, MA offers a in-house body shop in addition to a auto service department that is staffed with the most qualified technicians ready to answer your questions and address your handicap van auto repair needs. Our auto body service and car repair experts have the experience to get your wheelchair accessible van back on the road in top condition. You can come from and where in New England to have one of our specialists repair your adapted vehicles, wheelchair vehicles, used adapted vehicles, or used conversion vans, conversion van or handicapped vehicle. Call anytime to schedule an appointment, or contact our van service department if you have any additional questions.

At the VMi New England Mobility Center we provide wheelchair accessible van body repair service for all make & model vans & mobility equipment. We service and repair most all brand mobility vehicles including BraunAbility and VMI van’s We perform body shop service, rust prevention, rust repair and warranty work on all the vehicles & products we sell. We repair wheelchair lifts in vans & buses for both private and commercial customers

Wheelchair Van Body Shop
With our in house down draft spray booth we can assist you with Autobody repair as well as work with insurance companies to be sure you get the proper support in repairing damaged wheelchahir accessible vehicles .

Full Service Automotive Shop
Our team of technicians also perform Full Service Auto repair so we can offer 1 stop shopping. Instead of using 2 different mechanics for the repair of one vehicle, let our trained service team handle all of your mechanical needs

Large Selection Of Wheelchair Van Parts In-Stock
We offer a large selection of parts for wheelchair lifts and wheelchair vans including: BraunAbility, VMI, Vision & more. Our expert staff in our service department are standing by to fix your mobility van. Whether you need a single part or would like to keep your entire fleet going, we have the name brand parts available. If we don’t have the exact part your looking for, we can get almost anything within a day. Give us a call today for all your wheelchair van needs.

Massachusetts Gold Star Family Tree Dedication

Military Friends Foundation 501(C)3
Cordially Invites You To Join The
Massachusetts Gold Star Family Tree Dedication

on

December 16, 2014 (TODAY!!)
At 1:30pm
Memorial Hall
State House, Boston, MA

 Massachusetts Gold Star Family Tree Dedication

 Massachusetts Gold Star Families are invited to submit a photo of their loved one that will be displayed on the state’s Gold Star Families Tree on December 16th. Families are also invited to join at 12:30pm (prior to the 1:30pm dedication) to decorate a custom ornament. For more information and to submit a photograph, please visit www.militaryfriends.org/GoldStarTree

Boston’s 5th Annual Wounded Vet Run

Boston's 5th Annual Wounded Vet Run - 2015

What
Motorcycle Ride and Concert
Ceremony – Food – Music By TigerLily Band
Beer Tent – Vendors -Raffle Items – Stunt Show

Motorcycle NOT REQUIRED TO PARTICIPATE -Everyone Welcome
Those who do not ride can join us at Suffolk Downs to welcome Veterans and Bikers!

Purpose
To support four of New England’s most severely wounded Veterans:
SSG Nick Lavery
SGT Brendan Ferreira
SSG Travis Mills
SSG Mike DowningAll donations directly benefit these wounded Veterans and charities of their choosing.

When
Saturday, May 9, 2015
Rain date: May 16, 2015
Registration begins at 10am.
Kickstands up 12pm

Where
Begins at:
“New” Boston Harley-Davidson
650 Squire Road, Revere, Ma

Ends at:
Suffolk Downs
550 McClellan Hwy East Boston

Cost
$20 per rider
10$ passenger
$20 Walk-ins

Donate Here!!Donations can be made out to ‘Boston’s Wounded Veterans’ and sent to:
60 Paris Street
East Boston, MA 02128

Call Andrew with any questions: 903-340-9402
Vendors please call: 617-416-0782

Tri Town Veterans Day Commemoration 2014

Tri Town Veterans Day Commemoration 2014

Honoring those who served on Veterans Day

BRIDGEWATER | EAST BRIDGEWATER | WEST BRIDGEWATER

Parade and ceremony: The Tri-Town Parade steps off at 10 a.m. Tuesday from Spring Hill Avenue and travels on Summer Street, Route 104 and Route 28 to Legion Field. There will be a ceremony at Legion Field gazebo. Collation for parade participants will be at the Veterans Club on Cottage Street.

MIDDLEBORO

Parade and ceremony: Parade starts at 10 a.m. Tuesday at Town Hall. A ceremony will take place at the Middleboro Veterans Memorial Park on the Town Hall lawn after the parade. The parade will be cancelled if it rains, but a ceremony will take place at 10 a.m. in the ballroom at the Town Hall.

BROCKTON

Parade and ceremony: Parade steps off at 10 a.m. Tuesday from the War Memorial Building, 156 West Elm St., and concludes with a ceremony at the Veterans of All Wars Monument on Legion Parkway.

RAYNHAM

School program: The 12th annual Veterans Day program is set for 9 a.m. Monday in the gymnasium at Raynham Middle School and includes guest speakers and entertainment by the school students. All residents who have served in the military, including the Reserves, are invited to attend and receive a show of support from the community.

TAUNTON

Breakfast: A pancake breakfast will be held from 8 to 11 a.m. Tuesday at Coyle Cassidy High School, 2 Hamilton St. Cost is $5 is those age 12 and older, $3 for ages 3-11. Proceeds will assist in purchasing and placing memorial markers at veterans’ gravesites in Taunton.

CARVER

Breakfast: 8:30 a.m. Tuesday at United Parish of Carver, 115 Main St. All Carver veterans will be served at no charge.

ABINGTON | ROCKLAND | WHITMAN

Parade: The annual Tri-Town Parade steps off at 9 a.m. Tuesday from Summit and Union streets in Rockland. The parade is hosted on an alternating basis by Abington, Whitman and Rockland.

EASTON

Parade and ceremony: Parade kicks off at 11 a.m. Tuesday at Washington Plaza and proceeds up Main Street to the World War I Memorial for a ceremony, continues to Veterans Memorial Park and the World War II, Korean and Vietnam Memorial for a ceremony.

HALIFAX

Ceremony: A brief ceremony at 9 a.m. Tuesday at Town Hall, 499 Plymouth St., includes the laying of wreaths at the various monuments near the Town Hall and a few words from attendees.

PEMBROKE

Ceremony: A ceremony at 11 a.m. Tuesday at Pembroke Middle School, 559 School St., will include guest speakers and a performance by the Pembroke High School Chorus.

RANDOLPH

Breakfast and march: Breakfast starts at 9 a.m. Tuesday at the VFW hall, 10 Highland Ave. At 10:30 a.m., a group will march from the VFW to the war memorial outside the Turner Free Library in Crawford Square.

STOUGHTON

Flags for gravesites: Flags will be placed at veterans’ graves on Saturday at the Holy Sepulcher and Evergreen cemeteries. Refreshments will be served at the VFW afterward.

Parade and ceremony: The parade starts at 9 a.m. Tuesday at VFW Post 1645, Washington Street; stops at Town Hall for a ceremony and wreath-laying at the Memorial Bell; forms again on Pearl Street and travels to Faxon Veterans Memorial Park for a ceremony; and proceeds on Walnut Street and Washington Street back to the VFW. Collation is at noon at VFW, 837 Washington St.

Hope For Heroes: Homeless Veteran Drive

Hope For Heroes - Homeless Veteran Drive

Event:
Hope For Heroes
Homeless Veteran Drive
“Support those who supported U.S.”

When:
November 7-11 2014

What Can You Do?

Donate! Hope For Heroes is collecting items to be donated to homeless Veterans residing at three Massachusetts Veteran Shelters. The following items are needed:

  • Sweaters, Turtlenecks, Thermal Underwear, Belts (All Sizes)
  • Functional Computers/Software
  • Gift Cards to Supermarkets, Drug Stores and/or Department Stores
  • Toiletry Items (Shampoo, Shaving Cream, Razors)
  • Pillows, Pillow Cases, Blankets, Sheets for Twin Beds
  • Wool Knit Hats, Scarves, Gloves
  • Disposable Diapers
  • Bras (Sizes C and D Preferred)
  • Padlocks
  • Gift Wrap and Supplies
  • Gently Worn Male/Female Business Clothing (For Job Interviews)

Collection Location
Milford Nissan: (508) 422-8000
320 East Main Street (Route 16) Milford, MA 01757

Drop Off Times:

  • Friday: November 7th 8am – 6pm
  • Saturday: November 8th 8am – 5pm | 10am – 12 Noon: WMRC Radio (1490am) LIVE Remote Broadcast
  • Sunday: November 9th 12pm – 5pm
  • Monday: November 10th 8am – 8pm
  • Tuesday November 11th (Veterans Day) 8am – 8pm
    8am – 11am Chef Barry Keefe (Dinner & Co. Gourmet Catering) will provide FREE Breakfast Sandwiches to anyone making a donation.

Boston’s 5th Annual Wounded Vet Motorcycle Run

 Boston’s Annual Wounded Vet Bike Run Inspired by Cpl. Vincent Mannion Brodeur began in 2011. One of the most severely wounded veterans in the nation, Vinnie is the recipient of the Bronze Star and Purple Heart. While serving in Iraq in 2007 with the 82nd Airborne, Vinnie was critically injured by an insurgents improvised explosive device. After surviving 40 operations and a year long coma Vincent has become an inspiration for people throughout the nation. All proceeds from Vinnie’s Run went to creating a handicapped accessible living space for Vinnie. Every year Boston’s Wounded Vet Run will be dedicated to different veterans. All proceeds raised go towards housing modifications to suite a comfortable living for the disabled veteran. Besides housing modifications, funds are also used to improve the quality of life of disabled veterans. Recreational needs, cars, and basic living needs are also other fields of charity the ride is dedicated to. The event is sponsored by the Italian-American War Veterans, a federally chartered non-profit veterans organization. They fought, and we ride, a bike run honoring the wounded veteran’s of New England.

The Honorees for the 5th Annual Boston Wounded Vet Run

2015 Event Information

When?
Saturday, May 9, 2015
Registration begins at 9am.
Kickstands up 12pm

Where?
Begins at:
New Boston Harley
650 Squire Road, Revere, Ma

Ends at:
Suffolk Downs Race track
550 McClellan Hwy East Boston

Cost:
$20 per person
10$ passenger
$20 Walk-ins
Donate Here!!

Motorcycle NOT REQUIRED TO PARTICIPATE
Those who do not ride can join us at Suffolk Downs at 1:30 for ceremony, food, and entertainment.

2015 Honorees
U.S ARMY SSGT Nick Lavery
U.S ARMY SSGT Mike Downing
U.S. ARMY SGT Brendan Ferreira
U.S ARMY SSGT Travis Mills

Vendors please call:
617-416-0782

MASSACHUSETTS RUN FOR THE FALLEN ~ A Military Friends Foundation Project

Start Date: 09/06/2014
Start Time: 09 : 00 AM
End Time: 12 : 00 AM
Location: Market Street Lynnfield – Exit 43 off Route 128/I-95
Lynnfield, Massachusetts 01940
 Name: Military Friends Foundation
Phone: (844) 357-8387
Email: Email the Event Director
Website: facebook.com/massrunforthefallen
Information for GOLD STAR FAMILIES
Are you a post 9/11 MASSACHUSETTS GOLD STAR FAMILY? Please call or email for your Gold Star Family code to waive your registration fee for four family members!

Email: MARFTF@militaryfriends.org
Ph: 1-84-HELP-VETS

About the Massachusetts Run for the Fallen
Massachusetts Run For The Fallen (MARFTF) is a Military Friends Foundation project dedicated to keeping alive the memory of our military Heroes that gave their lives to protect our freedom since September 11, 2001.

We are a group of runners, walkers and support crew whose mission is clear and simple: To run in honor every Massachusetts service member who lost there lives in Operation Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom and New Dawn. Each mile of sweat and pain and each flag saluted, is to pay homage to one service member’s life and their family.

We run to raise awareness for the lives of those who died, to rejuvenate their memories and keep their spirits alive. We run to raise support for programs that assist the families of the fallen and to aid in the healing process for Massachusetts residents whose lives have been affected by war. MARFTF has no political affiliation or agenda, but simply honor those who have fought, and those who have fallen under the American Flag.

2014 Event Schedule
7-8:00 AM – Same Day Registration Opens
8:15 AM – Name Reading of Fallen Heroes
9:05 AM – Wheelchair Start
9:11 AM – Timed 5K Start
9:15 AM – Untimed 5K/Walker Start
9:30-12:00 – Food, Festivities and Fun!
Event Highlights
*Limited edition tshirt for the first 400 registered runners (additional shirts may be available for purchase day of event)
*Pre-run airbrush tattoo
*Post-Run lunch featuring eats from Kings Lynnfield
*Free ice cream tasting
*Great promotions for registered runners/walkers from MarketStreet stores
*Raffles
*Live music

Click here  to Register

Attention Homeless and At-Risk Veterans – We Want To Honor and Serve You

The Massachusetts Stand Down is ONE DAY ONLY on Friday August 22, 2014

Event Location
IBEW Local 103
256 Freeport Street Dorchester

Registration
Veterans MUST Bring Proof of Military Service
Hours: 8:00am 4:00pm
No Administration after registration closes

Contact Information
Call: 6175228086
Email: veteran@voamass.org
Or Log On To: www.voamass.org

Free Services Include
Housing Assistance * Job Assistance * Legal Assistance * Education * Mass Health * Medical Aid
Eye Glasses
* Hair Cuts * Foot Care * Oral Health and Dental Screening * Clothing * VA Benefits * Child Support
VA Boston Healthcare System Registration
* Mental Health Counseling * Counseling * Food Stamps
HIV/Aids Resources
* Female Veteran Programs * Voter Registration * Massachusetts ID and Driver License Renewals

What Is The Massachusetts Stand Down?
“Stand Down” is a military term referring to the brief period of time a soldier leaves an active combat area in order to rest and regain strength. Today, Stand Down refers to a grassroots, community based intervention program designed to help the nation’s homeless veteran population.

This event has served as a way of bringing a wide range of specialized resources to help the city’s veterans facing a wide range of problems, from homelessness to mental health needs and everything in between. Stand Down is a once a year opportunity for homeless and at-risk veterans to access a broad spectrum of services in one location

Volunteer
The Massachusetts Stand Down depends on a large number of volunteers to help serve over 1,000 Veterans.
Volunteer areas include:
Veteran and Volunteer Registration * Friendly Site Guide * Clothing Tent * Food Preparation and Service * Family Tent

2014 Stand Down Volunteer Application
For questions about volunteering at Stand Down, contact Melita Little at mlittle@voamass.org or 617-522-8086.

Donate
To find out how you or your business can donate time and services, please contact:

Stephanie Paauwe, Volunteers of America, spaauwe@voamass.org or 617-522-8086.

Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike

Yesterday, July 13, 2014, The Boston Wounded Vets MC Run (They Fought, We Ride) presented a brand new Harley Davidson 2014 trike to wounded Soldier Andy Kingsley from Athol.

The trike was purchased by Monies raised by the Boston Wounded Vets Motorcycle ride.
The Mobility & Adaptive Equipment was installed by us, VMi New England.

Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike1 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike2 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike9 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike10 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike11 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike3 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike12 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike4 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike13 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike5 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike14 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike6 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike7 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike15 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike16 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike8 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike17 Boston Wounded Vet MC Ride presents Andy Kingsley his New 2014 Modified Trike18

Mass. Registry of Motor Vehicles: Fees Increase

As if waiting in line at the Registry of Motor Vehicles wasn’t painful enough. Now, it’s going to cost you a little more money to conduct your business there.

Starting Today, the RMV will increase fees for road tests, one- and two-year registrations, and vehicle inspections.

The highest service price hike will be for road tests, which will increase from $20 to $35. Meanwhile, a one-year registration will increase from $25 to $30 and a two-year registration will go from $50 to $60.

And if it’s time to get your vehicle inspected, it will cost you $35 instead of $29.

According to a news release from the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, registration fees have not been changed since 2009. Inspection fees were last changed in 1999 and fees for road tests have not changed in over a decade.

MassDOT estimates the fee increase will help the agency generate $55 to $63 million for the 2015 fiscal year and close a projected $55 million budget gap. The extra revenue will also help “make customer improvements and invest in the Commonwealth’s transportation system.”

 For the full list of Mass. RMV Fees click here

State Disability and Health Programs

State Disability and Health Programs
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) state-based disability and health programs inform policy and practice at the state level. These programs ensure that individuals with disabilities are included in ongoing state disease prevention, health promotion, and emergency response activities.

CDC supports 18 state-based programs to promote equity in health, prevent chronic disease, and increase the quality of life for people with disabilities. Each program customizes its activities to meet its state’s needs, which broadens expertise and information sharing among states.

The programs’ goals are to:

  • Enhance program infrastructure and capacity.
  • Improve state level surveillance and monitoring activities.
  • Increase awareness of health-related disability policy initiatives.
  • Increase health promotion opportunities for people with disabilities.
  • Improve access to health care services for people with disabilities.
  • Improve emergency preparedness for people with disabilities.
  • Effectively monitor and evaluate program activities.

The goals of the state disability and health programs align with those of Healthy People 2020 related to disability:

  • Removing barriers to participation in social, spiritual, recreational, community and civic activities.
  • Improving access to primary care, and health and wellness programs.
  • Identifying people with disabilities in data systems.
  • Increasing surveillance and health promotion programs.
  • Providing graduate-level courses in disability and health.

States funded by CDC for Disability and Health Programs:

  • Alabama
  • Alaska
  • Arkansas
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Illinois
  • Iowa
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Montana
  • New Hampshire
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oregon
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina


Alabama

Program activities include:

  • Promoting inclusion of persons with disabilities in all aspects of policy development, planning, and execution of state based public health programs.
  • Using Federally Qualified Healthcare Centers to assist with capacity assessment of ability to meet the needs of those with disabilities and determine barriers to inclusiveness.
  • Increasing health promotion opportunities for persons with disabilities through adaptation of existing public health programs, such as Scale Back Alabama, and increasing the number of children with disabilities who participate in mainstream physical education and after-school programs.

 

Alaska
Program activities include:

  • Developing accurate and timely outreach for Alaskans experiencing disability and their care providers.
  • Building the capacity of a cross-agency disability advisory council that reviews and evaluates program activities, assists with sustainability plans, and provides recommendations for policy change.
  • Providing technical assistance, training, and other support for existing community-wide initiatives designed to improve the health of Alaskans experiencing disability.

The Alaska Disability and Health Program is a collaboration between the State of Alaska’s Department of Health and Social Services, Division of Public Health, Section of Women’s, Children’s, and Family Health and the Governor’s Council on Disabilities and Special Education, and is housed in the Division of Public Health.

 

Arkansas
Program activities include:

  • Enhancing program infrastructure and capacity through the expansion and support of an Advisory Board and increasing the representation of individuals with disabilities on public health program committees.
  • Improving state-level surveillance and monitoring by conducting a statewide needs assessment to look at the health status and access of people with disabilities, developing documents comparing demographics and health disparities of Arkansas and the U.S.
  • Increasing awareness of health-related disability policy initiatives through Disability Policy Summits; educating and supporting advocates on proposed policy initiatives and disseminating information to policy makers.
  • Increase health promotion opportunities for people with disabilities by supporting training that maximizes the health of people with disabilities and implementing health awareness and education campaigns.
  • Improving access to health care for people with disabilities by looking at the accessibility of healthcare facilities, and educating healthcare professionals through continued education, as well as internship placement for students in 11 different health related disciplines.
  • Improving emergency preparedness among people with disabilities by reviewing state emergency plans for accessibility, involving people with disabilities in county level planning, providing training, and ensuring shelter access by identifying and surveying pre-designated shelter sites.

The Arkansas Disability and Health Program is housed in the Partners for Inclusive Communities at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.

 

Delaware
Program activities include:

  • Creating systems-level change through active participation on statewide councils, committees, and workgroups that are addressing health and disability issues and implementation of goals and objectives of the Plan for Action, A Strategic Plan for Delaware to Promote Health and Prevent Secondary Health Conditions in Individuals with Disabilities.
  • Providing technical assistance for health care, fitness, and recreation providers and facilities to improve accessibility and inclusion of individuals with disabilities in health examinations, exercise programs, and recreation activities.
  • Providing education, awareness raising, and resources sharing through the program’s interactive website www.gohdwd.org and email newsletters to individuals with disabilities, family members, professionals, policymakers, and legislators.

The Delaware Disability and Health Program, Healthy Delawareans with Disabilitiesis housed in the Center for Disabilities Studies at the University of Delaware.

Florida
Program activities include:

  • Promoting breast cancer awareness and encouraging recommended screening among women 40 years of age or older who have a disability (the Right to Know Campaign) with partners such as the Florida Centers for Independent Living and the Florida Area Health Education Centers.
  • Increasing the capacity of health care providers in Florida to provide quality health care to people with disabilities by training medical students, and medical and allied health professionals.
  • Increasing the quantity and quality of disability and health-related data in Florida and providing the epidemiologic capacity to analyze these data.

The Florida Disability and Health Program is housed in the Office of Disability and Health at the University of Florida.

Illinois
Program activities include:

  • Monitoring the health status and health-related behaviors of people with disabilities, and sustaining and expanding the statewide infrastructure to prevent secondary conditions and promote the health of people with disabilities in Illinois.
  • Increasing evidence-based health promotion and prevention opportunities and resources available for people with disabilities to promote healthy lifestyles and reduce the risk of chronic disease and secondary conditions.
  • Assisting health professionals to gain the knowledge and tools necessary to work effectively with people with a disability to increase the availability and accessibility of health promotion and prevention services, interventions, and resources.

The Illinois Disability and Health Program is housed in the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Iowa
Program activities include:

  • Developing a statewide network of community providers that offer the Living Well with a Disability intervention program.
  • Identifying evidence-based strategies to increase awareness and education opportunities for health professionals.
  • Promoting accessible health care and support services to increase independence among people with disabilities.

The Iowa Disability and Health Program is housed in the Iowa Department of Public Health.

Massachusetts
Program activities include:

  • Designing and implementing training and technical assistance for health care providers and public health programs on the Americans with Disabilities Act to ensure inclusion of people with disabilities in state funded programs, services, and activities.
  • Providing the knowledge base needed to design programs related to healthy aging, health and disability, and secondary health conditions.
  • Working with state agencies and community partners to identify, implement, and evaluate evidence-based health promotion programs among older adults and people with disabilities (for example, the Stanford Chronic Disease Self-Management Program).

The Massachusetts Disability and Health Program is housed in the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.

Michigan
Program activities include:

The Michigan Health Promotion for People with Disabilities Program is housed in the Michigan Department of Community Health.

Montana
Program activities include:

  • Recruiting, training, and supporting disability advisors to participate in Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services advisory groups and integrate disability and health into public health planning and evaluation processes.
  • Recruiting, training, and supporting state disability leaders to assess and improve the accessibility of community health and fitness programs.
  • Conducting Living Well with a Disability, an eight-week peer-facilitated, health promotion workshop with Montana’s four Centers for Independent Living.

The Montana Disability and Health Program is a collaboration between the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services and the University of Montana Rural Institute, a Center for Excellence in Disability Education, Research, and Service.

New Hampshire
Program activities include:

  • Training students, self-advocates, families and professionals through coursework, seminars, workshops and conferences.
  • Providing technical assistance to organizations and individuals to improve their capacity to include all citizens.
  • Serving as a resource for information to policymakers and government officials.
  • Disseminating information to families, consumers, community members and professionals via books, monographs, articles, videos, newsletters, the Internet and press coverage, including TV, radio, newspapers and consumer forums.
  • Conducting applied research to better understand and address the needs of individuals with disabilities.
  • Engaging in collaborative activities and joint projects with organizations that share common goals.

The Institute on Disability (IOD) is housed within New Hampshire’s University Center for Excellence on Disability (UCED).

New York
Program activities include:

  • Implementing the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) Center for Community Health Inclusion Policy, which requires all Center for Community Health programs to ensure accessibility and inclusion for people with disabilities throughout all funding opportunities. The proposed activities to implement inclusive local and statewide public health programs must also include an evaluation of the effect and reach of the policy.
  • Educating and training NYSDOH program managers, primary program implementation staff, NYSDOH contractors and partners about the health disparities experienced by people with disabilities and providing strategies, resources, and potential partners that will enable the integration of people with disabilities in their program areas.
  • Supporting an advisory body comprising individuals with disabilities, other state agencies, community-based organizations, and providers to inform program activities, as well as representing multiple external agency advisory committees to direct consideration of health care and health promotion needs of people with disabilities.

The New York Disability and Health Program is housed in the New York State Department of Health.

North Carolina
Program activities include:

  • Supporting the collection, analysis, and dissemination of data on people with an intellectual or developmental disability, or both, to better assess the health status of North Carolina adults.
  • Promoting accessible environments to support full community participation and engaging people with disabilities by developing accessibility checklists for health care practices and by providing training on adaptive and inclusive fitness and how to remove barriers to fitness facilities.
  • Increasing access to domestic violence and sexual assault services for people with disabilities with the implementation of adaptive equipment and enhanced disability awareness among domestic violence and sexual assault agencies.

The North Carolina Disability and Health Program is housed in the North Carolina Office on Disability and Health, and is a collaboration between the Division of Public Health of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

North Dakota
Program activities include:

  • Forming a consumer-driven advisory council that reviews the progress of the program activities, reviews data related to the health of people with disabilities, assists with development of a strategic plan, and provides recommendations for addressing issues related to the health and wellness of North Dakota citizens with disabilities.
  • Reducing health disparities in the areas of obesity, diabetes, and tobacco use among people with disabilities.
  • Ensuring people have accurate information on disability and health issues and promoting communication, planning, and implementation of health- and disability-related services across service systems.

The North Dakota Disability and Health Program, named the Disability Health Project, is a collaboration between the North Dakota Center for Persons with Disabilities at Minot State University; the Center for Rural Health at the University of North Dakota; and the North Dakota State Health Department, Division of Chronic Disease, Office for the Elimination of Health Disparities.

Ohio
Program activities include:

  • Improving state-level surveillance and monitoring activities with epidemiologic expertise from the Government Resource Center (GRC).
  • Advancing health-related disability policy initiatives in Ohio.
  • Promoting the health of people with disabilities through demonstration projects and train-the-trainer sessions.
  • Improving access to health care for people with disabilities through our partnership with the Ohio Association of Community Health Centers.
  • Revising Ohio Emergency Management Plans and committees to be inclusive of people with disabilities, increasing the number of PWD who have emergency plans, training first responders on the needs of PWD, and improving the accessibility of emergency shelters.

The Ohio Disability and Health Program is composed of the Ohio Department of Health, the Ohio State University Nisonger Center, the University of Cincinnati UCEDD, and the Ohio Colleges of Medicine Government Resource Center (GRC).

Oregon
Program activities include:

  • Conducting Healthy Lifestyles workshops for people with disabilities (in English and Spanish) to improve quality of life in partnership with the Centers for Independent Living and other disability organizations.
  • Implementing the Right to Know campaign and breast health education events, providing mammography technologist training, and assessing Oregon’s mammography clinics to improve breast cancer awareness and screening among women with disabilities.
  • Providing individualized emergency preparedness training for Oregonians with disabilities as well as working with key community and state partners to ensure that emergency preparedness planning and training efforts include topics relevant to the health and safety of people with disabilities.

The Oregon Disability and Health Program is housed in the Oregon Office on Disability and Health at Oregon Health and Science University.

Rhode Island
Program activities include:

  • Promoting the health and wellness for people with disabilities through inclusive self-management, evidence-based programs.
  • Monitoring, supporting and implementing effective healthcare transition from pediatric to adulthood within a positive youth development framework that promotes self-determination and an activated patient model.
  • Providing professional development for practitioners working with people with disabilities, including training, targeted technical assistance, and access to assistive technology.
  • Addressing special needs of people with disabilities in health promotion programs, health strategic planning, emergency preparedness, preventative health screening programs, and healthcare facility access.
  • Increasing access to quality of health-related data of people with disabilities in Rhode Island and using epidemiology and evaluation analysis to monitor the health disparities.

The Rhode Island Disability and Health Program is housed in the Office of Special Needs of the Health Disparities and Access to Care Team at the Rhode Island Department of Health.

South Carolina
Program activities include:

  • Increasing the knowledge of professionals and paraprofessionals in South Carolina to meet the preventive, primary, and secondary health needs of people with disabilities.
  • Conducting ongoing surveillance with Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) and administrative datasets as secondary sources via the South Carolina Disability Cube Project.
  • Working to achieve more livable communities for people with disabilities by facilitating access to primary care physician offices, increasing access to fitness and recreation facilities, and working with community planning agencies to improve outdoor space using principals of universal design.

The South Carolina Disability and Health Program is housed in the University of South Carolina School of Medicine.

Recreation Opportunities For People With Disabilities

All Out Adventures
All Out Adventures provides outdoor accessible recreational opportunities throughout Massachusetts for people of all abilities, their families and friends. Summer programs include accessible kayaking, canoeing, hiking and cycling. Winter programs include snowshoeing, x-country skiing & sit-skiing, ice skating, sled skating and snowmobile rides.

Accessible Swimming Pools
Accessible Swimming Pools outdoor swimming pool lifts are available at all of the State Parks and Recreation Department’s 20 swimming pools. The pools are free. Contact pool directly for information about other site factors affecting accessibility.

AccesSport America
AccesSport America is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to the discovery of higher function, fitness, and fun for children and adults with disabilities through high-challenge sports, which include kayaking, windsurfing and water skiing.

Arcs.
Local Arcs provide a variety of social and recreational activities for children and teens with developmental disabilities.

Bostnet / Guide to Boston’s Before & After School Programs
Build the Out-of-School Time Network (BOSTnet) has built a network of out-of-school time (OST) resources and opportunities for all children and youth, including those from low-income families and youth with disabilities.

Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary
Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary offers nine miles of walking trails guiding through a variety of field, woodland, and wetland habitats. A quarter-mile, handicap accessible trail and boardwalk along the bank of Indian Brook. Universally accessible facilities: Nature Center, Restrooms, All Persons Trail.

BSC (Boston Sports Club) Adaptive Swim Program
On Monday and Wednesday evening, between 6:30pm and 7:30pm, BSC Waltham (840 Winter Street) offers an adaptive swim program for children, youth, adolescents and adults with disabilities in our 93 degree therapy pool. Volunteers between the ages of 16-20 from neighboring schools and organizations offer their time to pair with an individual seeking to increase range of motion, flexibility, and strength but most importantly to socialize with other individuals and families. Our adaptive swim program is offered during the school year (September thru May) in 8-week sessions at a cost of $200 per session. Our 120,000 square foot, state of the art facility can accommodate families in our men’s, women’s or family changing rooms, fully equipped with showers, lockers, restrooms, towels, and other amenities.

  • 781-522-2054
  • 781-522-2512

CAPEable Adventures
offers adaptive sports & therapeutic recreation activities to local residents and vacationers to the Cape.


Cape Cod Challenger Club

Cape Cod Challenger Club offers noncompetitive sports and recreation opportunities for children with disabilities.

Challenger Sport League
Some towns have challenger teams. The goal of the challenger team is to play with no pressure and to educate typical peers and their parents about sportsmanship. The program is available for boys and girls, ages 3 – 19 with all types of physical and developmental disabilities. Call your local town recreation department to find out if they offer challenger sports.

Children’s Physical Developmental Clinic at Bridgewater State University
BSC students from all majors have opportunities to volunteer as clinicians and work with children and youth with disabilities, ages 18 months to 18 years. Clinic dates are to the right on website’s homepage.

Choral / Community Voices
Open to individuals 16 years of age and older. Must be willing to be committed for 12 weeks. Provides a choral opportunity for adults and young adults with developmental delays. Singing in an ensemble, individuals will have the opportunity to develop and refine vocal technique, listening skills, and team-work. Repertoire will include songs from the masters, traditional and folk favorites, as well as pop and Broadway tunes. Performances are scheduled in December and June. Fee $156/fall, $243/spring.

Compelling Fitness
Compelling Fitness in Hanover provides group and / or individual physical fitness training for children and adults with special needs.

Fitness Program / Special Needs Training
Call your local YMCA.

Horseback Riding – PATH International Centers in Massachusetts
Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship, PATH International was formally known as North American Riding for the Handicapped Association (NARHA). Though PATH Intl. began with a focus on horseback riding as a form of physical and mental therapy, the organization and its dedicated members have since developed a multitude of different equine-related activities for therapeutic purposes, collectively known as equine-assisted activities and therapies (or EAAT).

JF&CS Sunday Respite Program
JF&CS Sunday Respite Program for Children with Developmental Disabilities including those on the Autism Spectrum. Program includes swimming, music and art therapy. The program meets at the Striar JCC in Stoughton from 1:00 -4:00. This program is run by JF&CS with additional funding from Eastern Bank.


Kids In Disability Sports (K.I.D.S)

  • Kids In Disability Sports (K.I.D.S) Thirteen specialized athletic programs are available. K.I.D.S. hosts dances, sports banquets, social activities and recreational events throughout the year. Serves individuals and families throughout Eastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire. Participants range in age 5-40 and have varying disabilities. http://www.kidsinc.us/
  • info@kidsinc.us
  • 1-866-712-7799

LIAM Nation Athletics (formerly known as FOSEK, Friends of Special Education Kidz)
sports leagues for special needs children in Tewksbury and surrounding communities in Merrimack Valley. Accomodates athletes of all abilities. Bombers Baseball, Striker Soccer, Little Reds Basketball.

Mass Dept of Conservation & Recreational Universal Access Program
Mass Dept of Conservation & Recreational Universal Access Program provides outdoor recreation opportunities in Massachusetts State Parks for visitors of all abilities. Accessibility to Massachusetts State Parks is achieved through site improvements, specialized adaptive recreation equipment, and accessible recreation programs.

Massachusetts Hospital School Wheelchair Recreation & Sports Program
Wheelchair sports and recreation program for children ages 9 to 21. Horseback riding, swimming and , Wheelchair Athletes Program.

Miracle League of Massachusetts
Miracle League of Massachusetts provides baseball for special needs children. Free to participate (includes uniform). Located at Blanchard Memorial Elementary School Ball Field in Boxborough.

New England Wheelchair Athletic Association (NEWAA)
Volunteer organization that helps individuals with physcial disabilities participate in recreational
and sports activities. The NEWAA provides opportunities for athletic competition by sponsoring
regional and local meets.

Partners for Youth With Disabilities Provides mentoring programs that assist young people reach their full potential. Partners provides several types of mentoring programs including one-to-one, group mentoring and e-mentoring.

Piers Park Sailing
Piers Park Sailing provides programs for disabled youth and adults aboard 23-foot sonar sailboats on a no charge basis. Serves those with amputations, paralysis, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, autism, hearing impaired, sight impaired and other disabilities. Successfully integrates youth with disabilities into summer youth sailing programs. Scholarships are available for all Adaptive sailing programs. “Yes You Can Sail” program Friday eves for $35.

  • (617) 561-6677

Senseability Gym
Senseability Gym serves special needs children in greater Hopedale area. Our mission is to provide a parent-led sensory gym, giving children with special needs a safe, fun, indoor area where they can play and accommodate their sensory needs.

Spaulding Adaptive Sports
Spaulding Adaptive Sports offers adaptive sports and recreation activities in Boston, Cape Cod and the North Shore. Includes wheelchair tennis, hand cycling, adaptive rowing, waterskiing or windsurfing.

Special Olympics Massachusetts (SOMA)
Special Olympics Massachusetts (SOMA) provides year round sports training and athletic competition for all persons with intellectual disabilities. Minimum age requirement is eight years of age. There is no maximum age requirement. SOMA summer games offers aquatics, athletics, gymnastics, sailing, tennis and volleyball. Go to above link to search SOMA region that covers your town.

Sudbury Adaptive Sports & Recreation
Programs for all ages and abilities.

Super Soccer Stars Shine
Our unique program uses soccer as a vehicle to teach life skills to individuals with developmental disabilities. Our innovative curriculum, designed by licensed educators and therapists, promotes the complete growth and development of each player. Our low player-to-coach ratios encourage and empower players to increase social potential with teammates, build self-awareness and confidence and advance gross and fine motor skills — all while each individual improves at his or her own pace! Located at 1 Thompson Square, Suite 301 in Charlestown. Call for information. Low pricing options and scholarship applications available.

Therapy and the Performing Arts – Cape Cod
Provides children and young adults with physical and intellectual disabilities the opportunity to enjoy various arts and recreational programs in addition to receiving therapeutic benefits from their participation. Children gain new and rewarding experiences from which they develop self-confidence, increase motor function, and have fun. Offers age appropriate programming on Cape Cod for children and young adults diagnosed with down syndrome, chromosomal abnormalies, cerebral palsy, genetic disorders and othe cognitive and physical disabilities. Classes are taught by certified instructors/ therapists with expertise in various disciplines. Programs are offered on a sliding scale fee based on the family’s ability to pay.


TILL Autism Support Center

TILL Autism Support Center has social programs for those with autism spectrum disorders. Programs include exciting Family Fun Days that include apple picking, rock climing, sledding, in-door gym time, zoo trips, holiday parties and much more.

Town Recreation Departments
Most programs are open to participants from neighboring towns. Call area town recreation department to find out if it has special programming for children with disabilities.

Wheelchair Sports & Recreation Assn.
Wheelchair Sports & Recreation Assn. offers information about beach wheelchairs, biking, boating and more!

TopSoccer Program / Outreach Program for Soccer
is a community-based training and team placement program for young athletes with a mental or physical disability. For additional information or would like to start a TOPSoccer Program in your community contact:

YMCAs
YMCAs are accessible and offer a range of classes. Call your local YMCA to find out what programs are available.

The Lowell YMCA “Adaptive Aquatics Program” accommodates children with mild to moderate neurological, physical, or social challenges.

  • (978) 454-7825.

Oak Square YMCA of Greater Boston at 615 Washington St, Brighton has a new adaptive fitness room & offers Adapted Adult Speciality Fitness Partnership Program on Wednesday and Saturday 11AM – 12:30PM on the Fitness Floor.

Hopkinton YMCA offers seasonal specialized programs. “Aim High” archery program and “Rock On!” is an outdoor ropes course and rock climbing for individuals with autism spectrum disorders or related social communication disorders.

  • 45 East Street in Hopkinton.

WaterFire Access Program
A water-taxi program at Dyer Street Dock in Providence Rhode Island which provides an unforgettable experience of the art work for children and adults with disabilities to assure that they can join in the most popular arts event in the state and share the experience with their families and friends. Reservations are required. Each Water Fire Access passenger can bring along one companion.

Waypoint Adventures
Adventures for people of all ages and abilities

Whole Children offers movement, art, recreation and music programs for infants, children and teens of all abilities. Located in Hadley.

Fully Accessible Playground

Fully Accessible Playground
Sudbury has a completely accessible play area that allows anyone with disabilities to be a part of a community area and develop physically, socially, and emotionally. Children and youth with an without disabilities now have an opportunity to develop tolerance, awareness, and compassion for others in a fun and socially positive atmosphere. Parents are able to walk or wheel onto the structures to play with their children and the wheelchair friendly surface allows children and parents to move about the playground with ease. The playground is located across the street from the Fairbank Community Center at Haskell Field. GPS 40 Fairbank Road Sudbury, MA 01776

Inclusive and Adaptive Recreation
The Adaptive Sports & Recreation Program at the Sudbury Park & Recreation Department is committed to providing year round, affordable, community based programming for individuals with disabilities. Offering comprehensive and varied programs of recreation activities as well as resources for residents, we truly recognize the importance of recreation and leisure in the lives of all community members. The Adaptive Sports & Recreation program strives to improve the quality of life for children and adults with disabilities through continued and successful involvement in sports and recreation programs here in their own back yard.

Program goals include:

  • To increase the participation of children and adults with disabilities in existing parks and recreation programs.
  • To provide person-centered, individualized support to meet the needs of the participating individual.
  • To enhance the physical, mental, emotional, and social well-being of children and adults with disabilities via their participation in the recreation activities provided by the department.
  • To increase the independence, confidence, and self-esteem of the children and adults with disabilities taking part in the department’s programs.
  • To provide opportunities for people with disabilities to cultivate new recreational interests, meet new people, and possibly develop new friendships.
  • To advocate for individuals with disabilities’ rights to recreation participation, community access, and community involvement.

Don’t Forget To Mark Your Calenders The Wounded Vet Run Is Just One Week Away!!

Wounded-Warriors
Wounded Veteran Run

Sunday, April 27, 2014 [Rain Date: Sunday, May 4]

Advanced ticket purchase and info at: www.TheyFoughtWeRide.com

Motorcycle Ride and Concert
$20 a rider, $10 per passenger, $20 Walk-Ins
Registration starts 10am – Kickstands up 1:30pm
Purpose: To support three of New England’s most severely wounded Veterans:

Honoring:

  • Spc. Andy Kingsley from Athol, MA
  • Master Sgt. Joseph Deslauriers from Bellingham, MA
  • Cpl. Kevin Dubois from Rhode Island

START: Boston Harley Davidson, 1760 Revere Beach Pkway, Everett MA
END: Suffolk Downs, 525 McClellan Hwy, E. Boston, MA

Ceremony – Food – Music by Tigerlily – Beer Tent – Vendors – Raffle Items – Stunt Shows

Call Andrew for questions: 903-340-9402
Vendors call: 617-416-0782

Bike not required to participate, EVERYONE WELCOME!

The Bridgewater Business Association 2014 Meet & Greet

The Bridgewater Business Association 2014 meet & greet

The Bridgewater Business Association will present their 3rd Annual Meet & Greet Tonight (5:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m.) at Sullivan Tire and Auto Service located at 300 Bedford Street (Route 18) in Bridgewater, MA.

Please join the BBA for an evening open to all businesses in the greater Bridgewater area and beyond. This FREE event includes complimentary food and cocktails, with an evening of networking with current BBA members, local businesses, community leaders, and University representatives. Come out for a fun, informational evening, and meet some new friends and neighbors in the Bridgewater business community and beyond.

The 2014 Meet & Greet is currently sponsored by the following: Bridgewater Savings Bank, Sullivan Tire and Auto Service/Bridgewater, Rockland Trust, Claremont Companies, New England Party Supplies, Bryan Parrish Home Inspections, Chase Corporation, Avery Photography, and Joe’s Service Station.

Join the VMi New England Team at the Wounded Veteran Run

Wounded-Warriors
Wounded Veteran Run
Sunday, April 27, 2014 [Rain Date: Sunday, May 4]

Advanced ticket purchase and info at: www.TheyFoughtWeRide.com

Motorcycle Ride and Concert
$20 a rider, $10 per passenger, $20 Walk-Ins
Registration starts 10am – Kickstands up 1:30pm
Purpose: To support three of New England’s most severely wounded Veterans:

Honoring:

  • Spc. Andy Kingsley from Athol, MA
  • Master Sgt. Joseph Deslauriers from Bellingham, MA
  • Cpl. Kevin Dubois from Rhode Island

START: Boston Harley Davidson, 1760 Revere Beach Pkway, Everett MA
END: Suffolk Downs, 525 McClellan Hwy, E. Boston, MA

Ceremony – Food – Music by Tigerlily – Beer Tent – Vendors – Raffle Items – Stunt Shows

Call Andrew for questions: 903-340-9402
Vendors call: 617-416-0782

Bike not required to participate, EVERYONE WELCOME!

Road To Independence Comedy Night

Road To Independence Comedy Night
Road To Independence: Comedy Night

When?: March 28th 2014 at 7:00pm

Where?: Elks club in Middleboro – 24 High Street Middleboro MA 02346

How Much?: $25.00

Why?: For a night of food, laughter and to help out a good cause!

Grants and Funds Available for People with Disabilities:
 Listed by State



Alabama

  • People with developmental disabilities and their families may apply for Short-Term Assistance & Referral Programs (STAR) to address short-term needs, maximum of $2,500 per recipient. Used for: environmental modifications, adaptive equipment; services such as behavioral training, personal care, medical appointments. It also offers an alternative loan program. Contact: Helen Baker, 334-293-7012.

Alaska

  • The state of Alaska provides Developmental Disabilities (DD) Mini-Grants, maximum of $2,500/year for beneficiaries with disabilities with funding from the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority (AMHTA). Used for: unmet medical, dental, hearing, therapeutic equipment and services; home improvement needs. Contact: Amy Westfall, amyw@stonesoupgroup.org.
  • People with developmental disabilities and their families may apply for Short-Term Assistance & Referral Programs (STAR) to address short-term needs, maximum of $2,500 per recipient. Used for: environmental modifications, adaptive equipment; services such as behavioral training, personal care, medical appointments. It also offers an alternative loan program. Contact: Laurie Cooper, 907-465-3135,laurie.cooper@alaska.gov.
  • National Multiple Sclerosis Society – Alaska may provide funding for those living in Alaska. Contact: 907-562-7347.
  • Paralyzed Veterans Association (PVA) provides support to paralyzed veterans. Contact: Northwest Chapter of PVA, 800-336-9782.

Arizona

  • Arizona Loan$ for Assistive Technology (AzLAT) provides two financial loan programs for those with physical disabilities, AzLAT and S.E.E.D. Loan$ to support self-employed entrepreneurs with disabilities. Loans range from $500 to $10,000 Contact: Pamela Alcala, 602-776-4670, pamela.alcala@nau.edu.
  • The Arizona Technology Access  Program (AzTAP) provides a network for people with disabilities to find adapted equipment or assistive technology (AT) in the hands of someone who can benefit it. These are listed by individuals; some items are listed as free, others do have an associated cost.

Arkansas

  • Independent Choices focuses on helping adults with physical disabilities receive direct care in the home. They may provide funding support. Contact: 800-682-0044.

California

  • Access for Athletes – Challenged Athletes Foundation offers grants for athletes with physical disabilities. Grants are awarded to purchase equipment including sports wheelchairs, handcycles, mono skis and sports prosthetics. Contact: JulieAnne White, 858-210-3506, julieanne@challengedathletes.org.

Colorado

  • University of Colorado Denver services the AT Funding $ources website, which helps those with physical disabilities in Colorado find state and county funding opportunities. Searchable by age, disability, county and area of need. Contact: 800-255-3477, at@at-partners.org.


Connecticut


Delaware

  • The Adam Taliaferro Foundation provides financial support to student-athletes who are injured in sanctioned team events. Contact: ostrumg@yahoo.com.
  • The Specialized Services Fund (SSF) from DSAAPD provides funding to help those with physical disabilities with the costs of transportation, home modification and AT devices. Maximum lifetime funds: $10,000. Contact: New Castle County, 302-453-3820; Kent & Sussex Counties, 302-424-7310.

District of Columbia

  • Assistive Technology Program offers various resources to help people with physical disabilities find technology to improve their quality of life. It includes funding opportunities as well as resources to find the right solutions. Contact: 202-547-0918.

Florida

  • The Millennium Angel Foundation provides grants to those who have a physical disability because of an accident. Contact: 800-573-8853, angelfoundation@msettlements.com.

Georgia

  • Tools for Life offers a variety of services to ensure those with physical disabilities have access to technology in their lives. Programs include demonstrations, funding opportunities, reuse program, evaluations and assessments. Contact: 404-638-0390, info@gatfl.org.

Hawaii

  • Assistive Technology Resource of Hawaii offers various resources to help people with physical disabilities find technology to improve their quality of life. It includes funding opportunities as well as resources to find the right solutions. Contact: 808-532-7110.

Idaho

  • Idaho Assistive Technology Project provides assistive technology resources for those with physical disabilities in Idaho. Resources include financing, exchange program and training. Contact: 208-885-6097,sueh@uidaho.edu.
  • The University of Idaho offers Operation Education for military veterans who have been disabled in service. It offers scholarships and funding opportunities for college. Contact: 208-885-9026,operationeducation@uidaho.edu.
  • The Arlen B. Crouch Foundation may offer funding for those with physical disabilities. Contact: 208-324-3117.


Illinois

  • The Multiple Sclerosis Foundation offers the Brighter Tomorrow Grant to provide goods/services to improve quality of life of those with disabilities. Max award of $1,000. Contact: 1-888-MSFOCUS.
  • Illinois’ Cystic Fibrosis Foundation offers a scholarship for young adults with disabilities that wish to further their education after high school. Contact: 847-328-0127, mkbcfsf@aol.com.

Indiana

  • Indiana Assistive Technology Act provides alternate funding options for assistive technology equipment and services. In addition, the office provides device training and loans. Contact: 888-466-1314.

Iowa

  • In partnership with the University of Iowa, the Iowa Program for Assistive Technology offers funding, training and other programs to help those with physical disabilities obtain assistive technology equipment and services. Contact: 319-356-4463.

Kansas

  • The Kansas Assistive Technology Cooperative (KATCO) is an organization run by consumers that coordinates and provides finances for the purchase of assistive technology services and equipment to help people with disabilities gain economic and functional independence. Contact: 866-465-2826.
  • Assistive Technology for Kansans provides financing options for assistive technology equipment. It also offers device training and “try out” programs. Contact: 800-KAN-DOIT.

Kentucky

Louisiana

  • The Louisiana Assistive Technology Network provides loans, funding opportunities, training and other programs to provide assistive technology equipment and services to those with physical disabilities. Contact: 225-925-9500.


Maine

  • Multiple Sclerosis Society – Maine Chapter provides funding for software, tools and durable medical equipment. Contact: 800-344-4867, info@msmaine.org.
  • Keep Seniors Home provides funding to help seniors with mobility issues as they age. Funding is available for home modifications and renovations. Contact: 207-645-3764.


Maryland


Massachusetts

  • Travis Roy Foundation offers individual grants to help those with spinal cord injuries. The funds can be used to upgrade and maintain equipment, including vehicles. Contact: 617-619-8257.
  • MassMatch provides funding opportunities for assistive technology. It also offers programs including device training and equipment loans. Contact: 617-204-3851.


Michigan

  • The Michigan Assistive Technology Program provides training, funding opportunities and other programs to help those with physical disabilities obtain assistive technology equipment and services. Contact: 517-333-2477.

Minnesota

  • The STAR Program offers funding resources for those with physical disabilities to obtain assistive technology equipment and services. Contact: 651-201-2640.

Mississippi

  • The Mississippi Assistive Technology Division provides training, funding opportunities and other programs to help those with physical disabilities obtain assistive technology equipment and services. Contact: 800-443-1000.

Missouri

  • Missouri Assistive Technology provides funding opportunities, device loans and training programs for those with physical disabilities. Contact: 816-655-6700, moat1501@att.net.

Montana

  • MonTech provides funding opportunities, device loans and training programs for those with physical disabilities. Contact: 406-243-5751, montech@ruralinstitute.umt.edu.

Nebraska

  • Assistive Technology Partnership provides funding opportunities, device loans and training programs for those with physical disabilities. Contact: 888-806-6287.

Nevada

  • The Assistive Technology for Independent Living provides funding and resources for assistive technology equipment and services for those with physical disabilities. The organization offers other programs, including training. Contact: Northern Nevada, 775-353-3599; Southern Nevada, 702-333-1038.

New Hampshire

  • Assistive Technology in New Hampshire offers funding opportunities for those with physical disabilities. Funding can be used for assistive technology equipment, services, etc. It also offers training and other programs. Contact: 603-862-4320.

New Jersey

  • The Adam Taliaferro Foundation provides financial support to student-athletes who are injured in sanctioned team events. Contact: ostrumg@yahoo.com.
  • The Assistive Technology Center provides funding resources for those with physical disabilities who wish to obtain assistive technology equipment or services. Contact: 888-322-1918.

New Mexico

  • New Mexico Technology Assistance Program offers loans, donation programs, training and other resources to help those with physical disabilities. The program focuses on helping those with disabilities obtain the assistive technology they need. Contact: 505-425-3690.

New York

North Carolina

North Dakota

Ohio

Oklahoma

  • Oklahoma Assistive Technology Center offers resources so people with disabilities are able to obtain assistive technology. The agency offers programs including funding and training. Contact: 405-271-3625.

Oregon

  • Assistive Technology offers resources so people with disabilities are able to obtain assistive technology. The agency offers programs including funding and training. Contact: 541-440-4791.
  • Incight Education offers a scholarship for those with disabilities. The scholarship is used for those who are full-time students at a trade school, college or university. Contact: 971-244-0305.
  • The Blanche Fischer Foundation provides grants to those with physical disabilities residing in the state of Oregon. To be considered, residents must show a financial need for funding relating directly to the disability. Grants can be used to pay for disability equipment, access ramps and transportation to related conferences. Â Contact: 503-819-8205.
  • Mobility Unlimited helps those with physical disabilities obtain mobility equipment so they are able to live independently as well as maintain employment. Contact: 877-516-0605.

Pennsylvania

  • The Adam Taliaferro Foundation provides financial support to student-athletes who are injured in sanctioned team events. Contact: ostrumg@yahoo.com.
  • Pennsylvania Assistive Technology Foundation offers resources so people with disabilities are able to obtain assistive technology. The agency offers programs including funding and training. Contact: 484-674-0506.

Rhode Island

  • Assistive Technology Access Partnership offers resources so people with disabilities are able to obtain assistive technology. The agency offers programs including funding and training. Contact:requests@ors.ri.gov.

South Carolina

South Dakota

  • DakotaLink offers resources so people with disabilities are able to obtain assistive technology. The agency offers programs including funding and training. Contact: 803-645-0673.

Tennessee

Texas

  • Texas Assistive Technology Network offers resources so people with disabilities are able to obtain assistive technology. The agency offers programs including funding and training. Contact: 713-744-6559.

Utah

  • Utah Assistive Technology Program offers resources so people with disabilities are able to obtain assistive technology. The agency offers programs including funding and training. Contact: 435-797-9032.

Vermont

Virginia

  • Virginia Assistive Technology System offers resources so people with disabilities are able to obtain assistive technology. The agency offers programs including funding and training. Contact: 804-662-9990.

Washington

West Virginia

  • West Virginia Assistive Technology System offers resources so people with disabilities are able to obtain assistive technology. The agency offers programs including funding and training. Contact: 304-293-4692.

Wisconsin

Wyoming

  • Daniel’s Fund offers scholarships to help individuals with disabilities fund college. Scholarship amounts vary. Contact: 307-673-1987.
  • WIND Assistive Technology Resources offers resources so people with disabilities are able to obtain assistive technology. The agency offers programs including funding and training. Contact: 888-989-9463.

Massachusetts Mobility Van Resources

Massachusetts Office on Disability (MOD)

Description:
The Massachusetts Office on Disability (MOD) is the state advocacy agency for people with disabilities. MOD’s goal is to make sure that people with disabilities have the legal rights, opportunities, support services, and accommodations they need to take part in all aspects of life in Massachusetts. MOD helps people of all ages.

One of MOD’s main duties is to make sure that the state government, the local governments, and private organizations comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. MOD informs residents about their rights under the law, investigates complaints, and works to correct any violations. MOD services are free.

Services: The Massachusetts Office of Disability has three main programs:

  • The Government Services Program provides technical assistance and advice to state and local governments on all disability-related issues. MOD makes sure that government regulations and policies meet the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act. MOD offers guidance to public service agencies and makes public policy recommendations on behalf of residents with disabilities.
  • The Client Services Program helps individuals who need help with disability-related problems. MOD operates an information and referral system to help residents find the services they need and learn about their legal rights. MOD also investigates complaints and helps correct civil rights violations. MOD’s Client Assistance Program (CAP) helps residents who are having problems with federally funded vocational rehabilitation and independent living programs.
  • The Community Services Program helps communities become more responsive to the needs of residents with disabilities. MOD trains individuals and community organizations to advocate for the rights of the disabled. MOD offers technical assistance and information about accessibility laws. The goal is to improve access to public and private places, programs, and services for people with all types of disabilities.

Contact Information:
Massachusetts Office on Disability
One Ashburton Place, Room 1305
Boston, MA 02108

Telephone: 617-727-7440
Toll-free: Voice/TTY: 800-322-2020
Fax: 617-727-0965

Web site: Massachusetts Office on Disability (MOD)

Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC)

Description:
The Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC) helps people with disabilities find employment and live independently. The MRC serves Massachusetts residents age 18 and older. The MRC helps people with all types of disabilities except blindness. Legally blind residents can get services from the Massachusetts Commission for the Blind.

Services:
The MRC is the state agency in Massachusetts responsible for Vocational Rehabilitation (VR), Community Services (CS), and Disability Determination Services (DDS). The MRC also assists with public benefit programs, housing, transportation, and consumer issues. Some MRC programs and services have specific eligibility requirements. Most are free.

The Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Program helps people with disabilities find work or go back to work. The VR program works with various organizations in the community to help create jobs for Massachusetts residents with disabilities.

The Office of Community Services (CS) offers a variety of services to help people with disabilities live independently in their communities:

  1. The Brain Injury and Statewide Specialized Community Services (BISSCS) program helps Massachusetts residents who have externally caused traumatic brain injuries.
  2. Protective Services tries to prevent the physical, emotional, or sexual abuse of people with disabilities by their caregivers.
  3. Independent Living Centers provide advocacy, personal care management, and independent living skills training.
  4. The T22 (Turning 22) Independent Living Support Program helps young people with physical mobility disabilities who want to live independently in their communities.
  5. The Home Care Assistance Program for disabled adults under age 60 provides help with homemaking tasks (see Home Care Assistance Program).
  6. Other in-home and community living support services are also available.
  7. The Assistive Technology (AT) Program buys and installs assistive devices and provides training and follow-up for users.
  • Disability Determination Services (DDS), funded by the Social Security Administration (SSA), determines medical eligibility for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. Disability examiners use medical and vocational information to make their decisions.

MassMATCH

Web site: MassMATCH

MassMATCH is a statewide program to help Massachusetts residents with disabilities find, pay for, and use assistive technology (AT) that can make a difference in their lives. The MassMatch web site offers information and advice about:

  • assistive technology (AT) products
  • AT demonstration centers
  • AT funding sources (insurance, loans, government assistance, private charities)
  • where to buy, borrow, swap, and sell AT equipment

MassMATCH (Maximize Assistive Technology in Consumers’ Hands) is a partnership between the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission, other state human services agencies, and community-based organizations.

Contact Information:
Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission
Fort Point Place, Suite 600
27 Wormwood Street
Boston, MA 02210-1616

Telephone: Voice/TTY: 617-204-3600
Toll-free: Voice/TTY: 1-800-245-6543
Disabled Persons Protection Hotline: 1-800-426-9009
Ombudsman: 617-204-3603
Fax: 617-727-1354

Web site: Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC)

Massachusetts Commission for the Blind (MCB)

Description:
The Massachusetts Commission for the Blind (MCB) provides rehabilitation and social services to legally blind Massachusetts residents of all ages. These services help people who are legally blind live independently as active members of their communities. The MCB contacts all legally blind people in the state to offer support services.

Eye care providers in Massachusetts are required by law to report all cases of legal blindness to the MCB. The MCB keeps a confidential registry of all legally blind people in the state. The Commission issues Certificates of Legal Blindness to people on its register. These certificates allow legally blind residents to get exemptions and deductions on income tax, property tax, and auto excise tax. The Commission also issues an identification card, similar to a driver’s license, for personal identification and proof of legal blindness.

Services: The Massachusetts Commission for the Blind provides the following services:

  • Vocational Rehabilitation (VR), including diagnostic studies, counseling and guidance, individual plans for employment (IPE), restorative and training services, rehabilitation and mobility instruction, assistive technology, adaptive housing, job placement, and post-employment services
  • Assistive technology
  • Independent living social services, including homemaking assistance, assistive devices, mobility instruction, and peer support groups
  • Specialized services for blind seniors (BRIDGE program)
  • Specialized services for blind children, including referrals for early intervention, public benefits, respite care, and socialization and recreation programs
  • Specialized services for blind/deaf individuals and others with multiple disabilities
  • Rehabilitation instruction, including Braille and typing, use of low-vision devices, labeling and record keeping, food preparation, home safety, and self-care techniques
  • Orientation and mobility instruction, including guide dogs
  • MassHealth services for financially eligible people who are legally blind, including long-term care services, hospital services, personal care attendants, private duty nursing, and transportation services
  • Consumer assistance and advocacy for issues related to blindness such as housing and job discrimination, guide dog issues, or transportation problems

Most services are offered free of charge to all registered legally blind Massachusetts residents. Some services have additional eligibility requirements.

Contact Information:
Massachusetts Commission for the Blind
48 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02111

Toll-free Voice: 800-392-6450
Toll-free TDD: 800-392-6556
Fax: 617-626-7685

Web site: Massachusetts Commission for the Blind (MCB)

Massachusetts Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (MCDHH)

Description:
The Massachusetts Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (MCDHH) is the state government agency that works on behalf of Massachusetts residents who are deaf or hard-of-hearing. The MCDHH serves as an advocate to make sure that deaf and hard-of-hearing residents have the same access to information, services, education, and other opportunities as the hearing population.

Services: Some of the services that the MCDHH provides are:

  • Communication access, training, and technology services
  • Case management services, including specialized services for children
  • Interpreter and CART translation services
Note: CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation) service translates spoken words into a visual print display that can be read on a computer monitor or other display device.
  • Independent Living Programs, including peer mentoring, assistive technology, consumer education, self-advocacy, and other independent living skills

Contact Information:
Massachusetts Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (MCDHH)
Executive Office of Health and Human Services
600 Washington Street 
Boston, MA 02111
Telephone: 617-740-1600 / TTY: 617-740-1700
Toll-free: Voice: 1-800-882-1155 / TTY: 1-800-530-7570
Fax: 617-740-1880
Web site: Massachusetts Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (MCDHH)

The Savvy Consumer’s Guide to Hearing Loss
 MCDHH Resource Directory
Regional Offices of the MCDHH
Interpreter and CART Services
Independent Living Services

Massachusetts Department of Mental Health (DMH)

Description:
The Massachusetts Department of Mental Health is the state agency that oversees treatment programs, support services, regulations, and public policy for Massachusetts residents with mental illness. The DMH supports a community-based system of care.

The Department of Mental Health serves adults with long-term or serious mental illness, and children and adolescents with serious emotional disturbances. For adults, the mental disorder must be persistent and must interfere with the ability to carry out daily life activities. For children, the disorder must limit the child’s ability to function in family, school, or community activities.

Residents must file an application and get DMH approval before they can get services. Applications are available on the DMH web site at DMH Service Application Forms and Appeal Guidelines. Applicants can get short-term services while waiting for DMH approval for continuing care.

Services:
The DMH provides continuing care services to Massachusetts residents who cannot get needed services from other agencies or programs. DMH services include:

  • continuing care inpatient facilities
  • residential treatment centers
  • in-home treatment
  • outpatient services
  • skills training
  • supported employment
  • case management

Contact Information:
Massachusetts Department of Mental Health (DMH)
Central Office
25 Staniford Street
Boston, MA 02114

Telephone: 617-626-8000
TTY: 617-727-9842
E-mail: DMH Email
Web site: Massachusetts Department of Mental Health
DMH Local Offices: DMH Offices

Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services (DDS)

Description:
The Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services (DDS) is the state agency that provides support services to Massachusetts residents with intellectual disabilities. The DDS works with many provider agencies throughout the state to offer services to adults and children and their caregivers. Individuals with intellectual disabilities and their families play an active role in making decisions about their lives and in choosing the support services they want and need.

The DDS has an application for services that must be completed before services can be approved. The application is available on the DDS web site: Application for DDS Eligibility

Services: The DDS offers a wide range of support services for adults, including:

  • Service coordination
  • Housing options
  • Employment skills training and transportation to work
  • Non-work related skills training
  • Family support services, including respite care
  • Life skills training and support (food shopping, cooking, etc.)

DDS’s services for children include:

  • Service coordination
  • Family support services, including respite care
  • Partnership program for families of children with significant health care needs
  • Autism support centers
  • After-school and summer camp programs

Contact Information:
Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services
Central Office
500 Harrison Avenue
Boston, MA 02118

Telephone: Voice: 617-727-5608
TTY: 617-624-7783
Fax: 617-624-7577

Web site: Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services (DDS)

Local DDS offices: DDS Area Office Locator

Disability Law Center (DLC)

Description:
The Disability Law Center (DLC) is a private non-profit law firm that gives free legal assistance to Massachusetts residents with disabilities who have been discriminated against because of their disability.

The Disability Law Center helps people with all types of disabilities, including physical, psychiatric, sensory, and cognitive. The DLC provides legal help with problems such as discrimination, abuse or neglect, or denial of services, when they are related to a person’s disability.

Services:
Services include information and referral, technical assistance, legal representation for individuals and groups, and advocacy. The Disability Law Center helps with disability-related legal problems in these areas:

  • Access to community services
  • Special education
  • Health care
  • Disability benefits
  • Rights and conditions in facilities

The DLC does not have the resources to help everyone who has a disability-related legal problem. The DLC sets priorities each year based on the needs of the community. See DLC Priorities. The DLC chooses cases that will have the most impact on the lives of people with disabilities.

Contact Information:
Disability Law Center (DLC)
11 Beacon Street, Suite 925
Boston, MA 02108

Voice telephone: 617-723-8455 / 800-872-9992
TTY: 617-227-9464 / 800-381-0577

Web site: Disability Law Center

DisabilityInfo.org

Description:
The DisabilityInfo.org web site helps people with disabilities, their families, and service providers find disability-related resources in Massachusetts. It has information on a wide variety of programs, agencies, and services for Massachusetts residents with disabilities.

The site is maintained by New England INDEX, a nonprofit technology group. New England INDEX collects information from over 100 members of the Massachusetts Network of Information Providers for People with Disabilities (MNIP) and puts the information on one web site for easy access.

Services:
On the DisabilityInfo.org web site, you can find:

  • disability programs, services, and agencies in Massachusetts
  • disability consultants, including advocates, educators, therapists, counselors, and other specialists
  • physicians and dentists with experience working with people with disabilities
  • local and regional offices for human service agencies
  • local disability agencies that you can call for help
  • fact sheets about many different types of disabilities
  • disability-related laws and regulations
  • disability news
  • information about assistive technology
  • other resources for people with disabilities

Contact Information:
Web site: DisabilityInfo.org

New England INDEX
200 Trapelo Road
Waltham, MA 02452-6319

Telephone: 781-642-0248
Toll-free: Voice: 800-642-0249
Toll-free: TTY: 800-764-0200

E-mail: info@DisabilityInfo.org

Wheelchair Van Fundraiser

Keep Newey Mobile Campaign

Keep Newey Mobile The Keep Newey Mobile Campaign is a fundraising effort for Josh Newey of Bridgewater, MA. This was created to raise funds to replace his current mobility van; a rusty and unreliable ’99 Caravan with 210,000 miles! We welcome your participation through online donations, or by attending our event.

Make a donation towards Josh’s new wheelchair accessible van here!

The next event for the Keep Newey Mobile Campaign is  a Craft and Vendor Fair organized by the Bridgewater Community Lions Cub which is being held at our Mobility Center!

Bridgewater Lions Club

Start your holiday shopping a little early and help support The Keep Newey Mobile Campaign! All proceeds go toward a new wheelchair accessible van for Josh!

When:
Saturday, October 19, 2013
10 AM -3 PM

Where:
VMi New England Mobility Center
1000 Main Street
Bridgewater, MA

Vendors:
Silpada, Tastefully Simple, Mary Kay, Lia Sophia, Thirty- One, Pampered Chef, and Scentsy. There will also be various crafters.

 

Keep Newey Mobile!

Join us at our Mobility Center this Saturday to help Keep Newey Mobile

Keep Newey Mobile - VMi New England

This event – a Craft and Vendor Fair is being held by the Bridgewater Community Lions Club to benefit the Keep Newey Mobile Campaign.

The Keep Newey Mobile Campaign is a fundraising effort for Josh Newey of Bridgewater, MA. This was created to raise funds to replace his current mobility van; a rusty and unreliable ’99 Caravan with 210,000 miles! We welcome your participation by attending this event, and/or through online donations.


Bridgewater Lions Club
When:
Saturday, October 19, 2013
10 AM -3 PM

Where:
VMi New England Mobility Center
1000 Main Street
Bridgewater, MA


Vendors:

Silpada, Tastefully Simple, Mary Kay, Lia Sophia, Thirty- One, Pampered Chef, and Scentsy.
There will also be various crafters.

_________________________________________________

Josh’s Story

Growing up in a rural town in western Massachusetts, Josh always loved adventure and the outdoors. He was an active member of the Boy Scouts and a motorsports enthusiast. Josh couldn’t get enough of go-karts, snowmobiles, dirt-bikes, radio controlled toys, tractors, trucks, and anything else with a motor! Some of Josh’s favorite projects as a child and teen included rebuilding small engines and restoring snowmobiles. Josh attended a vocational-agricultural high school and was planning a career in equipment operation, maintenance and repair.

January 11th 1997 is the day Josh describes as the “best and worst day of his life”. Josh was 19 years old and in northern Vermont doing one of his favorite activities, snowmobiling with friends. As nighttime approached and the weather turned poor, visibility was low. Unfamiliar with the trails, and trying to maintain pace with the others in the group Josh came to a bend in the trail and was not able to make the turn quickly enough. He went off the trail and his head collided with a tree branch, breaking his neck and compromising his spinal cord. Josh also suffered a severe compound leg fracture. Josh’s accident was far out in the woods and although he never lost consciousness, it was only because of exhausting efforts by some of the others he was riding with that his life was saved. They knocked on doors seeking a phone to call for emergency help while others stayed behind to stabilize Josh. With the help of good Samaritan locals using a ladder as a backboard, he was carried to the back of a pickup truck, and transported to a location where an ambulance could finally take him to the hospital.

After being diagnosed with a C5/6 incomplete spinal cord injury (SCI), Josh was left a quadriplegic. He has paralysis from the chest down, with limited use of his arms and hands. He spent 4 months in acute rehabilitation learning to care for himself, transfer to and from his wheelchair, and how to embrace this new lifestyle. He moved to the South Shore of MA to live with his father so he could be closer to the medical resources he needed including outpatient therapy. The next several years were spent striving towards living an independent life again. After 3 years and some generous donations, Josh was physically as well as financially ready to drive again with the use of an accessible van and hand controls. The very same van we’re trying to replace with this campaign. (After 13 years & 206,000 miles it has served him well but it is used up!)

Josh attended Bridgewater State College and graduated in 2005 with a bachelor’s degree in Communications. He was a member of the Peer Leadership Program, the Public Relations Student Society of America, and he managed the swim team. He later returned to school for a post-baccalaureate certificate in Graphic and Web Design.

Today,  36-year-old Josh lives on his own in Bridgewater MA., works part-time as a marketing specialist, and strives to lead an active, healthy lifestyle. He is completely independent and a social creature by nature. Josh enjoys live music, traveling, visiting with friends and family, and anything related to motorsports!

Josh is an amazing human being who has overcome so many obstacles while maintaining a positive, upbeat attitude. He takes every day as it comes and his favorite expression is “Let the Good Times Roll”.

Massachusetts Mobility Resources

Massachusetts Office on Disability (MOD)
Description:
The Massachusetts Office on Disability (MOD) is the state advocacy agency for people with disabilities. MOD’s goal is to make sure that people with disabilities have the legal rights, opportunities, support services, and accommodations they need to take part in all aspects of life in Massachusetts. MOD helps people of all ages.

One of MOD’s main duties is to make sure that the state government, the local governments, and private organizations comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. MOD informs residents about their rights under the law, investigates complaints, and works to correct any violations. MOD services are free.

Services: The Massachusetts Office of Disability has three main programs:

  • The Government Services Program provides technical assistance and advice to state and local governments on all disability-related issues. MOD makes sure that government regulations and policies meet the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act. MOD offers guidance to public service agencies and makes public policy recommendations on behalf of residents with disabilities.
  • The Client Services Program helps individuals who need help with disability-related problems. MOD operates an information and referral system to help residents find the services they need and learn about their legal rights. MOD also investigates complaints and helps correct civil rights violations. MOD’s Client Assistance Program (CAP) helps residents who are having problems with federally funded vocational rehabilitation and independent living programs.
  • The Community Services Program helps communities become more responsive to the needs of residents with disabilities. MOD trains individuals and community organizations to advocate for the rights of the disabled. MOD offers technical assistance and information about accessibility laws. The goal is to improve access to public and private places, programs, and services for people with all types of disabilities.

Contact Information:
Massachusetts Office on Disability
One Ashburton Place, Room 1305
Boston, MA 02108
Telephone:617-727-7440
Toll-free: Voice/TTY: 800-322-2020
Fax: 617-727-0965
Web site: Massachusetts Office on Disability (MOD)

Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC)
Description:
The Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC) helps people with disabilities find employment and live independently. The MRC serves Massachusetts residents age 18 and older. The MRC helps people with all types of disabilities except blindness. Legally blind residents can get services from the Massachusetts Commission for the Blind.

Services:

  • The MRC is the state agency in Massachusetts responsible for Vocational Rehabilitation (VR), Community Services (CS), and Disability Determination Services (DDS). The MRC also assists with public benefit programs, housing, transportation, and consumer issues. Some MRC programs and services have specific eligibility requirements. Most are free.
  • The Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Program helps people with disabilities find work or go back to work. The VR program works with various organizations in the community to help create jobs for Massachusetts residents with disabilities.
  • The Office of Community Services (CS) offers a variety of services to help people with disabilities live independently in their communities:
  1. The Brain Injury and Statewide Specialized Community Services (BISSCS) program helps Massachusetts residents who have externally caused traumatic brain injuries.
  2. Protective Services tries to prevent the physical, emotional, or sexual abuse of people with disabilities by their caregivers.
  3. Independent Living Centers provide advocacy, personal care management, and independent living skills training.
  4. The T22 (Turning 22) Independent Living Support Program helps young people with physical mobility disabilities who want to live independently in their communities.
  5. The Home Care Assistance Program for disabled adults under age 60 provides help with homemaking tasks (see Home Care Assistance Program).
  6. Other in-home and community living support services are also available.
  7. The Assistive Technology (AT) Program buys and installs assistive devices and provides training and follow-up for users.
  • Disability Determination Services (DDS), funded by the Social Security Administration (SSA), determines medical eligibility for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. Disability examiners use medical and vocational information to make their decisions.

MassMATCH
MassMATCH is a statewide program to help Massachusetts residents with disabilities find, pay for, and use assistive technology (AT) that can make a difference in their lives. The MassMatch web site offers information and advice about:

  • assistive technology (AT) products
  • AT demonstration centers
  • AT funding sources (insurance, loans, government assistance, private charities)
  • where to buy, borrow, swap, and sell AT equipment

MassMATCH (Maximize Assistive Technology in Consumers’ Hands) is a partnership between the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission, other state human services agencies, and community-based organizations.

Contact Information:
Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission
Fort Point Place, Suite 600
27 Wormwood Street
Boston, MA 02210-1616
Telephone: Voice/TTY: 617-204-3600
Toll-free: Voice/TTY: 1-800-245-6543
Web site: MassMATCH

Massachusetts Commission for the Blind (MCB)
Description
:
The Massachusetts Commission for the Blind (MCB) provides rehabilitation and social services to legally blind Massachusetts residents of all ages. These services help people who are legally blind live independently as active members of their communities. The MCB contacts all legally blind people in the state to offer support services.

Eye care providers in Massachusetts are required by law to report all cases of legal blindness to the MCB. The MCB keeps a confidential registry of all legally blind people in the state. The Commission issues Certificates of Legal Blindness to people on its register. These certificates allow legally blind residents to get exemptions and deductions on income tax, property tax, and auto excise tax. The Commission also issues an identification card, similar to a driver’s license, for personal identification and proof of legal blindness.

Services: The Massachusetts Commission for the Blind provides the following services:

  • Vocational Rehabilitation (VR), including diagnostic studies, counseling and guidance, individual plans for employment (IPE), restorative and training services, rehabilitation and mobility instruction, assistive technology, adaptive housing, job placement, and post-employment services
  • Assistive technology
  • Independent living social services, including homemaking assistance, assistive devices, mobility instruction, and peer support groups
  • Specialized services for blind seniors (BRIDGE program)
  • Specialized services for blind children, including referrals for early intervention, public benefits, respite care, and socialization and recreation programs
  • Specialized services for blind/deaf individuals and others with multiple disabilities
  • Rehabilitation instruction, including Braille and typing, use of low-vision devices, labeling and record keeping, food preparation, home safety, and self-care techniques
  • Orientation and mobility instruction, including guide dogs
  • MassHealth services for financially eligible people who are legally blind, including long-term care services, hospital services, personal care attendants, private duty nursing, and transportation services
  • Consumer assistance and advocacy for issues related to blindness such as housing and job discrimination, guide dog issues, or transportation problems

Most services are offered free of charge to all registered legally blind Massachusetts residents. Some services have additional eligibility requirements.

Contact Information:
Massachusetts Commission for the Blind
48 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02111
Toll-free Voice: 800-392-6450
Toll-free TDD: 800-392-6556
Fax: 617-626-7685
Web site: Massachusetts Commission for the Blind (MCB)
Vocational Rehabilitation Client Services Manual
Technology for the Blind
Laws and Regulations
Locations of MCB offices

Massachusetts Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (MCDHH)
Description:
The Massachusetts Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (MCDHH) is the state government agency that works on behalf of Massachusetts residents who are deaf or hard-of-hearing. The MCDHH serves as an advocate to make sure that deaf and hard-of-hearing residents have the same access to information, services, education, and other opportunities as the hearing population.

Services: Some of the services that the MCDHH provides are:

  • Communication access, training, and technology services
  • Case management services, including specialized services for children
  • Interpreter and CART translation services
    Note: CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation) service translates spoken words into a visual print display that can be read on a computer monitor or other display device.
  • Independent Living Programs, including peer mentoring, assistive technology, consumer education, self-advocacy, and other independent living skills

Contact Information:
Massachusetts Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (MCDHH)
Executive Office of Health and Human Services
600 Washington Street
Boston, MA 02111
Telephone: 617-740-1600 / TTY: 617-740-1700
Toll-free: Voice: 1-800-882-1155 / TTY: 1-800-530-7570
Fax: 617-740-1880
Web site: Massachusetts Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (MCDHH)
The Savvy Consumer’s Guide to Hearing Loss
MCDHH Resource Directory
Regional Offices of the MCDHH
Interpreter and CART Services
Independent Living Services

Massachusetts Department of Mental Health (DMH)
Description:
The Massachusetts Department of Mental Health is the state agency that oversees treatment programs, support services, regulations, and public policy for Massachusetts residents with mental illness. The DMH supports a community-based system of care.

The Department of Mental Health serves adults with long-term or serious mental illness, and children and adolescents with serious emotional disturbances. For adults, the mental disorder must be persistent and must interfere with the ability to carry out daily life activities. For children, the disorder must limit the child’s ability to function in family, school, or community activities.

Residents must file an application and get DMH approval before they can get services. Applications are available on the DMH web site at DMH Service Application Forms and Appeal Guidelines. Applicants can get short-term services while waiting for DMH approval for continuing care.

Services:
The DMH provides continuing care services to Massachusetts residents who cannot get needed services from other agencies or programs. DMH services include:

  •  continuing care inpatient facilities
  • residential treatment centers
  • in-home treatment
  • outpatient services
  • skills training
  • supported employment
  • case management

Contact Information:
Massachusetts Department of Mental Health (DMH)
Central Office
25 Staniford Street
Boston, MA 02114
Telephone: 617-626-8000
TTY: 617-727-9842
E-mail: DMH Email
Web site: Massachusetts Department of Mental Health
DMH Local Offices: DMH Offices

Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services (DDS)
Description
:
The Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services (DDS) is the state agency that provides support services to Massachusetts residents with intellectual disabilities. The DDS works with many provider agencies throughout the state to offer services to adults and children and their caregivers. Individuals with intellectual disabilities and their families play an active role in making decisions about their lives and in choosing the support services they want and need.

The DDS has an application for services that must be completed before services can be approved. The application is available on the DDS web site: Application for DDS Eligibility

Services: The DDS offers a wide range of support services for adults, including:

  • Service coordination
  • Housing options
  • Employment skills training and transportation to work
  • Non-work related skills training
  • Family support services, including respite care
  • Life skills training and support (food shopping, cooking, etc.)

DDS’s services for children include:

  • Service coordination
  • Family support services, including respite care
  • Partnership program for families of children with significant health care needs
  • Autism support centers
  • After-school and summer camp programs

Contact Information:
Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services
Central Office
500 Harrison Avenue
Boston, MA 02118
Telephone: Voice: 617-727-5608
TTY: 617-624-7783
Fax: 617-624-7577
Web site: Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services (DDS)
Local DDS offices: DDS Area Office Locator

Disability Law Center (DLC)
Description:
The Disability Law Center (DLC) is a private non-profit law firm that gives free legal assistance to Massachusetts residents with disabilities who have been discriminated against because of their disability.

The Disability Law Center helps people with all types of disabilities, including physical, psychiatric, sensory, and cognitive. The DLC provides legal help with problems such as discrimination, abuse or neglect, or denial of services, when they are related to a person’s disability.

Services:
Services include information and referral, technical assistance, legal representation for individuals and groups, and advocacy. The Disability Law Center helps with disability-related legal problems in these areas:

  • Access to community services
  • Special education
  • Health care
  • Disability benefits
  • Rights and conditions in facilities

The DLC does not have the resources to help everyone who has a disability-related legal problem. The DLC sets priorities each year based on the needs of the community. See DLC Priorities. The DLC chooses cases that will have the most impact on the lives of people with disabilities.

Contact Information:
Disability Law Center (DLC)
11 Beacon Street, Suite 925
Boston, MA 02108
Voice telephone: 617-723-8455 / 800-872-9992
TTY: 617-227-9464 / 800-381-0577
Web site: Disability Law Center

DisabilityInfo.org
Description:
The DisabilityInfo.org web site helps people with disabilities, their families, and service providers find disability-related resources in Massachusetts. It has information on a wide variety of programs, agencies, and services for Massachusetts residents with disabilities.

The site is maintained by New England INDEX, a nonprofit technology group. New England INDEX collects information from over 100 members of the Massachusetts Network of Information Providers for People with Disabilities (MNIP) and puts the information on one web site for easy access.

Services:
On the DisabilityInfo.org web site, you can find:

  • disability programs, services, and agencies in Massachusetts
  • disability consultants, including advocates, educators, therapists, counselors, and other specialists
  • physicians and dentists with experience working with people with disabilities
  • local and regional offices for human service agencie
  • local disability agencies that you can call for help
  • fact sheets about many different types of disabilities
  • disability-related laws and regulations
  • disability news
  • information about assistive technology
  • other resources for people with disabilities

Contact Information:
Web site: DisabilityInfo.org
Database search
Get help from a local agency
Fact sheet library
Contact us
New England INDEX
200 Trapelo Road
Waltham, MA 02452-6319
Telephone: 781-642-0248
Toll-free: Voice: 800-642-0249
Toll-free: TTY: 800-764-0200
E-mail: info@DisabilityInfo.org

Mobility Resources For Massachusetts Residents

How do I get a disabled parking placard?
If you are legally blind or cannot walk more than 200 feet without rest or assistance, you can get a disabled parking placard from the Registry of Motor Vehicles. Your doctor or other medical professional must certify your medical condition. You can get a temporary placard or a permanent placard depending on how long your condition will last. The placard is free.

You can get an application for a disabled parking placard at any RMV Branch Office or from the RMV web site: Medical Affairs Forms. You should complete and sign the first page of the application, then have your health care provider complete and sign the second page. Mail or bring the completed application to the RMV.

  • If you mail your application, allow 30 days for the Medical Affairs office to process it. Send your application to:
    Medical Affairs/ RMV
    P.O. Box 55889
    Boston, MA 02205
  • If you bring your application to the office, Medical Affairs will process it the same day. The walk-in address is:
    Medical Affairs/ RMV Office
    25 Newport Ave EXT
    Quincy MA

You are allowed to use the placard only when you are in the vehicle, or when you are being dropped off or picked up. For more information, see Disabled Parking FAQs on the RMV web site.

If you lose your placard, you can apply for a duplicate. For instructions, see Applying for a Duplicate Placard on the RMV web site.

How do I find adaptive driver’s education classes?
If you need specialized driver’s education because of your disability, you can get adaptive driving lessons at one of the schools listed on the Registry of Motor Vehicles web site at Specialized Driver’s Education Programs (at the bottom of the page). Programs are customized to meet your needs, and can be adapted for a wide range of physical, cognitive, and emotional disabilities. Vehicles with hand controls and other specialized equipment are available.

Adaptive driving programs include:

How do I get a health care proxy?
A health care proxy is a simple legal document that allows you to choose someone to make medical decisions for you, if, for any reason, you are unable to make these decisions yourself.

You can find information about health care proxies on our Advance Care Planning page. Please follow this link: How do I get a health care proxy?

How do I make a living will?
A living will is a document in which you describe the type of medical treatment you want if you become terminally ill or permanently unconscious. It allows you to make end-of-life decisions while you are physically and mentally competent to do so.

You can find information about living wills on our Advance Care Planning page. Please follow this link: How do I make a living will?

How do I get a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order?
You have the right to decide if you want medical workers to use CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) to try to save your life if your heart stops or if you stop breathing. This is a decision you should make with your doctor, family members, and other people you trust. If you do not want CPR to be used, you must get a Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) order from your doctor.

You can find information about DNRs on our Advance Care Planning page. Please follow this link: How do I get a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order?

How do I give someone permission to see my medical records?
A federal law known as HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) protects the privacy of your medical information. HIPAA limits the ways doctors, pharmacies, other health care providers, health insurance companies, nursing homes, and Medicaid/Medicare can share your personal health information.

You can find out how to give health care providers permission to share your medical information on our Advance Care Planning page. Please follow this link: How do I give someone permission to see my medical records?

How do I get a power of attorney?
A power of attorney is a legal document in which you give another person (your “agent”) the right to handle financial and legal matters for you.

You can find information about naming a power of attorney on our Advance Care Planning page. Please follow this link:How do I get a power of attorney?

How do I get a Massachusetts ID card?
If you do not have a driver’s license and you are a resident of Massachusetts, you can get a Massachusetts ID card to use as official identification and proof of age. You can get an ID card at any full-service Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) office.

You can find information about Massachusetts ID cards in our “How Do I …? section for seniors. Please follow this link:How do I get a Massachusetts ID card?

How do I get a service animal?
A service animal is a dog or other animal that has been specially trained to provide assistance to a person with a disability. A service animal performs tasks that the person with the disability cannot do independently. For example, service animals can be trained to help people who are blind or deaf, are mobility impaired, have diabetes or seizure disorders, are autistic, or have other physical or mental disabilities.

For a list of organizations that provide service dogs, see:

Eligibility requirements and costs vary from one organization to another. Many organizations provide service animals for free, but ask you to pay your own expenses while attending training sessions. An interview is usually required before you are accepted into a program.

Massachusetts Disability Grants Handicap Funding MA
People with disabilities in Massachusetts can solve their lack of funding for handicap needs, such as a wheelchair van, through disability grants, financing programs, loans, and more. Browse the largest resource for Massachusetts disability grants to help pay for new wheelchair vans or handicap accessible van conversions. AMS Vans will deliver handicap vans to Massachusetts or nationwide.

Disability Grants in Massachusetts
The handicap funding for the disabled listed below may or may not assist in financing a handicap van. Check with the local Massachusetts grant provider for a complete list of requirements.

The Massachusetts Assistive Technology Loan Program: The Massachusetts ATLP provides people with disabilities access to low-interest cash loans to purchase handicap vans and vehicle modifications to accommodate a wheelchair.

How to Apply for Massachusetts Grants or Mobility Funding
Massachusetts residents seeking assistance with the purchase of handicap vans for sale should contact the mobility funding programs listed above about disability grants offered. We are delighted to accept all funding assistance programs to ensure your handicap needs are met. If we missed a grant program you’re familiar with, please let us know and we will add it to our list of mobility funding sources in Massachusetts.

Prepare Your Mobility Equipment For the Colder Weather

Cold temperatures not only slow wheelchair users down, but can also slow down their vans and accessible equipment. For example, if you use a hydraulic wheelchair lift, you may have noticed that the colder the weather, the slower the lift reacts. The cold thickens the fluid, making it move slower through hoses, valves and cylinders.

There’s not much you can do about that, but preparing other equipment for cold weather is important to help avoid accidents and breakdowns.

If you live in the New England area · call our Mobility Center today (508) 697-8324 · We’ll rust proof your wheelchair accessible vehicle, give you an oil change, tune-up, and/or semi-annual ramp/lift service and have any other accessible equipment checked before the temperature dips. If you ask we can also check your battery, antifreeze level, heater, brakes, defroster and thermostat.

Do It Yourself:

  • Purchase winter wiper blades that cut through snow and ice.
  • Keep the gas tank at least half full. It reduces condensation and makes your vehicle easier to start on cold mornings.
  • Buy tires that have MS, M+S, M/S or M&S on them, meaning they meet the Rubber Manufacturers Association guidelines and can bite through mud and snow.
  • For better traction and control, rotate tires so the best ones are in the front.
  • Get an electric engine block heater. It warms the engine so the motor can start. It connects to normal AC power overnight or before driving. In extremely cold climates, electrical outlets are sometimes found in public or private parking lots. 
  • Cold weather is tough on accessible van batteries. Buy one with greater starting power, higher cold cranking amps and reserve capacity for energy when the engine isn’t running.
  • Use synthetic oil to make starting a cold engine easier.

Before you drive:

  • Keep rock salt on hand to melt ice off walkways for a safer wheelchair ride.
  • Clean the snow off the roof and hood so it doesn’t “avalanche” onto the windshield and block your vision.
  • Clear the head and tail lights for best visibility.
  • Scrape the ice off mirrors and windows.

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Here at VMi New England Mobility Center and Automotive Innovations we’ll service and repair your wheelchair accessible vehicle and/or equipment even if you didn’t buy it from us! So bring us your mobility van no matter the year (old or new), chassis (Honda, Dodge, Toyota, Ford, Chrysler, excreta..), or conversion (Side Entry, Rear Entry, VMI, Braun, Ricon, Rampvan, Elorado, Amerivan, excreta..)!!

Rust Proof Your Wheelchair Van Before It’s Too Late

Winter is Coming
De-Icing the roads
Rust Proof Your Wheelchair Van Before the Road Salt Hits the Streets!

We can’t live without salt. It’s a necessary nutrient, it’s used to seed rain clouds, soften household tap water, make chemicals and is used to make ice cream!

In parts of the country with freezing winter temperatures, drivers know that warming the cars up in the morning isn’t the only inconvenience. Icy roads are, too. The same chemical reaction between ice and salt that creates creamy, delicious ice cream also keeps our roads and sidewalks free of dangerous ice during the cold winter months.

A salt and sand mixture is frequently spread over roads before or after a snow or ice storm. Salt lowers water’s freezing point, causing any ice already formed to melt even though the air temperature remains well below freezing. The sand helps keep the salt in place, plus it adds a bit of traction to wet and often slushy roads.

While road salting helps people travel safely, it has drawbacks. It can cause major body and undercarriage damage to your Wheelchair accessible vehicle unless you take extra care and precaution.

If you’re one of the many who must travel the saline streets in the land of the ice and snow, we have some great tips to help protect your mobility vehicle from the ravages of road salt.

Plan Ahead
The best time to prevent salt damage to your conversion van is in Autumn,before the first snowflake falls; a little car maintenance will help keep the rust away.

Prevent
Prevention is better than a cure. There are a number of products that can offer prevention against rust. Products are available either as oils, waxes, fluids and coatings.  The range is vast, but our rust prevention processes, product, plan and application has been found to be most effective. Our rust proofing is ever evolving and has been for over the past 25 years.

  • Our rust proofing formula does more than just cover the metal required, we apply it as a high-pressured spray, ensuring protection to your handicap accessible vehicle’s most critical areas by penetrating, displacing existing moisture and protecting the many vulnerable crevices of your automobile.

As seen in the picture below this van has heavy rust and metal fatigue due to a lack of maintenance.

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Once the rust is this bad there’s not much we can do other than replace the van.
So call us or come in today to rust proof your van before it’s too late.

 

 

September has been designated by Congress as National Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Month

september has been designated by congress as national spinal cord injury awareness month newenglandwheelchairvan.com

September has been designated by Congress as National Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Month. Sponsored by Sen. Mark Rubio of Florida, the resolution notes:

  • the estimated 1,275,000 individuals in the United States who live with a spinal cord injury (SCI) cost society billions of dollars in health-care costs and lost wages;
  • an estimated 100,000 of those individuals are veterans who suffered the spinal cord injury while serving as members of the United States Armed Forces;
  • every 48 minutes a person will become paralyzed, underscoring the urgent need to develop new neuroprotection, pharmacological, and regeneration treatments to reduce, prevent, and reverse paralysis; and
  • increased education and investment in research are key factors in improving outcomes for victims of spinal cord injuries, improving the quality of life of victims, and ultimately curing paralysis.

“Paralyzed Veterans of America is passionate about its commitment to increasing awareness, supporting research to find a cure and advocating for exceptional quality of care for patients with spinal cord injury/disorders

Research into treating or finding a way to reverse paralysis from spinal cord injury is often expensive and hard to come by, involving specialized equipment and staff that many hospitals and research centers cannot afford. Government funding and support, as well as that of the private sector, will be crucial in the search for a treatment for paralysis.

Paralyzed Veterans of America has since its inception supported research in spinal cord science as well as educational initiatives to improve the lives of individuals with spinal cord injury—more than $100 million into research that promises new therapies, treatments and potential cures for paralysis. Top researchers supported by Paralyzed Veterans now confidently speak of a cure.

Abilities Expo Boston September 20-22

Abilities Expo  Boston September 20-22

boston abilities expo event for people with abilities september-20-22 vminnewengland.com

BOSTON, August 24, 2013 /VMiNewswire/ — VMi New England’s community of people with disabilities—which also includes families, caregivers, seniors, wounded veterans and healthcare professionals—welcomes the much-anticipated return of the Abilities Expo Boston on September 20-22, 2013 at The Boston Convention & Exhibition Center. Admission is free.

Abilities Expo Boston will take place in Boston, United States Of America for three consecutive days. In this international trade show latest and advanced disAbility products and services will be given supreme importance. The main purpose of this expo is to make the  people aware of the developmental changes which are taking place in this sector. At the same time this event will provide relevant and useful information to the disabled and senior individuals.
Abilities Expo Boston is a must attend event for the caregivers, healthcare professionals and the eminent experts related to this field. In this event they will get a chance to share their knowledge and experience with each other in this trade show.

Boston Abilities Expo September 20-22 2013

Boston Abilities Expo September 20-22

boston abilities expo event for people with abilities september-20-22 vminnewengland.com

For almost as long as we’ve been servicing and selling wheelchair vans , The Abilities Expo has been improving the lives of Americans with disAbilities, their families, caregivers and healthcare professionals. This unique forum features three days of cutting-edge products and services, compelling workshops, fun-for-the-whole-family activities and has become the leading event for the community of people with disabilities (PWDs).

Abilities Expo reaches out to all ages and all sectors of the Community including wounded veterans, persons recovering from immobilizing accidents, seniors with age-related health concerns, children with disabilities, individuals with mobility and spinal issues, people who have vision and hearing impairments, people with developmental disabilities and many more. Whether your challenges are mild or severe, this is your event.

Exhibitor Profile

Automobiles, van/conversions – Assistive technologies – Bathroom equipment – Beds, furnishings & accessories – Chairs & accessories – Clothing & apparel – Daily living aids – Durable medical equipment – Exercise, recreational, sports equipment & services – Home medical equipment & services – Incontinence products – Insurance & insurance services – Legal services – Publications – Ramps/lifts – Rehabilitative care/services – Residential programs – Seating/positioning systems & accessories – Travel & hospitality services – Wheelchairs, scooters & walkers

Boston Abilities Expo– Event for People with Abilities–Makes Boston Debut September 20-22

Abilities Expo–the Nation’s Leading Event for People with Abilities–Boston September 20-22

boston abilities expo event for people with abilities september-20-22 vminnewengland.com

BOSTON, August 22, 2013 /VMiNewswire/ — VMi New England’s community of people with disabilities—which also includes families, caregivers, seniors, wounded veterans and healthcare professionals—welcomes the much-anticipated return of the Abilities Expo Boston on September 20-22, 2013 at The Boston Convention & Exhibition Center. Admission is free.

Abilities Expo has enjoyed tremendous success in bringing life-enhancing products and services, education, resources and fun to people with disabilities in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Houston, Atlanta and San Jose each year.

The Abilities Expo Boston will feature an impressive line-up of exhibits, celebrities, workshops, events and activities to appeal to people of all ages with the full spectrum of disabilities—including physical, learning, developmental and sensory disabilities.

“We are thrilled for the opportunity to bring Abilities Expo to Boston,” said David Korse, president and CEO of Abilities Expo. “We can’t wait help people explore the possibilities and open their eyes to all the things they can do.”

The Latest Products and Services
Attendees will experience cutting-edge products and services for people with a wide range of disabilities. They will find mobility products, devices for people with developmental disabilities, medical equipment, home accessories, essential services, low-cost daily living aids, products for people with sensory impairments and much more.

Relevant Workshops
A series of compelling workshops which address pressing disability issues will be offered free-of-charge to all attendees. Sessions will focus on travel, emergency preparedness, therapeutic recreation, thriving as a parent of a unique child, home accessibility, finding the correct mobility device and that is just for starters.

Sports, Instruction, Dancing and More!
Abilities Expo does not merely inform, it engages and it entertains. Attendees of all levels of ability will learn the latest hip hop dance moves and play a host of adaptive sports like rowing, power soccer and more. And the kids will love the face painting!

Meet the Animals
Animals have become an intrinsic part of the community of people with disabilities. Some are essential to the healing process, while others help their human partners become more independent. Expo-goers will enjoy assistance dog demos, and learn how service monkeys can help people with special needs.

Celebrity Encounters
Meet Chelsie Hill, co-founder of the dance sensation Team Hotwheelz and one of the dynamic divas of Push Girls, Sundance Channel’s award-winning, boundary-breaking docu-series that traces the lives of four women in Hollywood who happen to be in wheelchairs.

Jennifer French, silver medalist for Sailing at the 2012 Paralympian Games and the 2013 Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year, will conduct a workshop and book signing for her new autobiography, On My Feet Again.

Come to VMi New England’s Mobility Center were every day is a Ability Expo

September is National Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Month

WILL YOU STAND UP FOR THOSE WHO CAN’T?

September is National Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Month

september is national spinal cord injury awareness month newenglandwheelchairvan.com

Every 48 minutes someone in the U.S. is paralyzed from a spinal cord injury.  Millions worldwide are living with paralysis as a result and living with the knowledge that there is currently no cure for their injury.

In an effort to raise awareness about the critical need for better treatments and preventive measures, September has been designated National Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Month by the U.S. Senate, the result of a resolution co-sponsored by Sens. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Bill Nelson (D-FL).  To bolster the resolution’s message, we are launching an awareness campaign lasting the entire month of September.

The goal of the campaign is to ask “Will You Stand Up For Those Who Can’t?”  The intent is to create a national conversation about the devastation of paralysis, and to bring this condition to the forefront of public awareness.

“Paralysis does not discriminate.  People need to realize that paralysis can happen to anyone at any time,” said Nick Buoniconti.  “But the reality of today’s statistics can’t be disputed.  Every 48 minutes another person in the U.S. will become paralyzed. That is simply unacceptable. Each of us must do what we can to make a difference.  I am personally asking you, will you stand up for those who can’t and do one or more of the following?”

We are asking our friends and supporters to:

Make a donation in honor of a loved one, caregiver, scientist or organization who is working to improve the life of those injured.  If you would like to host a small fundraising party at your house, please email bfinfo@med.miami.edu and we will send you more information.

“The inspiring work of The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis has touched the lives of millions of young athletes, accident victims and troops in harm’s way and I commend them for it,” said Sen. Rubio. “By designating September as National Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Month, I hope we can further educate the public about how crippling accidents can be prevented while promoting the important work being done to help victims walk again.”

Trade In a Vehicle Towards a Wheelchair Van

boston trade in a vehicle towards a wheelchair van newenglandwheelchairvan.com/

cash paid for your wheelchair van

VMi New England Mobility Center accepts trade-in vehicles toward the purchase of an wheelchair accessible van. Get a trade-in quote with some of the best rates in the mobility industry. Update your current  wheelchair van, or trade in a car, truck, minivan, full-size van, sports car, or accessible vehicle towards a new or used handicap accessible ramp van. We use a variety of modern up to date appraisal tools, including Kelley Blue Book, NADA, and the Manheim Market Report. We will assess your vehicle’s trade-in value and provide you with a great offer towards the purchase of new wheelchair van or a used handicap van with new or used conversion.

Trade In Vehicle Requirements

We will accept virtually all non-modified vehicles that are preferably under 10 years old with odometers at 100,000 miles or less. You can also trade in a converted mobility vehicle from Braun, VMI, Rollx, and, even a AMS converted handicap vans.

Submit Your Vehicle’s Information
The first step is to call or email us about your trade. The basic information you provide helps our mobility consultants create the best trade-in deal possible for you. Be sure you include the correct VIN and mileage, and submit photos of your vehicle.

Trade-in Inspection
A mobility consultant will typically give a trade-in quote as soon as your vehicle is brought in for inspection. After a price is agreed upon, we will write you a check. For nationwide customers, we will pick up your trade-in at the time that we deliver your new or used handicap van.

All trade-in offers are based on a first hand inspection, and if a vehicle isn’t represented accurately, we reserve the right to withdraw the offer once the vehicle is personally inspected by our evaluator.

 

United Spinal Establishes Advisory Committee of Spinal Cord Injury Experts

united-spinal-establishes-advisory-committee-of-spinal-cord-injury-experts newenglandwheelchairvan.com

United Spinal Association has appointed a new Medical and Scientific Advisory Committee (MSAC) to offer guidance and expertise in assisting people living with spinal cord injuries and disorders (SCI/D) locate the very best resources to maximize their quality of life.

The MSAC is comprised of representatives of the multidisciplinary SCI/D health care community including clinicians, scientists, researchers and other professionals.

Committee chairman, Dr. Christine Sang, states, “Our mission is to maximize the quality of life of all people living with SCI/D. We envision a world in which all people living with SCI/D have access to every opportunity that improves health and quality of life.”

The committee will work directly with United Spinal’s membership division, NSCIA and its national resource center.

The goal of the MSAC is threefold:
• Provide information and guidance in medical/other health care-related topics
• Identify and address health care policy issues that impact the SCI/D community
• Inform the SCI/D community of the latest advancements in research relevant to their health and independence

“The MSAC is reflective of United Spinal’s ongoing commitment to actively supporting the highest possible quality of life for persons living with SCI/D,” said Pat Maher, MSAC and United Spinal board member, speaking on behalf of all members of the advisory committee.

“Whether you’re managing a newly acquired injury or diagnosis, or addressing the challenges around aging and SCI, the MSAC is committed to supporting our members and the entire SCI/D community to remain informed on critical health care matters,” he added.

“In the wake of any devastating diagnosis, people and their family members need to know that the information they’re receiving is accurate. We are incredibly fortunate to have the MSAC as a resource for the SCI/D community,” said Paul J. Tobin, president and CEO of United Spinal Association.

United Spinal’s NSCIA national resource center, Spinal Cord Central, provides information and resources to meet the needs of over one million individuals with SCI/D and:

• Their families and friends
• The medical and scientific community
• Service and business professionals
• The media; students; government; elected officials; and the public.

United Spinal and The Buoniconti Fund Team Up to Improve Peer Support for People Living With SCI/D

United Spinal Association and The Buoniconti Fund today announced their plans to create a coordinated national network of peer support groups called the “Spinal Network” that will set higher standards in assisting people living with spinal cord injuries and disorders (SCI/D).

The goal of the Spinal Network is to ensure more peer support groups in cities and towns across the United States are connected to the very best resources to help people with SCI/D maintain independent and active lifestyles.

united-spinal-and-the-buoniconti-fund-team-up-to-improve-peer-support-for-people-living-with-scid

“There are a variety of SCI/D support groups out there, both new and old. Unfortunately, there is very little coordination between them and their standards can be drastically different,” said Paul J. Tobin, president and CEO of United Spinal Association.

“In many cases, a person with SCI/D who has had great peer support may move to a new community with minimal support. Even worse, someone may leave a rehab facility with no support whatsoever and no clear picture of how to overcome new challenges,” added Tobin.

To date, over thirty support groups in 20 states have received funding through grants from The Spinal Network for their commitment to improve the lives of people with SCI/D.

“We believe there is a strong need for greater support for individuals and families that are affected by spinal cord injuries and disorders. The Spinal Network will help bridge that gap between people living with SCI/D and their community so they are able to not only return home, but gain a new understanding and outlook on life,” said Marc A. Buoniconti, president of The Buoniconti Fund and one of the founding members of the Spinal Network.

The Spinal Network will address this issue by establishing a strong national peer-to-peer support base, backed by United Spinal’s membership division, National Spinal Cord Injury Association (NSCIA), and its 70-plus national chapters and extensive resource center.  Guidance will be provided on all facets of living with SCI/D, including employment, affordable housing, transportation, health care, home- and community-based independent living, education, peer support, and leisure and recreation.

Extensive tools and training will also be provided to leaders of each peer support group that joins the Spinal Network to help group participants adjust to SCI/D––from tips to improving social interactions and overcoming day-to-day challenges, to developing new self-management skills.

The Spinal Network is established through a partnership between The Buoniconti Fund; United Spinal Association and its membership program NSCIA; and tremendous support from Founding Corporate Sponsor Hollister, Inc.––a world leader in urological products.

The Spinal Network will offer grant opportunities, which are available to all support groups in the SCI/D community in the United States. Grants will be awarded bi-annually to groups who meet specific criteria.

Additional micro-grants will be awarded bi-annually based upon available funding and will encourage program innovation and outreach efforts to people newly affected by SCI/D.  Finally, the Spinal Network will work to ensure that peers can find out what they need and when they need it, as they move from one area to another.  As every person with SCI/D learns in rehab, one of the most reliable sources of information about living with SCI/D is another person who has been there.  The Spinal Network will help make those connections.

To learn more about the Spinal Network peer mentoring program, go online to: www.spinalnetwork.org or contact the NSCIA’s Resource Center at: peers@spinalcord.org or by phone:  800-962-9629.

cinemAbility disAbility, film, and changing society

If art is a reflection of life, than we should look to film to examine the progress we’ve made and the lessons we’ve learned about inclusion.

CinemAbility   Disability, Film, and Changing Society newenglandwheelchairvan.com

 

That’s exactly what a new documentary titled CinemAbility, which premiered in Los Angeles last week, seeks to do. The film, sponsored by BraunAbility and produced and directed by Jenni Gold, a longtime friend and customer, takes a detailed look at the evolution of disability in entertainment. As a wheelchair user who lives with muscular dystrophy, she was the perfect catalyst to set the project in motion.

She brought a few well-known friends along for help, including celebrities like Jamie Foxx, William H. Macy, Ben Affleck and Beau Bridges. All shared their experiences with disability in film or television and any pre-conceived notions they had about playing such a character.

Unbeknownst to each, the actors and actresses were asked the same question: What is the first portrayal of a disability that you remember in entertainment? Answers ranged from a blind Audrey Hepburn in Wait Until Dark to Daniel Day-Lewis in My Left Foot to Tom Cruise in Born on the 4th of July.

CinemAbility   Disability, Film, and Changing Society newenglandwheelchairvan.com

The common theme among each interview: we need more. We’ve come a long way from the days of black and white Charlie Chaplin films when people with physical disabilities were portrayed as carnival freak show entertainment. Hollywood doesn’t always get it right, however, and many of the industry’s notable actors, actresses and directors are intentionally seeking to change that.

CinemAbility premiered Friday, July 26th, which was, appropriately, the 23rd anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act. For a list of cities that will show the film on its national tour, visit www.cinemability.com or follow CinemAbility on Facebook.

 

Able Flight Brings Wheelchair user to the Sky

able flight brings wheelchair user to the sky boston newenglandwheelchairvan.com

Humanity has always seen flight as one of the most sublime images of freedom in motion. It seems almost unfair that our feathered friends get to move about so quickly to wherever they may please. It seems to be nothing short of magical. Piloting an aircraft was a pipedream for wheelchair users for many a year; that is, until 2006.

Charles Stites founded the non-profit group, Able Flight, for the sole purpose of giving those accustomed to wheels a new pair of wings. Able Flight works to give scholarships to people who have physical disabilities for the purpose of obtaining a Sport Pilot license. Some of the group’s funding goes to purchasing special modified aircraft for people with differing needs to have a plane to fly.

Nothing says it better than the mission statement used by foundation: Able Flight’s mission is to offer people with disabilities a unique way to challenge themselves through flight training, and by doing so, to gain greater self-confidence and self-reliance.

The program received a special boon in 2010 when a partnership with the premiere Purdue University Department of Aviation Technology took place. Able Flight offers a range of scholarships for students to go learn from the world-class flight instructors at Purdue.

Most flight instruction takes place during the months of May and June, for a total of 5 to 6 weeks. This time covers ground-based classwork and in-flight training, all leading up to the check ride tests. Most flight training is now conducted with Able Flight’s joint training program at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana. Career training can take place at a number of locations.

The scholarship types range from a full-ride scholarship for those looking to obtain a Sport Pilot license, to those seeking training for a career working on and with Light Sport Aircraft in either maintenance or dispatching. Another scholarship is made available for those who had a pilot’s license and are seeking to get back in the air after an injury.

To see pictures of students in training, and in flight, click here.

The requirements are basic as well. Applicants must be a U.S. citizen seventeen years or older with a disability. Recipients have had disabilities ranging from lost limbs and SCI to congenital birth disorders.

Leonardo Da Vinci captured a strong sentiment for those who admire the sky, Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.

Thanks to Purdue University and Able Flight, being in a wheelchair doesn’t mean just looking into the sky any longer.

The Ralph Braun Foundation enters new Grant Cycle

The Ralph Braun Foundation will be opening a new funding cycle on August 1, 2013.  The two month time period will be operated similarly to the past cycles with the application process closing on September 30th. The grants are awarded to those who have most of their funding secured and just need a little additional help to meet their goal.

The Ralph Braun Foundation has been awarding grants for three years with 12-15 grants being awarded annually.

Ralph Braun

The  entire application process must be completed online. The application must be filled out completely and all attachments sent electronically with the application. We will be funding mobility transportation equipment such as new or used accessible vehicles, wheelchair lifts, car-top wheelchair carriers, scooter lifts, access seats, etc. Eligible products may be funded at 25% of the cost with a grant cap of $5000.

All applicants must be working with a NMEDA (National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association) certified mobility dealer to determine and quote the proper product to meet their needs.

The grant applications will be reviewed after the process closes on September 30, 2013, and grant award letters will be sent on October 15, 2013.  All purchases must be completed and checks sent to dealers by December 15, 2013.  Please read all application rules and fill out applications completely and submit your completed application along with all requested attachments together. We are looking forward to receiving many good applications again this cycle and assisting several people with their purchases.

The Ralph Braun Foundation was created in honor of what Ralph stood for, ability for all. The Ralph Braun Foundation exists as an entity outside of BraunAbility. Funds from the grant can be used towards any mobility need from any manufacturer.

Copies of Ralph’s autobiography, “Rise Above” can be purchased from the foundation. The foundation graciously accepts donations on their site as well.

The application can be found here.

are you looking to trade or sell your wheelchair van?

Used Conversion Vans and

Non-Adaptive Autos Can be Used Toward a Down Payment

are-you-looking-to-trade-or-sell-your-wheelchair-van newenglandwheelchairvan.com

We often get phone calls or e-mails asking if we take trade-ins — or if we’re interested in purchasing a used accessible van. In some cases, the trade-in vehicle is a non-adaptive regular automobile, van, SUV  or truck. The answer in all cases is yes. For trade-ins, we can give you a fair market value for your adaptive and non-adaptive vehicle. The trade-in vehicle can be used toward a down payment on any new or used wheelchair van for sale. We do all the paperwork on your trade-in as part of the financing process. All you need is the title.

If you’re looking to trade in your current wheelchair van or looking to sell one that is no longer being used, contact us online here. We can often have a representative in your area respond within 24 hours. Live on-site inspections and a test drive by one of our technicians may be required before a final assessment and offer can be made.

What If I don’t Live Near One of Your Locations?

If you live outside of our service area and have a converted van for sale, we have national buying specialists who handles all of our out-of-area used vehicle purchases.

vmi to deliver honda odyssey with northstar to local heroes contest winner, steve herbst

vmi-to-deliver-honda-odyssey-with-northstar-to-local-heroes-contest-winner-steve-herbst newenglandwheelchairvan.com

PHOENIX, Ariz. – August 6, 2013 – Vantage Mobility International (VMI), a leader in the manufacturing and distribution of wheelchair accessible, full-size and minivan conversions, will deliver a 2013 Honda Odyssey Touring Edition with VMI Northstar conversion on August 7, 2013, at MobilityWorks in Villa Park, Ill., to Steve Herbst, a winner of the 2013 Local Heroes Contest.

The Local Heroes Contest, which provides an opportunity for people with disabilities to win a wheelchair accessible vehicle, attracted over two million people who submitted and voted for their Local Hero. The contest is a part of National Mobility Awareness Month and championed by the National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association (NMEDA).  Herbst, a Palatine, Ill., resident was identified as one of three winners in May.

“Being a part of the Local Heroes Contest is a special way for VMI to help raise awareness of the amazing people in our communities who live with disabilities,” said Monique McGivney, director of corporate communication at VMI. “It also gives us the opportunity to help deserving families, like the Herbsts, enjoy greater independence with a wheelchair accessible van that meets their specific needs.  I’m confident the 2013 Honda Odyssey Touring Edition with VMI Northstar conversion, which has been customized specifically for Steve, will make a positive difference in his life.”

The black 2013 Honda Odyssey Touring Edition with VMI Northstar conversion includes the following standard features:

  • Maximum interior space for wheelchair maneuverability
  • SURE DEPLOY backup system allows users to stow or deploy the mobility ramp van conversion even in the event of complete power failure
  • Wider, usable accessible ramp surface with an ultra-low, 8.0 degree accessible ramp angle with 800lb. wheelchair ramp capacity
  • Easily accessible interior buttons, handles and switches
  • Obstruction-free doorway allows easy entry/exit for able-bodied passengers

“The Local Heroes Contest couldn’t have come at a better time,” said Herbst.  “I lost the ability to drive my previous vehicle shortly before we heard about the contest. Throughout the contest we had tremendous support from friends, family and co-workers.  We received almost 38,000 votes, which is very humbling to think about.  We’re especially grateful to VMI for being a part of this contest and providing us with their Honda Odyssey with their in-floor ramp, which was customized with the hand controls that will allow me to drive again.   VMI’s generosity will help me regain my independence and stay involved in the community, which are very important to me and my family.”

enhancing the client experience wheelchair vans in new england

enhancing-the-client-experience-wheelchair-vans-in-new-england newenglandwheelchairvan.com

VMi New England Mobility Center is always looking for ways to make the client experience more enjoyable – whether it’s coming in for service, purchasing a van or stopping buy to see which van fit the best. Below are some of things we’ve been working on to keep our clients satisfied and coming back. Getting your stamp of approval to recommend us to family and friends is a key ingredient to our success. We hope that your experience with us is always a good one.

Online

Our new website makes it easier for people to find a mobility solution that fits their needs and budget. We’ve added dozens of detailed pages on a variety of adaptive equipment options, such as scooter lifts and hand controls. We’ve recently updated our online van showroom to help visitors find the perfect handicap vans for there needs. We also have a large number of Face Book fans who follow our weekly blogs and postings. “Like Us” and see why more people are visiting every day already have!

In the Showroom

VMi New England Mobility Center has built one of the best showrooms and reception areas in the north east this past year to make our visitors feel more at home. Others are in process or being planned for. Large flatscreen televisions have been put in place.

Fresh brewed coffee is always available for our morning arrivals and comfortable seating areas let people relax while reading a book or magazine. Wireless connectivity allow for working on a laptop or wireless device. When you come to our facility, you will meet friendly people who want to help. Our clients are like family.

Consulting

We’ve added more certified mobility consultants too our staff and continue to train others who want to work in this very fulfilling industry. Consultations to discuss and demonstrate all of our mobility products are always free of charge. For those clients who want to drive with the use of mobility equipment or driving aids, we can bring in a Certified Driver Rehabilitation Specialist (CDRS) to talk about evaluations and training – or put you in contact with one nearby. Selecting the right vehicle and other optional mobility equipment, such as a turning seat, is key to be happy customer.

“Getting good advice from a consultant early in the process is critical to making the right decision. We pride ourselves on customer satisfaction – and that’s where the most important part of being happy with us and the vehicle begins.” Jim Sanders

Wheelchair Vans & Lift Options

We have one of the largest network of mobility manufacturing partners in the industry. We represent nearly every major brand of wheelchair van conversions, specialty seating, securement, scooter lifts and wheelchair lifts available. Our goal is to inform you of every choice available and to consult on which ones meet your physical needs and chair or scooter requirements. We want to enhance your life with a solution that you’re going to be comfortable with for many years to come. Solutions that make it easier for you and your family to enjoy an active life. Additionally the company is run by one of the most experienced people in the country at building High-Tech driving equipment and vans for passengers and individuals who drive from a wheelchair. He offers unmatched practical and theoretical foundation in the application of vehicle modifications for individuals with disabilities. With over 27 years experience, he continues to spearhead new and exciting technological advancements in this growing and emerging market.

In the Community

Our local staff at the VMi New England mobility center is active in various organizations and events around the country. Every week, there is an event going on where we want to participate: Fund raisers; tradeshows; bike rides, motorcycle runs; walks; expos; in-service training; socials; and many other community events. Our blog is full of stories sharing event information and photos of clients and friends. If we can’t participate, we’ll help in other ways, like posting information on our sites including our Linkedin, Face Book page and Twitter pages. If you would like us to come and speak or participate at an event near you, please let us know.

Service

We have put into place new scheduling procedures that allow for the Service Managers to get our clients in and out as quickly as possible. This allows for having the right service bays, parts and technicians ready to work on your vehicle (or lift) at the scheduled date and time you are to arrive. We’ve increased our training requirements and manufacturer communications to make sure the work is done properly with the latest instructions and components. If your van is under its original adaptive equipment warranty, or registered in our extended warranty program, we’ll identify and apply the appropriate coverage so that all costs are minimized.

Client Satisfaction

We utilize an independent survey that follows up with each of our clients – applying satisfaction scores to numerous categories. These surveys are then reviewed by our senior management and store General Managers on a weekly basis. Whether you came in for service, purchased new or used wheelchair vans, or had new hand controls installed, we take your feedback seriously and immediately correct any issues that need attention. We are proud to say our satisfaction scores are very high compared to most industry studies. We will continue working hard to keep your business.

where to buy wheelchair van in boston

where-to-buy-wheelchair-van-in-boston newenglandwheelchairvan.com

Wheelchair Conversion Vans from VMi New England and Automotive Innovations

The Honda Odyssey is known for its reliability and comfort, and it’s one of the most popular minivans on the market today. Because of this, VMI has taken the Odyssey and added its VMI Northstar conversion to create one of the most exciting new lowered floor minivans around. This wheelchair conversion van comes with lots of extra touches for your convenience and comfort, and it drives smoothly. Come test drive the converted Honda Odyssey at our Bridgewater, MA Mobility Center today!

We are your New England source for secondhand handicap accessible vans of all sorts. We offer both used VMI Northstars and Summits as well as many secondhand full size accessible vans. Every used handicap vehicle that we offer comes with the safety essentials like wheelchair tie downs, and you can also upgrade any of our vehicles with optional equipment such as an EZ Lock or handicap vehicle controls.

Celebrating 23 Years of the ADA A Message from the Acting Assistant Attorney General

celebrating-23-years-of-the-ada-a-message-from-the-acting-assistant-attorney-general newenglandwheelchairvan.com

Celebrating 23 Years of the ADA:
A Message from the Acting Assistant Attorney General

Twenty-three years ago this week, our nation committed to a comprehensive mandate to eliminate discrimination against people with disabilities by enacting the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The Civil Rights Division is proud to play a critical role in enforcing the ADA, working towards a future in which all the doors are open to equality of opportunity, full participation, independent living, integration and economic self-sufficiency for persons with disabilities. In honor of the 23rd anniversary of the ADA, each day this week we have celebrated Department of Justice enforcement efforts that have opened gateways to full participation and opportunity for people with disabilities. Visit our ADA Anniversary Week webpage to learn more: http://www.ada.gov/ada-23-anni.htm.

In April 2013, the Civil Rights Division issued a report detailing recent accomplishments in enforcing federal laws that prohibit discrimination and uphold the civil and constitutional rights of all who live in America. As described in the Report, the Division achieved results for people with disabilities in over 1,600 actions under the ADA, including lawsuits, settlement agreements, and successful mediations from 2009-2012. The Report also describes the Division’s extensive ADA technical assistance and outreach program. In the past four years, Division staff helped more than 200,000 people who called our ADA Information Line to learn how the ADA applies to them. In Fiscal Year 2012, the Division answered more than 60,000 calls. Click here for links to the Accomplishments Report pages detailing disability rights enforcement efforts http://www.ada.gov/disability-rights-accomplishments.htm (html) andhttp://www.ada.gov/disability-rights-accomplishments.pdf (pdf).

Equal opportunity for those with disabilities is a vision that the Division hopes will soon extend beyond our nation’s borders. There are over 50 million Americans with disabilities, including 5.5 million veterans living abroad who frequently face barriers when they travel, conduct business, study, live or retire overseas. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities improves protections for persons with disabilities overseas, and allows the full range of U.S. accessibility rights and benefits to spread throughout the world. The Division continues to play an active role in the quest for U.S. ratification of the Convention to ensure additional gateways open for people with disabilities across the globe.

Here at home, we have come a long way in the journey for equal justice under the law for people with disabilities. We are frequently reminded, however, that — in the words of the late Senator Edward Kennedy — “the business of civil rights remains the unfinished business of America.” The Civil Rights Division plays a critical role in helping the nation realize the promise of its founding principles. Over the past 23 years, the Division has continued our nation’s journey toward equal justice. But we have more work to do. Today, on the 23rd anniversary of the ADA, I am happy to reaffirm the Division’s commitment to the promise of equal opportunity for people with disabilities in the months and years to come.

Jocelyn Samuels


ADA Home Page

Wheelchair Van Service Considerations Maine

Wheelchair Van Service Considerations in ME

maine wheelchair-van-service-considerations newenglandwheelchairvan.com

At VMi New England Mobility Center, we believe that the service you receive in Maine after you purchase a wheelchair van is just as important as the service you received during your purchasing process. Our main goal is to keep you and the other passengers in the vehicle as safe as possible, which is why our wheelchair van service offerings are unlike any others in the vehicle modification industry.

Trained Service Technicians

All VMi New England Mobility Center Technicians are certified in the mobility equipment that is sold, installed, and serviced.  We are held to the highest standards in the adaptive vehicle industry.

Some of Longest Warranties in the Vehicle Modification Industry

We want to protect our customers and make sure that we offer the best options for them.

Operational Maintenance Program

For more than 27 years we have implemented and evolved a multi-faceted operational maintenance schedule unavailable at any other facility in the country to assist you in maintaining optimum driving performance while also assessing critical component deterioration before it occurs. Our Service Technicians will provide you with list of all work performed on your wheelchair accessible vehicle and a list of any items that may require future attention. Also, we will inform you of any upcoming maintenance and service you may need done to your wheelchair accessible vehicle in order to make sure your adaptive vehicle is in top condition.

Other dealers want your old vans to rust and fall apart so they can sell you a new one.

Wheelchair van rust not at newenglandwheelchairvan.com if you bring it to us for service
a local mobility dealers idea of taking care of your wheelchair van

Operational Maintenance of Adaptive Mobility Equipment on:

  • Lowered Floor Wheelchair Van (New & Used)
  • Full-Size Wheelchair Vans (New & Used)
  • Primary and Secondary Driving Controls
  • Wheelchair Lifts and Scooter Lifts
  • Wheelchair Securement Systems (automatic and manual)
  • Power Seat Bases
  • Power Door Operators

Special service work or repairs to your Adaptive Equipment

Installation of new Adaptive Equipment on new and used wheelchair vans such as:

  • Hand Controls
  • Wheelchair Lifts and Scooter Lifts
  • Raised Doors
  • Lowered Floors
  • Specialized gas, brake, and steering systems
  • Turning Automotive Seats

Vermont Commercial Wheelchair Vans

According to the 2005 American Community Study by the Center for Personal Assistance Services, approximately 95,000 individuals living in Vermont are considered to be disabled in some manner. Specifically, about 2.4% of the population of Vermont have difficulty with every day tasks such as taking a bath, getting dressed, moving about the house, and driving.

vermont-disability vermont-commercial-wheelchair-vans newenglandwheelchairvan.com

At the VMi New England Mobility Center, we offer specialized transportation products and services for private and commercial use. For more than 25 years we have been servicing the commercial and personal wheelchair vehicle needs of the state of Vermont including the Burlington area and Chittenden, Franklin and Grand Isle counties.

If your business needs a new or used accessible van, bus, shuttle or other commercial vehicle in Vermont, look through our online inventory to find the vehicle that’s right for you. View our commercial accessible vehicles, used vans and buses, modifications and accessories or visit our commercial wheelchair van and bus inventory.

We can help you evaluate how many passengers you need to carry, Vermont state regulatory requirements and other commercial considerations when buying a wheelchair van, replacement parts or accessories.

After VMi New England Mobility Center helps you locate the perfect commercial wheelchair van, bus, shuttle, or ambulette, we deliver! We can deliver it right to your door. We will drive, tow or trailer your wheelchair accessible vehicle to Vermont, to your business. We often make deliveries to Burlington, South Burlington, as well as Franklin, Grand Isle and Chittenden counties, so contact us today for your commercial mobility needs, so contact us today.

Learn more about delivery information for Vermont wheelchair vans and parts and our commercial warranty.

We look forward to helping your business provide exceptional service to your wheelchair users, school students, group homes, and rehab centers in the great state of Vermont.

Accessible Parking Spaces ADA Design Guide

ADA Design Guide 1 – Restriping Parking Lots

accessible-parking-spaces-ada-design-guide newenglandwheelchairvan.com

Accessible Parking Spaces

When a business, State or local government agency, or other covered entity restripes a parking lot, it must provide accessible parking spaces as required by the ADA Standards for Accessible Design. Failure to do so would violate the ADA.

In addition, businesses or privately owned facilities that provide goods or services to the public have a continuing ADA obligation to remove barriers to access in existing parking lots when it is readily achievable to do so. Because restriping is relatively inexpensive, it is readily achievable in most cases.

This ADA Design Guide provides key information about how to create accessible car and van spaces and how many spaces to provide when parking lots are restriped.

(illustration showing a woman getting out of the driver’s side of a car into a manual wheelchair)

 

Accessible Parking Spaces for Cars

Accessible parking spaces for cars have at least a 60-inch-wide access aisle located adjacent to the designated parking space. The access aisle is just wide enough to permit a person using a wheelchair to enter or exit the car. These parking spaces are identified with a sign and located on level ground.

 

Van-Accessible Parking Spaces

Van-accessible parking spaces are the same as accessible parking spaces for cars except for three features needed for vans:

a wider access aisle (96″) to accommodate a wheelchair lift;

vertical clearance to accommodate van height at the van parking space, the adjacent access aisle, and on the vehicular route to and from the van-accessible space, and

an additional sign that identifies the parking spaces as “van accessible.”

One of eight accessible parking spaces, but always at least one, must be van-accessible.

 

(illustration showing a van with a side-mounted wheelchair lift lowered onto a marked access aisle at a van-accessible parking space. A person using a wheelchair is getting out of the van. A dashed line shows the route from the lift to the sidewalk.)

Features of Accessible Parking Spaces for Cars

(plan drawing showing an accessible parking space for cars with a 96 inch wide designated parking space, a 60 inch wide min. marked access aisle and the following notes)

Sign with the international symbol of accessibility mounted high enough so it can be seen while a vehicle is parked in the space.

If the accessible route is located in front of the space, install wheelstops to keep vehicles from reducing width below 36 inches.

Access aisle of at least 60-inch width must be level (1:50 maximum slope in all directions), be the same length as the adjacent parking space(s) it serves and must connect to an accessible route to the building. Ramps must not extend into the access aisle.

Boundary of the access aisle must be marked. The end may be a squared or curved shape.

Two parking spaces may share an access aisle.

 

Three Additional Features for Van-Accessible Parking Spaces

(plan drawing showing a van-accessible parking space with a 96 inch wide designated parking space, a 96 inch wide min. marked access aisle and the following notes)

Sign with “van accessible” and the international symbol of accessibility mounted high enough so the sign can be seen when a vehicle is parked in the space

96″ min. width access aisle, level (max. slope 1:50 in all directions), located beside the van parking space

Min. 98-inch-high clearance at van parking space, access aisle, and on vehicular route to and from van space

Minimum Number of Accessible Parking Spaces

(text of following table)

Table showing the minimum number of accessible parking spaces. Text following contains contents of the table.

Total Parking decorative blank spaceTotal Minimum decorative blank spaceVan Accessible decorative blank spaceAccessible Parking

Spaces Provided decorative blank spaceNumber of Accessibledecorative blank space Parking Spacesdecorative blank space Spaces with

(per lot) decorative blank spaceParking Spaces decorative blank spacewith min. 96″ min. decorative blank space60″ wide

decorative blank space(60″ & 96″ aisles)decorative blank spacewide access decorative blank spaceaisle access aisle

 

1 to 25 1 1 0

26 to 50 2 1 1

51 to 75 3 1 2

76 to 100 4 1 3

101 to 150 5 1 4

151 to 200 6 1 5

201 to 300 7 1 6

301 to 400 8 1 7

401 to 500 9 2 7

501 to 1000 2% of total

parking provided 1/8 of Column A* 7/8 of Column A**

in each lot

1001 and over 20 plus 1 for

each 100 1/8 of Column A* 7/8 of Column A**

over 1000

one out of every 8 accessible spaces ** 7 out of every 8 accessible parking spaces

 

Location

Accessible parking spaces must be located on the shortest accessible route of travel to an accessible facility entrance. Where buildings have multiple accessible entrances with adjacent parking, the accessible parking spaces must be dispersed and located closest to the accessible entrances.

When accessible parking spaces are added in an existing parking lot, locate the spaces on the most level ground close to the accessible entrance. An accessible route must always be provided from the accessible parking to the accessible entrance. An accessible route never has curbs or stairs, must be at least 3- feet wide, and has a firm, stable, slip-resistant surface. The slope along the accessible route should not be greater than 1:12 in the direction of travel.

Accessible parking spaces may be clustered in one or more lots if equivalent or greater accessibility is provided in terms of distance from the accessible entrance, parking fees, and convenience. Van-accessible parking spaces located in parking garages may be clustered on one floor (to accommodate the 98-inch minimum vertical height requirement).

 

Free Technical Assistance

Answers to technical and general questions about restriping parking lots or other ADA requirements are available by telephone on weekdays. You may also order the ADA Standards for Accessible Design and other ADA publications, including regulations for private businesses or State and local governments, at any time day or night. Information about ADA-related IRS tax credits and deductions is also available from the ADA Information Line.

Department of Justice

ADA Information Line

800-514-0301 (voice)

800-514-0383 (tty)

 

Internet

You may also review or download information on the Department’s ADA Internet site at any time. The site provides access to ADA regulations, technical assistance materials, and general ADA information. It also provides links to other Federal agencies, and updates on new ADA requirements and enforcement efforts. Internet address:

www.usdoj.gov/crt/ada/index.html

 

Reference:

ADA Standards for Accessible Design (28 CFR Part 36):

§ 4.1.6 Alterations;

§ 4.1.2 Accessible Sites and Exterior Facilities: New Construction, and

§ 4.1.6 Parking and Passenger Loading Zones.

Wheelchair Van Service Considerations New Hampshire

Wheelchair Van Service Considerations in NH

New Hampshire  wheelchair-van-service-considerations newenglandwheelchairvan.com

At VMi New England Mobility Center, we believe that the service you receive in New Hampshire after you purchase a wheelchair van is just as important as the service you received during your purchasing process. Our main goal is to keep you and the other passengers in the vehicle as safe as possible, which is why our wheelchair van service offerings are unlike any others in the vehicle modification industry.

Trained Service Technicians

All VMi New England Mobility Center Technicians are certified in the mobility equipment that is sold, installed, and serviced.  We are held to the highest standards in the adaptive vehicle industry.

Some of Longest Warranties in the Vehicle Modification Industry

We want to protect our customers and make sure that we offer the best options for them.

Operational Maintenance Program

For more than 27 years we have implemented and evolved a multi-faceted operational maintenance schedule unavailable at any other facility in the country to assist you in maintaining optimum driving performance while also assessing critical component deterioration before it occurs. Our Service Technicians will provide you with list of all work performed on your wheelchair accessible vehicle and a list of any items that may require future attention. Also, we will inform you of any upcoming maintenance and service you may need done to your wheelchair accessible vehicle in order to make sure your adaptive vehicle is in top condition.

Other dealers want your old vans to rust and fall apart so they can sell you a new one.

Wheelchair van rust not at newenglandwheelchairvan.com if you bring it to us for service
a local mobility dealers idea of taking care of your wheelchair van

Operational Maintenance of Adaptive Mobility Equipment on:

  • Lowered Floor Wheelchair Van (New & Used)
  • Full-Size Wheelchair Vans (New & Used)
  • Primary and Secondary Driving Controls
  • Wheelchair Lifts and Scooter Lifts
  • Wheelchair Securement Systems (automatic and manual)
  • Power Seat Bases
  • Power Door Operators

Special service work or repairs to your Adaptive Equipment

Installation of new Adaptive Equipment on new and used wheelchair vans such as:

  • Hand Controls
  • Wheelchair Lifts and Scooter Lifts
  • Raised Doors
  • Lowered Floors
  • Specialized gas, brake, and steering systems
  • Turning Automotive Seats

ADA’s Impact on Everyday Lives

ADA’s Impact on Everyday Lives

ada-impact-on-everyday-lives newenglandwheelchairvan.com

Overview

Since its passage in 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is slowly but surely changing the landscape and the lives of individuals with disabilities and their families every single day. Instead of repeatedly having to argue for their right to equal access and equal opportunity to participate in the programs, goods and services available to individuals without disabilities, children and adults with disabilities are discovering that—while the landscape is still not fully barrier free—they can usually go about their business without encountering barriers or interruption.

The articles below illustrate the ways in which the ADA impacts the lives of community members, employees, college students and families living the Southeast Region of the United States. These stories—and others—are repeated every day in communities, businesses and on campuses throughout the United States.

Index of Contents

Accessible Cities: People with Disabilities Survey Public Facilities

Over a three year period, small teams of people, with and without disabilities, visited city halls, libraries, civic centers, and parks in 14 cities in Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North and South Carolina, and Tennessee. Their goal was to check the accessibility of these civic places and to see how well these public sites met the access needs of individuals with a variety of disabilities.

The intention was not to ‘catch their cities napping’ or to report them for not being in full compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Instead, the goal was to examine and report on how easily—or not—people with visual, hearing, and mobility disabilities could enter a public facility and use the services available to people without disabilities.

One of the goals of the ADA is to remove access barriers and promote full and equal participation in civic life for individuals with disabilities. The cross-disability teams of people looking at access to public facilities in seven Southeast states were part of the Community Participation Research Project, conducted jointly by the Southeast ADA Center, its State Affiliates and the Burton Blatt Institute at Syracuse University. This research project was unique because it used Participatory Action Research (PAR). PAR research is developed and implemented in full collaboration between people with disabilities and researchers, focusing on their concerns and interests while still maintaining research protocols and validity.

In this study, seven teams of 5-6 researchers surveyed sites in a total of 14 cities, two cities in each state. The cities were matched in terms of demographics. The only difference was that one city had previously reached a Settlement Agreement with the Department of Justice to correct access barriers identified in one or more of its city facilities. Georgia was used as a pilot site to test the survey instruments and the way in which the local researchers were trained. Cities in the other six states were surveyed over the next two years, with state teams visiting both of their two cities within a few days of each other.

One of the things they found was that many of the public entities did not fully understand what good access means. As one local researcher explained,

“It is unfortunate that some public venues think they are providing adequate access to services, but the consumer’s experience may be quite different.”

They also found that public entities often did not realize that people with different disabilities had different access needs. For example, two local researchers—one who uses a wheelchair and one who is blind—had very different experiences when they visited the same library. Both were able to enter the library easily. However, the person using a wheelchair was able to use the library’s computer independently to locate the book he wanted while the woman who was blind discovered that she could not use the library computers with a screen reader and that the staff didn’t know how to open the software that would let her search the files by herself.

In fact, one of the study findings was that people who were blind or who had low vision found the city sites less accessible overall than did people who used wheelchairs or who were deaf.

For example, because the public restrooms in a city park were not identified in Braille and raised lettering, one man who was blind started to enter the women’s restroom by mistake. Another, more frustrating, situation took place in a public library. One researcher asked about library materials for individuals with vision-related disabilities and received little helpful information. However, in talking to another researcher later, she discovered that the library had a good collection of audiobooks.

Researchers who used wheelchairs or who were hard-of-hearing also discovered some problems. Individuals who use wheelchairs identified barriers related to parking enforcement, steep ramps, counter heights, thresholds, and door handles. Another researcher contacted a civic center prior to arriving and asked if they had an assistive listening system (ALS). He was told that they did not have an ALS but on the day of the performance when he asked again, he was given headphones without comment or delay.

As a researcher pointed out:

“Most of the places I went, there was more assistance available than I turned up beforehand [on the website or by contacting the site directly]. Perhaps people didn’t know what was available or had not been trained to answer questions about providing assistance. All public places should have a brochure or flyer printed to show what accommodations or assistance they have.”

Researchers using a TTY (Telecommunication Device for the Deaf) found many public agencies either did not have one or did not know how to use it. And, in some cases, researchers noted that absent or hard to find and see signage, for accessible entrances, emergency exits, or identifying restrooms, was frustrating and challenging. More seriously, one researcher reported that when emergency exit information was reviewed for the audience at a civic center, there was no mention of accessible emergency exits.

Despite these access issues, the researchers reported delight at the many examples of accessibility that they encountered, including some new discoveries such as accessible park benches and picnic tables. One researcher noted “this was the most accessible website I have ever seen. I could completely access the entire website and library into my screen reader.” They also noted many staff contributed to positive experiences, including demonstrating a willingness to put together a needed accommodation. One researcher reported receiving a “very prompt and helpful response” and another added “excellent facility for accessibility. Staff is knowledgeable and sensitive to persons with disability.” In fact, almost two-thirds of the time researchers found that entities had a staff member who coordinated services for people with disabilities. Even when access barriers were encountered, the willingness of staff to try to resolve the issue went a long way toward easing the researchers’ frustration.

Finally, the PAR project provided opportunities for increased understanding and appreciation of all the issues involved in providing good access. Because people with disabilities were integral to the research from start to finish, they were aware of subtle access needs that others without disabilities would likely overlook. Their participation in the project also increased their own awareness of the areas where more education and guidance were needed.

“It’s always eye opening to realize how few people take issues of accessibility truly into consideration when running public places. Clearly, much more information is needed and ways to implement them developed.”

Another commented:

“I know how to get around my own city. Know the accessible entrances and how to ask for the accommodations I need. But when I visited the other city, I was clueless. Sometimes I had to circle the building several times before I found the accessible entrance or figured out where the elevator was. How would someone visiting my city figure out how to get places? I never thought about that before.”

As a result of their involvement with the PAR project, many researchers expressed positive feelings from having engaged in the site visits, learned a good deal, and for some, left feeling a greater desire to engage in local change efforts to remove access barriers.

The researchers also noted a growing awareness on the part of city staff:

“The last person who visited the city hall was one of the research team members without a disability. As she entered the hallway near the offices, she heard a couple of individuals talking. A gentleman said, “What I want to know is, are we prepared?” A woman responded, “We have spaces for wheelchairs….” The gentleman then said, “I’m not just talking about people in chairs, I mean all types – do we have alternative formats?””

The rest of the conversation was not clear. However, the team members clearly had increased staff awareness of the full range of disability access needs.

For free, confidential information, technical assistance and answers to all questions regarding the ADA, please contact your regional ADA Center by calling 1-800-949-4232 (voice/tty).

Accessible Businesses Welcome Everyone

For most people, their major concern when running errands and shopping is whether they can fit it all they need to do into the time available. For people with disabilities, however, particularly for those with physical disabilities, their major concern is whether they can get into the stores or buildings in the first place and, once in, whether they have access to the goods and services they need.

Stores, theaters and other buildings were not intended to shut out people with disabilities—but the built environment has been highly effective in denying access to people who have limited use of hands or legs. A single step, a one-inch threshold, a heavy door, or a round doorknob can make entry into a building difficult, if not impassible. And once someone with a mobility impairment has struggled to get inside, cluttered aisles or objects blocking call buttons on elevators can significantly impede their ability to do what it is that they came inside to do, whether that is to buy a new shirt or visit a physician’s office.

“For the most part, the bigger retail stores—like Walmart, Kohls, TJ Maxx—have plenty of room for me to get around,” says Dylan Brown of Nashville, TN. “But I still run into problems with the amount of items they try to put into the very small stores in malls and strip malls. Overstocking in the small stores means that I can’t get through the aisles, so I just don’t go in.”

Dylan has quadriplegia as the result of an automobile accident in 2002 and uses a powered chair. He drives an adapted van and can usually get around Nashville and do what he wants to do except when it comes to some places that are unclear on the concept of accessibility:

“There’s a newly renovated, posh bar in town. It has access into the bar and the restrooms are accessible. But there is not one seat in the place where I would be eye-level with my peers. Even the booths have a step up. I went out to the smoking patio but that was built up also, with wood high-rise seating all around the edge. There was no way I could have a drink and be at eye level with my friends. I couldn’t even put my drink down without reaching up to the table. It’s like they went out of their way to make it inaccessible.

“I felt so uncomfortable. I know I’m in a chair but I’m always around active people, and you get going and you just forget. Then, when you get to a place that is so blatantly inaccessible, the term crippled comes back in.”

The Americans with Disabilities Act, passed nearly unanimously by both houses of Congress and signed into law by President George H.W. Bush on July 26, 1990, mandates that places that offer their goods and services to the public must be accessible to people with a variety of disabilities. Effective January 26, 1992, all places of business have been required to make their goods and services available to and useable by people with disabilities to the extent that it is readily achievable (e.g., that changes can be accomplished without much difficulty or expense). Furthermore, all new construction and renovations to existing buildings must be accessible to and usable by people with disabilities to the fullest extent possible.

Lack of access is more than an inconvenience for people with disabilities; for many, accessible stores, professional offices, theaters, libraries, state and local government offices and medical facilities can mean the difference between a life of independence and full immersion in the community and one of dependence and restrictive living situations.

Living Independence for Everyone (LIFE) of Mississippi, the statewide Center for Independence (CIL) in Mississippi, believes so strongly in promoting independence for people with disabilities that the CIL uses Americorps volunteers to do community access surveys to ensure that people leaving nursing homes or other congregate facilities will be able to move about effectively within the community. The Americorps members in Project LINC focus on those places that individuals with disabilities were most likely to want to use. When doing a Project LINC site survey, the Americorps volunteers introduce themselves to the places they want to survey, provide information about the ADA and explain that their purpose is to make places more accessible for people with disabilities, not to report anyone for failure to comply with the ADA. They then ask permission to conduct the survey and to return at a later date for a follow-up visit.

Desmeon Thomas, of Jackson, Mississippi, was both an Americorps volunteer doing the surveys and a beneficiary of increased access in his immediate community. Desmeon sustained a spinal cord injury in 2002 when he was 19 years old. He approached the LIFE Center for assistance in learning how to live with a disability. When he learned about Americorps and Project LINC, he signed up as an Americorps volunteer, receiving a stipend for his work on the project and becoming eligible for $4000 year for his two years of service to put toward his education.

As Desmeon explains, “we would survey places that are just around the corner from where someone moving into a community would be living. That means places like corner stores, dollar stores—we surveyed a lot of dollar stores; that’s where we can afford to shop!—fast food restaurants and grocery stores.

“I’m quadriplegic, so I need a lot of help with everything. I use a power chair so I can get around on my own, but I’m not the lightest person in the world, and my parents are getting older. I didn’t want to have to go into a nursing home but I knew I couldn’t stay with my parents much longer either. So I looked for a way to live on my own. LIFE hooked me up with the Medicaid Waiver* program that pays for personal attendants to help me 8 hours a day, 7 days a week. I use them for four hours in the morning to get me up and dressed and ready for the day, for four hours at night to get me ready for bed.

“Now I rent my own house, drive a Dodge Caravan and can do most of my own shopping. Grocery stores have been great! I can get around easily, and they always send someone to help me if I ask. My power chair helps raise me up so I can usually reach things on the shelves. If not, the grocery store clerks help me.

“And the other places I need to go are also pretty accessible, thanks to the survey work we did. Well, sometimes I need to go into a side or back entrance to some places…and the movie theater near me only has accessible seats right in the very front row, which is too close to the screen and makes it hard to watch without getting a stiff neck. But for the most part I can get where I need and want to go.”

*The Medicaid Waiver: Section 1915 (c) of the Social Security Act enables states to request a waiver of applicable federal Medicaid requirements to provide enhanced community support services to those Medicaid beneficiaries who would otherwise require institutional care.

Reasonable Accommodations Mean Getting the Job Done

Employees with disabilities may do a job differently—they may use adapted computers, screen reading software, large print materials or raised desks that can accommodate a wheelchair—but they get the job done like any other employee in their position. They are not asking for special treatment or to be excused from performing the essential functions of their jobs. But they do ask that they be given the tools or supports they need to perform these tasks competently.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was passed almost unanimously by both the House and the Senate in July 1990. It provides civil rights protections to individuals with disability and prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability. Title I of the ADA requires that employers make reasonable accommodations unless making those accommodations creates significant difficulty or expense. Reasonable accommodations are changes to the workplace or the way things are customarily done; they are intended to allow qualified employees with disabilities to perform the essential functions of their jobs.

Why is the Americans with Disabilities Act Needed?

Cheri Hofmann, who has a significant hearing loss, had worked as a paralegal position for 13 years, collecting awards and superior performance reviews throughout her career. Until her job duties changed in her 14th year, she never needed any changes to her workplace or different equipment to perform her job well. When her job duties in changed, however, she asked for a few, modest changes to her workplace.

“In my 14th year, my job had additional duties that required me to be able to assist clients while others were on break and to answer phones. I asked for a mirror to be placed where I could see the door opening when clients came in, a head set for the telephone with amplification, and to re-position my desk to also have a better view of the front door. They refused the mirror, saying it would be a distraction to the other paralegals; they said to reposition my desk would cause the entire area to have to be changed; and they said they ordered a head set, but it never came. Instead they gave me a phone with a volume control but it was not effective.”

None of these changes cost more than $30, but without them, Cheri was unable to do her job and was eventually forced to leave.

Cheri’s difficulties with her employer took place before the ADA too effect. Under Title I of the ADA now, however, employers with 15 or more employees are required to provide reasonable accommodations to qualified applicants or employees with disabilities unless to do so would result in an undue burden. Reasonable accommodations are changes to the workplace, modifications in workplace policies, or provision of assistive technology that allow a qualified employee with a disability to perform the essential functions of the job.

What are Reasonable Accommodations?

A reasonable accommodation is any change to the work environment or to the way that things are customarily done that enables an individual with a disability to enjoy equal employment opportunities. Rene Cummins, Executive Director of a Center for Independent Living in North Carolina, has low vision who relies on assistive technology every day. She uses a screen reader to read computer text and a scanner to scan print materials into the computer where they can be read back to her. Christinne Rudd has cerebral palsy and walks with a cane. Her employer in Florida provided a printer in her office so that she doesn’t have to go to the main printer to retrieve letters and other documents. Her employer has also offered to provide a scooter, if necessary, when there are employee outings and reimburses her for cab fare for her local travel on company business.

Patricia Valladares is an outreach worker for a social services agency in Tennessee. Patricia is blind and uses JAWS software that reads computer text, and the Open Book program that scans in printed material and reads it back so she can read read and save printed documents. She also asks that handouts for conferences and trainings be given to her on CDs.

John Hobgood is a social worker in Texas who recived a traumatic brain injury in a motor vehicle accident. As the result of his head injury, John has difficulty paying attention, so he uses a daytimer to keep his schedule and relies on the Outlook calendar computer software to remind him of appointments. Reading is difficult, so John uses free screen reader software from Readplease.com. Individuals with traumatic head injury often have difficulty concentrating at the end of the day. When his agency moved to a 4-day week of 10 hour days, John and another co-worker asked for a modified schedule in which they would remain on the 5-day week. Their requests were granted, and the two come into work on the 5th day, lock the door, answer phones, and catch up with their paperwork.

John Duplessis, a social worker in Alabama who became legally blind as an adult, relies on a tape recorder that is “glued to my side for dictating notes and recording conversations that I need to remember.” He uses Zoom Text software to enlarge text on his computer screen and uses its speech function to read aloud what is on the screen. John also has talking Caller I.D. on his landline and cell phones to announce the name and number of incoming calls. In addition, he uses glasses with magnification to read printed documents and to write. Even so, he notes wryly, “I don’t write quickly and my penmanship is not very good.”

Not all effective accommodations need to be provided by the employer. Many people with disabilities can use “off the shelf” assistive technology to meet their personal needs. For example, Eric Dupre who has a learning disability thrives in his fast-paced, unpredictable job as a news photojournalist. To keep himself on track, Eric carries “a small pad with me each day to write down my schedule and use an electronic pocket reminder for assignments that may be projected in the future. I use a GPS to assist me to find locations where I have to be. I purchased my own accommodations for under $100.”

Although many people with disabilities can perform all their job duties without an accommodation of any sort, others encounter workplace barriers that hinder or prevent them from performing competently on the job. By mandating reasonable accommodations and changes to the work environment as long as they do not create an undue burden, Title I of the ADA make it possible for qualified employees with disabilities to demonstrate their competence and ability to perform on the job.

Inclusion from the Start: Campus Collaboration Avoids Access Pitfalls

When changes are made to a college or university campus, planning ahead for access avoids costly errors. It also avoids the inadvertent creation of access barriers that make it difficult or impossible for students, visitors, and staff with disabilities to enjoy full use of all that the institution has to offer. One university—Florida State University (FSU) in Tallahassee—has taken steps to ensure that neither of these problems occur on their campus.

FSU’s fully collaborative process ensures that access is included from the very start when any new construction or renovation is planned. This entails coordination and collaboration among nearly 80 individuals, including the Office of Equal Employment Opportunity Compliance, the Facilities Vice President, Facilities Designer, Facilities Planners, and Project Manager as well as representatives from 20 or more other campus departments. It also requires some creative thinking and planning to assure maximum access throughout all phases of what can be a lengthy period of construction.

As Amy Wagner, Assistant Director of the University’s Office of Equal Employment Opportunity Compliance explains,

“We try to proactively address construction issues prior to the initiation of any new construction efforts. However, there are times in which we have had to make adjustments during a construction build due to the length of time a project would take to complete. For instance, during a 10-month construction project, a sidewalk was opened and closed at various points and required a phasing in/out of the project. The road under construction was a half mile long and the construction was done in four phases. We discussed the impact of a phased project on students with and without disabilities. In addition, we examined the options for maintaining access during the construction period. Breaking the project into four phases allowed for access at all times during the construction process. As one section was completed, it was then re-opened to provide access while another section was closed according to the phased project schedule.”

In addition, collaboration and cooperation among all offices and departments has nurtured an atmosphere of mutual trust and respect. Key players are routinely invited to participate in meetings in addition to the quarterly meetings of the entire planning team to ensure that accessibility concerns are addressed early on. For example, the campus is currently undergoing new construction activity in which Ms. Wagner has been called upon by project managers to address concerns involving ADA-related access issues such as installation of sidewalks, doorways, hood vents in school laboratories, detectable warnings, signage, and accessible routes/pathways around construction zones.

Ms. Wagner prefers not to refer to a project as challenging but as one that is “unknown territory” requiring innovative thinking and creativity on the university’s part to ensure that it is ADA compliant in all of its activities.

Florida State University entered into “unknown territory” in 2011 when the FSU Flying High Circus, one of only two collegiate circuses in the United States, wanted to purchase a new tent, seating, and flooring. The Circus wanted to purchase an interlocking floor but was aware that it might present access concerns. FSU wanted to ensure that the flooring was accessible to people with disabilities and did not present the possibility of a trip-hazard or an accessibility barrier for wheelchair users in the event the interlocking pads became disengaged. Ms. Wagner spent time researching precedence and best-practices governing this type of situation. As a result, the new tent, seating areas, and paths of travel throughout the tent not only meet but exceed the ADA standards for accessible seating and paths of travel.

FSU’s intentional effort to include Ms. Wagner in all planning efforts related to new construction projects is an example of a university that is committed to ensuring full inclusion and ensuring that full access is at the forefront of any and all ventures to enhance and/or improve the campus infrastructure. Ms. Wagner reiterates the importance of her office’s collaboration with facilities and maintenance staff, construction managers, and others involved in the planning of new construction from the very start to ensure that access and full inclusion are primary considerations throughout the life of any project.

The ADA: It’s a Family Affair

In our family, if I couldn’t go, none of us could go.

Most people think of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) as legislation that promotes access and equal opportunity for people with disabilities. What they often don’t realize is that the ADA also creates access and equal opportunity for families and friends as well.

Why the ADA? Just ask Sara Ezell.

“In the past 40 years, I have seen things change hugely. It’s been an exciting time because of the ADA. If not for the ADA, where would I be today?”

Sara grew up in a close-knit family. Because she was born with osteogenesis imperfecta, a bone disorder often called “brittle bone disease,” Sara used a wheelchair most of the time. When she was a child, “accessibility was an issue everywhere. Disability was not an issue in our family, but access was. When I could not get into a restaurant or a store with my brothers and parents, it was an insult to our whole family—and we didn’t go in. In our family, if I couldn’t go, none of us could go.”

When Sara became a teenager, things got to be embarrassing, especially when she went out on a blind date. Faced with the prospect of getting into an inaccessible entrance, Sara’s date would offer to lift her and her chair up the two stairs at the entrance, making an awkward situation even more uncomfortable.

When Sara entered Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, pre-ADA in 1989, no freshman dorm rooms were accessible. Vanderbilt was determined to have Sara on campus, so they turned an administration office into a dorm room. As Sara explains, “we made do with it. All of my neighbors were Deans, and I got to know them pretty well. But after 5:00 PM, no one was there. It was not too bad, but it was not a natural dorm experience, and I missed the experience of living in a dorm with other students.”

Vanderbilt continued in its efforts to provide campus-wide access, including dorm rooms, for its students with disabilities. Although the ADA had recently been passed and would be going into effect within two years, “nobody knew what to do yet. There was a two-inch thick book of scoping requirements from the US Access Board that the University used but it wasn’t clear who would pay for the changes.

“It took a lot of doing, but by the time I graduated, I was living in a hall with other students—and I had a choice of rooms to pick from! And with every dorm renovation, the University would add more rooms. After I graduated, I went to work for the ADA office at Vanderbilt. And it was fun to see the faces of incoming freshmen with disabilities when I told them you can live here or here and here…”

As Sara reflects on her experiences pre- and post-ADA, she notes that “now so many places are completely accessible. It’s amazing to see.”

It’s still a family affair

Sara’s disability has had a rippling effect across generations. Both of her brothers worked at an Easter Seals camp in East Tennessee one summer and loved it. Her oldest brother, Chase, got a degree in Recreational Therapy. Chase was interested in physical accessibility of Tennessee State Parks, so he wrote his Master’s Thesis on the topic—using Sara as a guinea pig to “try out” the steepness of ramps and the smoothness of trails. “It was not always fun,” she recalls.

As for the next generation, Sara says, “Kids get it at a level that adults just don’t.”

“My two nieces and my nephew are my pride and joy, and they are not afraid to ask questions about disability. My niece Evelyn has befriended a little girl in her classroom who has cerebral palsy. And she had a lot of questions for me, like ‘why does she have a lady with her all the time?’ My niece just wanted to understand so she could figure out how she could help her and sit with her at lunch.

“It’s been fun to teach them about accessibility. My little nephew is just now starting to discover about accessibility. When we are together and there’s some place that his Aunt Sissy cannot go, he’s annoyed to death and just doesn’t understand. There’s a generation of militant little people who are going to be just great!”

Rhode Island Commercial Wheelchair Vans

According to the Center for Personal Assistance Services, about 155,000 individuals living in Rhode Island were considered to have a disability in 2005. Specifically, about 2.6% of the population of Rhode Island have difficulty with every day tasks such as taking a bath, getting dressed, moving about the house, and driving.

rhode-island-disability rhode-island-commercial-wheelchair-vans newenglandwheelchairvan.com

At the VMi New England Mobility Center, we offer specialized transportation products and services for private and commercial use. For more than 25 years we have been servicing the commercial and personal wheelchair vehicle needs of the state of Rhode Island including Providence and Newport, as well as Briston, Kent and Washington counties.

If your business needs a new or used accessible van, bus, shuttle or other commercial vehicle in Rhode Island, look through our online inventory to find the vehicle that’s right for you. View our commercial accessible vehicles, used vans and buses, modifications and accessories or visit our commercial wheelchair van and bus inventory.

We can help you evaluate how many passengers you need to carry, Rhode Island state regulatory requirements and other commercial considerations when buying a wheelchair van, replacement parts or accessories.

After VMi New England Mobility Center helps you locate the perfect commercial wheelchair van, bus, shuttle, or ambulette, we deliver! We can deliver it right to your door. We will drive, tow or trailer your wheelchair accessible vehicle to New Hampshire, to your business. We often make deliveries to Providence and Newport, so contact us today for your commercial mobility needs, so contact us today.

Learn more about delivery information for Rhode Island wheelchair vans and parts and our commercial warranty.

We look forward to helping your business provide exceptional service to your wheelchair users, school students, group homes, and rehab centers in the great state of Rhode Island.

Wheelchair Van Service Considerations Vermont

Wheelchair Van Service Considerations in VT

vermont wheelchair-van-service-considerations newenglandwheelchairvan.com

At VMi New England Mobility Center, we believe that the service you receive in Vermont after you purchase a wheelchair van is just as important as the service you received during your purchasing process. Our main goal is to keep you and the other passengers in the vehicle as safe as possible, which is why our wheelchair van service offerings are unlike any others in the vehicle modification industry.

Trained Service Technicians

All VMi New England Mobility Center Technicians are certified in the mobility equipment that is sold, installed, and serviced.  We are held to the highest standards in the adaptive vehicle industry.

Some of Longest Warranties in the Vehicle Modification Industry

We want to protect our customers and make sure that we offer the best options for them.

Operational Maintenance Program

For more than 27 years we have implemented and evolved a multi-faceted operational maintenance schedule unavailable at any other facility in the country to assist you in maintaining optimum driving performance while also assessing critical component deterioration before it occurs. Our Service Technicians will provide you with list of all work performed on your wheelchair accessible vehicle and a list of any items that may require future attention. Also, we will inform you of any upcoming maintenance and service you may need done to your wheelchair accessible vehicle in order to make sure your adaptive vehicle is in top condition.

Other dealers want your old vans to rust and fall apart so they can sell you a new one.

Wheelchair van rust not at newenglandwheelchairvan.com if you bring it to us for service
a local mobility dealers idea of taking care of your wheelchair van

Operational Maintenance of Adaptive Mobility Equipment on:

  • Lowered Floor Wheelchair Van (New & Used)
  • Full-Size Wheelchair Vans (New & Used)
  • Primary and Secondary Driving Controls
  • Wheelchair Lifts and Scooter Lifts
  • Wheelchair Securement Systems (automatic and manual)
  • Power Seat Bases
  • Power Door Operators

Special service work or repairs to your Adaptive Equipment

Installation of new Adaptive Equipment on new and used wheelchair vans such as:

  • Hand Controls
  • Wheelchair Lifts and Scooter Lifts
  • Raised Doors
  • Lowered Floors
  • Specialized gas, brake, and steering systems
  • Turning Automotive Seats

Maine Commercial Wheelchair Vans

According to the 2005 American Community Study by the Center for Personal Assistance Services, approximately 228,000 individuals living in Maine are considered to be disabled in some manner. Specifically, about 2.7% of the population of Maine have difficulty with every day tasks such as taking a bath, getting dressed, moving about the house, and driving.

maine-disability maine-commercial-wheelchair-vans newenglandwheelchairvan.com

At the VMi New England Mobility Center, we offer specialized transportation products and services for private and commercial use. For more than 25 years we have been servicing the commercial and personal wheelchair vehicle needs of the state of Maine including the Portland area and Cumberland, Sagadahac and York counties.

If your business needs a new or used accessible van, bus, shuttle or other commercial vehicle in Maine, look through our online inventory to find the vehicle that’s right for you. View our commercial accessible vehicles, used vans and buses, modifications and accessories or visit our commercial wheelchair van and bus inventory.

We can help you evaluate how many passengers you need to carry, Maine state regulatory requirements and other commercial considerations when buying a wheelchair van, replacement parts or accessories.

After VMi New England Mobility Center helps you locate the perfect commercial wheelchair van, bus, shuttle, or ambulette, we deliver! We can deliver it right to your door. We will drive, tow or trailer your wheelchair accessible vehicle to Maine, to your business. We often make deliveries to Cumberland County, Sagadahoc County and York County, so contact us today for your commercial mobility needs, so contact us today.

Learn more about delivery information for Maine wheelchair vans and parts and our commercial warranty.

We look forward to helping your business provide exceptional service to your wheelchair users, school students, group homes, and rehab centers in the great state of Maine.

Wheelchair Van Service Considerations Connecticut

Wheelchair Van Service Considerations in CT

connecticut wheelchair-van-service-considerations newenglandwheelchairvan.com

At VMi New England Mobility Center, we believe that the service you receive after you purchase a wheelchair van is just as important as the service you received during your purchasing process. Our main goal is to keep you and the other passengers in the vehicle as safe as possible, which is why our wheelchair van service offerings are unlike any others in the vehicle modification industry.

Trained Service Technicians

All VMi New England Mobility Center Technicians are certified in the mobility equipment that is sold, installed, and serviced.  We are held to the highest standards in the adaptive vehicle industry.

Some of Longest Warranties in the Vehicle Modification Industry

We want to protect our customers and make sure that we offer the best options for them.

Operational Maintenance Program

For more than 27 years we have implemented and evolved a multi-faceted operational maintenance schedule unavailable at any other facility in the country to assist you in maintaining optimum driving performance while also assessing critical component deterioration before it occurs. Our Service Technicians will provide you with list of all work performed on your wheelchair accessible vehicle and a list of any items that may require future attention. Also, we will inform you of any upcoming maintenance and service you may need done to your wheelchair accessible vehicle in order to make sure your adaptive vehicle is in top condition.

Other dealers want your old vans to rust and fall apart so they can sell you a new one.

Wheelchair van rust not at newenglandwheelchairvan.com if you bring it to us for service
a local mobility dealers idea of taking care of your wheelchair van

Operational Maintenance of Adaptive Mobility Equipment on:

  • Lowered Floor Wheelchair Van (New & Used)
  • Full-Size Wheelchair Vans (New & Used)
  • Primary and Secondary Driving Controls
  • Wheelchair Lifts and Scooter Lifts
  • Wheelchair Securement Systems (automatic and manual)
  • Power Seat Bases
  • Power Door Operators

Special service work or repairs to your Adaptive Equipment

Installation of new Adaptive Equipment on new and used wheelchair vans such as:

  • Hand Controls
  • Wheelchair Lifts and Scooter Lifts
  • Raised Doors
  • Lowered Floors
  • Specialized gas, brake, and steering systems
  • Turning Automotive Seats

New York Commercial Wheelchair Vans

According to the Center for Personal Assistance Services, about 2,537,000 individuals living in New York were considered to have a disability in 2005. Specifically, about 2.8% of the population of New York have difficulty with every day tasks such as taking a bath, getting dressed, moving about the house, and driving.

 new-york-disability new-york-commercial-wheelchair-vans newenglandwheelchairvan.com

At the VMi New England Mobility Center, we offer specialized transportation products and services for private and commercial use. For more than 25 years we have been servicing the commercial and personal wheelchair vehicle needs of the country of New York; the Metropolitan New York and Hudson Valley areas, including Suffolk, Nassau, Dutchess, Orange and Ulster counties.

If your business needs a new or used accessible van, bus, shuttle or other commercial vehicle in New York, look through our online inventory to find the vehicle that’s right for you. View our commercial accessible vehicles, used vans and buses, modifications and accessories or visit our commercial wheelchair van and bus inventory.

We can help you evaluate how many passengers you need to carry, New York state regulatory requirements and other commercial considerations when buying a wheelchair van, replacement parts or accessories.

After VMi New England Mobility Center helps you locate the perfect commercial wheelchair van, bus, shuttle, or ambulette, we deliver! We can deliver it right to your door. We will drive, tow or trailer your wheelchair accessible vehicle to New York, to your business. We often make deliveries to Kingston, Poughkeepsie, as well as Suffolk County, Nassau County, and New York City, so contact us today for your commercial mobility needs, so contact us today.

Learn more about delivery information for New York wheelchair vans and parts and our commercial warranty.

We look forward to helping your business provide exceptional service to your wheelchair users, school students, group homes, and rehab centers in the country of New York City, so contact us today for your commercial mobility needs.

Wheelchair Van Service Considerations Rhode Island

Wheelchair Van Service Considerations in Rhode Island

Rhode Island wheelchair-van-service-considerations newenglandwheelchairvan.com

At VMi New England Mobility Center, we believe that the service you receive in Rhode Island after you purchase a wheelchair van is just as important as the service you received during your purchasing process. Our main goal is to keep you and the other passengers in the vehicle as safe as possible, which is why our wheelchair van service for you in RI offerings are unlike any others in the vehicle modification industry.

Trained Service Technicians

All VMi New England Mobility Center Technicians are certified in the mobility equipment that is sold, installed, and serviced.  We are held to the highest standards in the adaptive vehicle industry.

Some of Longest Warranties in the Vehicle Modification Industry

We want to protect our customers and make sure that we offer the best options for them.

Operational Maintenance Program

For more than 27 years we have implemented and evolved a multi-faceted operational maintenance schedule unavailable at any other facility in the country to assist you in maintaining optimum driving performance while also assessing critical component deterioration before it occurs. Our Service Technicians will provide you with list of all work performed on your wheelchair accessible vehicle and a list of any items that may require future attention. Also, we will inform you of any upcoming maintenance and service you may need done to your wheelchair accessible vehicle in order to make sure your adaptive vehicle is in top condition.

Other dealers want your old vans to rust and fall apart so they can sell you a new one.

Wheelchair van rust not at newenglandwheelchairvan.com if you bring it to us for service
a local mobility dealers idea of taking care of your wheelchair van

Operational Maintenance of Adaptive Mobility Equipment on:

  • Lowered Floor Wheelchair Van (New & Used)
  • Full-Size Wheelchair Vans (New & Used)
  • Primary and Secondary Driving Controls
  • Wheelchair Lifts and Scooter Lifts
  • Wheelchair Securement Systems (automatic and manual)
  • Power Seat Bases
  • Power Door Operators

Special service work or repairs to your Adaptive Equipment

Installation of new Adaptive Equipment on new and used wheelchair vans such as:

  • Hand Controls
  • Wheelchair Lifts and Scooter Lifts
  • Raised Doors
  • Lowered Floors
  • Specialized gas, brake, and steering systems
  • Turning Automotive Seats

New Hampshire Commercial Wheelchair Vans

According to the Center for Personal Assistance Services, about 174,000 individuals living in New Hampshire were considered to have a disability in 2005. Specifically, about 2.5% of the population of New Hampshire have difficulty with every day tasks such as taking a bath, getting dressed, moving about the house, and driving.

new-hampshire-disability new-hampshire-commercial-wheelchair-vans newenglandwheelchairvan.com

 

At the VMi New England Mobility Center, we offer specialized transportation products and services for private and commercial use. For more than 25 years we have been servicing the commercial and personal wheelchair vehicle needs of the state of New Hampshire including Manchester, and Merrimack, Belknap, Rockingham and Strafford counties.

If your business needs a new or used accessible van, bus, shuttle or other commercial vehicle in New Hampshire, look through our online inventory to find the vehicle that’s right for you. View our commercial accessible vehicles, used vans and buses, modifications and accessories or visit our commercial wheelchair van and bus inventory.

We can help you evaluate how many passengers you need to carry, New Hampshire state regulatory requirements and other commercial considerations when buying a wheelchair van, replacement parts or accessories in New Hampshire.

After VMi New England Mobility Center helps you locate the perfect commercial wheelchair van, bus, shuttle, or ambulette, we deliver! We can deliver it right to your door. We will drive, tow or trailer your wheelchair accessible vehicle to New Hampshire, to your business. We often make deliveries to Hillsborough County, Strafford County, Rockingham County, Belknap County and Merrimack County, so contact us today.

Learn more about delivery information for New Hampshire wheelchair vans and parts and our commercial warranty.

We look forward to helping your business provide exceptional service to your wheelchair users, school students, group homes, and rehab centers in the great state of New Hampshire.

Wheelchair Van Service Considerations Massachusetts

Wheelchair Van Service Considerations in Massachusetts

boston wheelchair-van-service-considerations newenglandwheelchairvan.com

At VMi New England Mobility Center, we believe that the service you receive in Massachusetts after you purchase a wheelchair van is just as important as the service you received during your purchasing process. Our main goal is to keep you and the other passengers in the vehicle as safe as possible, which is why our wheelchair van service offerings are unlike any others in the vehicle modification industry.

Trained Service Technicians in MA

All VMi New England Mobility Center Technicians are certified in the mobility equipment that is sold, installed, and serviced.  We are held to the highest standards in the adaptive vehicle industry.

Some of Longest Warranties in the Vehicle Modification Industry

We want to protect our customers and make sure that we offer the best options for them.

Operational Maintenance Program

For more than 27 years we have implemented and evolved a multi-faceted operational maintenance schedule unavailable at any other facility in the country to assist you in maintaining optimum driving performance while also assessing critical component deterioration before it occurs. Our Service Technicians will provide you with list of all work performed on your wheelchair accessible vehicle and a list of any items that may require future attention. Also, we will inform you of any upcoming maintenance and service you may need done to your wheelchair accessible vehicle in order to make sure your adaptive vehicle is in top condition.

Other dealers want your old vans to rust and fall apart so they can sell you a new one.

Wheelchair van rust not at newenglandwheelchairvan.com if you bring it to us for service
a local mobility dealers idea of taking care of your wheelchair van

Operational Maintenance of Adaptive Mobility Equipment on:

  • Lowered Floor Wheelchair Van (New & Used)
  • Full-Size Wheelchair Vans (New & Used)
  • Primary and Secondary Driving Controls
  • Wheelchair Lifts and Scooter Lifts
  • Wheelchair Securement Systems (automatic and manual)
  • Power Seat Bases
  • Power Door Operators

Special service work or repairs to your Adaptive Equipment

Installation of new Adaptive Equipment on new and used wheelchair vans such as:

  • Hand Controls
  • Wheelchair Lifts and Scooter Lifts
  • Raised Doors
  • Lowered Floors
  • Specialized gas, brake, and steering systems
  • Turning Automotive Seats

Connecticut Commercial Wheelchair Vans

According to the 2005 American Community Study by the Center for Personal Assistance Services, approximately 408,000 individuals living in Connecticut are considered to be disabled in some manner. Specifically, about 2.3% of the population of Connecticut have difficulty with every day tasks such as taking a bath, getting dressed, moving about the house, and driving.

connecticut commercial and personal wheelchair vans newenglandwheelchairvan.com

At the VMi New England Mobility Center, we offer specialized transportation products and services for private and commercial use. For more than 25 years we have been servicing the commercial and personal wheelchair vehicle needs of the state of Connecticut including the Greater Hartford, Greater Bridgeport, Greater New Haven, Torrington, and surrounding counties.

If your business needs a new or used van, bus, shuttle or other commercial accessible vehicle in Connecticut, give us a call to find the vehicle that suits your requirements. Contact us for any of your commercial wheelchair vehicles, used vans and buses, modifications and upfit needs

We can help you evaluate how many passengers you need to carry, Connecticut State regulatory requirements and other commercial considerations when buying a wheelchair van, replacement parts or accessories in Connecticut.

After VMi New England Mobility Center helps you locate the perfect commercial wheelchair van, bus, shuttle, or ambulette, we deliver! We can deliver it right to your door. We will drive, tow or trailer your wheelchair accessible vehicle to Connecticut, right to your business. We often make deliveries to Fairfield County, New Haven County, Hartford County, Tolland County, Middlesex County, and Litchfield County, so contact us today for your commercial mobility needs.

Learn more about delivery information for Connecticut wheelchair vans and parts and our commercial warranty.

We look forward to helping your business provide exceptional service to your wheelchair users, school students, group homes, and rehab centers in the great state of Connecticut.

toyota sienna rampvan wheelchair & scooter accessible van

The Toyota Sienna wheelchair and scooter accessible van offers accessibility and convenience in a sporty, streamlined package. The bold, new attitude of this popular vehicle is a refreshing take on the traditional van.

boston toyota wheelchair vans newenglandwheelchairvan.com

The one touch power entry and exit system includes a power sliding side door, a power ramp, and a power auto-kneel system to reduce ramp angle and make the van easier to enter and exit for wheelchair or scooter users. The Toyota Sienna wheelchair van also features easily removable front seats to allow a wheelchair user to drive the vehicle (when properly equipped with hand controls) or to ride in the front passenger position.

The lightweight aluminum ramp extends to allow easy access to the interior for wheelchairs and scooters. A durable, non-skid powder-coated finish ensures superior traction. In the event of power failure, the ramp can be operated manually.

To make boarding even easier, most of our vans feature an integrated “kneeling” system. An actuator lowers the rear suspension while the door opens, which reduces the slope of the auto ramp.

Ramp van Standard Features

Auto Door The original door operator opens the sliding door at the touch of a button. The door can be operated with the standard remote control, or with one of the several interior control switches.

Auto Kneel The Rampvan features a “kneeling” system to make entering and exiting your vehicle even easier. An actuator lowers the rear suspension while the door opens, which reduces the slope of the automatic ramp.

Auto Ramp The lightweight ramp is offered in both In floor and Foldout versions, and offers unparalleled ease of access for wheelchair and scooter users. In the event of power failure, both the door and ramp can easily be operated manually.

Lowered Floor Up to 14.75″ lower than conventional minivans, the Ramp van’s floor is lowered from the firewall to the rear axle. With a choice of three securement positions, wheelchair users can enjoy the ride — and the view — from their chair

Removable Seating Both the driver and passenger seat can easily be removed for those who wish to ride up front or drive. By simply unlocking the seat base from the vehicle, the entire assembly can be rolled out of the vehicle via the ramp and reinstalled just as easily when needed.

The Ramp van combines sophisticated engineering with a combination of style, class, interior space and superior quality. At the heart of the Ramp van is the Toyota Sienna minivan chassis. Each Ramp van features a lowered floor to provide generous head room for wheelchair or scooter users. An integrated power sliding door and ramp enable full access to the vehicle. By offering conversions with both fold-out or in-floor ramps, we ensure that each customer gets the right conversion for his or her needs.

mobility van markets new england and beyond

VMi New England Mobility Center customers have come to us from all over the United States, from New England to Tennessee, Michigan to the District of Columbia. Our Bridgewater facility offers a unmatched capability to sell, service allow us to supply accessible commercial vehicles and personal-use wheelchair vans to clients throughout the area.

us census disability by state

Personal Conversion Wheelchair Vans

Our Bridgewater Mobility Center offers full service and sales to individuals throughout all of New England

Commercial Accessible Vans, Buses and Shuttles

We often sell, service, and deliver vehicles to the following areas:

States

Are you outside of any of these locations and still interested in a VMi New England Mobility Center conversion van or mobility product? Contact our expert sales staff, as we may still be able to assist you in finding the perfect commercial wheelchair van or accessible personal-use modification.

It’s all about choices

It’s all about choices wheelchair vans newenglandwheelchairvan.com

The theme of the website revolves around choice and making a knowledgeable decision. The site has reviews on manual rigid frame models, folding wheelchairs and power chairs. They even have a section on all-terrain wheelchairs and sports wheelchairs. Just about every type of mobility device is represented. One of the more popular wheelchairs in the rigid frame section is the Ti Lite ZRA with 42 user postings. Overall, they have a 3.76 end user rating. Among the highest rated rigid frames with a 5.0 rating, but with only 10 user reviews is the Lasher Sport, Llc BT-Mg.

To see what people are saying about your wheelchair or one that you may be looking at getting in the future, go to wheelchair reviews.

Scooter Reviews for Three and Four Wheeled Models

The website also has reviews and ratings for scooters. These include 3-wheel scooters, 4-wheel scooters, and lightweight scooters. Among the top reviewed in the lightweights is the Pride Mobility Go Go. To see the scooters listed and which one sounds like the right fit for your needs, go to scooter reviews.

About United Spinal

United Spinal was founded in 1946 by a group of paralyzed WWII veterans in New York City who advocated for greater civil rights and independence for themselves and their fellow veterans. Today, United Spinal is the largest non-profit organization dedicated to helping people living with spinal cord injuries and disorders (SCI/D). Its 35,000 members are of all ages and backgrounds and membership is free.

Other Resources

Other online websites for learning about different wheelchair makes and models include Spin Life and Disabled World. Getting as many opinions as you can from friends and support groups is highly suggested to find the right chair to meet your needs and personal preferences. Making a knowledgeable decision by doing a little research online may save you time and money.

Commercial Use Wheelchair Vans And Buses

commercial-use-wheelchair-vans-and-buses  newenglandwheelchairvan.com

VMi New England Mobility Center provides commercial wheelchair vans and buses, shuttle vans, shuttle buses and specialized conversions such as ambulettes and non-emergency medical transportation vehicles. We provide sales, service, rentals and all necessary replacement parts and accessories.

Many commercial wheelchair van, bus and shuttle floorplans are available. Call for up to date  commercial wheelchair van, bus and shuttle inventory. Call 508-697-6006 to speak to one of our commercial wheelchair van specialists right now.

Commercial Vans, Buses and Shuttles

Whether your clients are wheelchair users, ambulatory patients, school students, nursing homes, group homes, rehab centers, or extended care facilities, all have unique commercial handicap accessible van with commercial wheelchair lift transportation needs.

Some questions you’ll want to consider:

  • How many wheelchair passengers will you transport?
  • How many ambulatory/walking passengers will you transport?
  • What will be the typical combination?
  • Do you have to meet ADA or other regulatory requirements?

Whether it is maximizing client capacity, choosing a style that will blend in a neighborhood setting, or maximizing headroom for client and staff comfort, we provide wheelchair accessible vans, buses, and shuttles that balance those needs with the same great quality the industry has come to expect.

  • View our Commercial Accessible Vehicles
  • Find out about Used Vans and Buses

Commercial Vehicle Inventory

We carry both new and used wheelchair vans, buses and shuttle vans. We also list wheelchair van conversion “shells” that have been mostly completed and are only waiting for wheelchair position, seating instructions and other final details. We do our best to seek out quality used vehicles and make all necessary repairs and modifications before offering them for sale.

Van and Bus Modifications and Accessories

Wheelchair vans, buses and shuttles must work in numerous industries, applications and working conditions while serving people who are equally diverse. The number of clients and staff that must be transported, their age and abilities, regulations and corporate image are all major factors that influence and are affected by the modifications available. To make this possible, there are many modifications and accessories that can be added to wheelchair vans buses and shuttles to customize them for the end-user’s needs. Among the van and bus modifications available are wheelchair tie-downs, lifts and entryways.

  • See what Modifications and Accessories are available

Commercial Help and Resource Center

Our Commercial Help and Resource Center will help to answer many of your most common questions. The Commercial Help and Resource Center includes resources that we feel could provide benefit to our customers. Service tips, new product information, regulatory changes and many other subjects are covered on a regular basis. Our sales, service and management teams, as well as a few “industry expert” guests, put their thoughts and experiences to work for you. We are available for any questions you may have! At VMi New England Mobility Center, we strive to ensure that our customers and dealers get the results they value the most.

Commercial Warranty Information

Warranties on commercial wheelchair vans, buses and shuttle vans can sometimes be complicated because components such as the base chassis, heating and air conditioning, body modifications and other modifications come from different manufacturers and have varying lengths and depths of warranty coverage.  Our goal is to save you time and effort and keep your costs low.

Vans and Accessible Vehicles in Massachusetts

Vans and Accessible Vehicles in Massachusetts

boston vans-and-accessible-vehicles-in-massachusetts

You can have the wheelchair accessible van you want delivered straight to your home. VMi New England Mobility Center, Inc. provides nationwide sales and delivery services to our customers across the United States from our mobility headquarters in Bridgewater, MA. Our mobility consultants can help you find the handicap van that fits your individual needs, so you can gain the mobility you desire.

VMi New England Mobility Center sells new and certified pre-owned handicap vans and accessible vehicles that have been hand-picked to ensure our customers receive a wheelchair van that will last. Each new mobility vehicle comes with a brand-new conversion and warranty. Our inspection process and safety features make our handicapped vans ideal for individuals, families, and commercial businesses. You can browse our showroom first hand and see our selection of wheelchair vans for sale to find the one you want.

Delivery of your handicap van is as easy as the selection process. VMi New England Mobility Center delivers to any Massachusetts city. You can be in Boston, Cambridge, Foxboro, or Wilmington, and we will deliver your handicap accessible van direct to your driveway. Depending on the mobility vehicle you choose, we can deliver your accessible van within 48 hours. It’s just that easy.

Once you find the new or used wheelchair van you like, the next step is to contact a mobility consultant via email or telephone. He or she will take the time to explain the process and answer any questions you may have about van selection and safety features. We are proud of our customer service and glad to say we offer our customers a low price guarantee on all newly modified mobility center conversions. You can check out the competition, and you will find that we not only have best value in wheelchair vans, but our vans last longer. Give us a call today and learn how we can help you gain freedom and independence at 508-697-6006.

 

Massachusetts Wheelchair Accessible Transportation Services

 

VMi New England wheelchair vans Boston, MA

Massachusetts Wheelchair Accessible Transportation Services

Contact our certified mobility consultants at the mobility center with any questions about purchasing wheelchair accessible vehicles.
Links to ADA Paratransit, Wheelchair Accessible Taxi, and Non-Emergency Medical Transportation Services available in Massachusetts.

 
– ADA PARATRANSIT –
– REGULAR & WHEELCHAIR ACCESSIBLE TAXI SERVICES –

Beverly – Tri-City Taxi – Peabody, Danvers, Beverly, Salem, Marblehead

Boston – Boston Cab Dispatch – Boston
Boston – Brain Tree Taxi – Boston
Boston – Charlestown Taxi – Boston
Boston – Chelsea Taxi – Boston

Boston – East Boston Taxi – Boston
Boston – Hello Taxi – Brookline, Allston, Brighton, Boston
Boston – Hyde Park Taxi – Boston
Boston – Malden Cab – Boston
Boston – Massachusetts Cab – Boston

Boston – Metro-Cab – Wheelchair accessible vans available
Boston – Sharon Taxi – Boston
Boston – Somerville Cab – Boston
Boston – South Cab – South Boston
Cambridge – Cambridge Cab – Cambridge

Cape Cod – Cape Cab – Provincetown, Wellfleet, Chatham, Orleans
Cape Cod – Mercedes Cab – Provincetown, Truro, Wellfleet, Eastham
Falmouth – Falmouth Taxi – Falmouth
Hudson – Sunshine Taxi – Hudson, Westborough, Concord, London Black Cabs
Ipswich – Ipswich Taxi – Ipswich

Newton – Veterans Taxi – Newton, Needham, Weston, Wellesley, Waltham
Newton – Yellow Cab – West Newton
Plymouth – Mayflower Taxi – Plymouth
Quincy – Yellow Cab – Quincy
South Yarmouth – Barnstable Taxi – South Yarmouth

Waltham – Checker Cab – Waltham
Waltham – Patriot Taxi – Waltham
Watertown – Watertown Taxi – Watertown
Worburn – Checker Cab – Worburn
Worcester – Worcester Red Cabs – Wheelchair accessible vans available
Worcester – New Worcester Yellow Cab – Worcester
 

– NON-EMERGENCY MEDICAL TRANSPORTATION –

AMR – Attleboro/Taunton/Dartmouth, Brockton, Dedham, Haverhill/Hampstead, Milford, Newburyport, Plymouth, Springfield, & Worchester
CRT Cabulance – Pittfield, Berskhire County
LifeLine Ambulance Service – Arlington, Brighton, Concord, Framingham, Milford, Needham, Norwood,  Peabody, Woburn, Worchester + New Hampshire Locations
People Movers STS – Throughout New England – Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut

 

Contact our certified mobility consultants at the New England mobility center with any questions about purchasing wheelchair accessible vehicles.

ON THE ROAD TO INDEPENDENCE By Lori A. Frankian 5/5/1997

 

ON THE ROAD TO INDEPENDENCE

By Lori A. Frankian 5/5/1997

Can you imagine waiting 14 years to get behind the wheel of your very first vehicle?  If you are physically challenged you may know what “waiting” is all about.  I am 30 years old and confined to an electric wheelchair due to Spinal Muscular Atrophy, a fabulous little disease that affects my muscles and nerve cells.  Why did I wait so long to get my license you ask? In all honesty, there was no real effort made to raise the money for a new van when I reached legal age to drive.  A year later at 17, I moved to Boston to attend Northeastern University and who needs a car while attending college in the city?  I attended the five year school, graduated and decided to remain in the city and establish a career for myself as an theatre / film administrator.  The years passed and my patience for traveling out of my way to find an accessible train station with operating elevators began wearing thin. It was definitely time to pursue the options available to me towards purchasing a van.  I had been missing out on so very much and I needed to move forward in my life.

 

After years of saving every penny that entered my pocket, I finally received the green light for modifications funding from the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission. It was time to purchase my van.  I bought a red Plymouth Voyager in June of 1994, and in a few months was driving on my own!

 

I no longer have to haul groceries home from the store in the pouring rain, losing half of them as they spill over the arms of my wheelchair.   I can drive my van home with as many bags as I want.  I do not have to struggle in 25 inches of snow when trying to get to work.  I now have my van to guide me wherever I want to go with ease.  I can travel to the most beautiful locations within the US for the very first time on my own.  Nobody will ever tell me that, “there isn’t time to stop.”  I am driving now and if want to stop, I am going to stop!  I could go on and on sharing the wonderful changes

that my new found independence allows but I am sure you get the picture.

 

I am so very thankful and appreciative of the people in my life that made it possible for me to get behind the wheel.  For starters, I thank my father for handling the constant wheelings and dealings between the car dealership and outside vendors.  He was very protective of my hard earned money and made sure that I got exactly what I was paying for and then some!

I thank Bob Sondheim at the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission for making sure that the funding was granted for the  modifications that allow me to operate my van.  Without my Dad or the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission,  I would not have had a van or modifications that would allow me to drive.

 

Last but not least, an enormous thank you goes to Jim Sanders at Automotive Innovations in Bridgewater, Massachusetts.  Jim and his wonderfully trained staff are responsible for building my van, putting every crucial piece of technology in its proper place and for making it operate with grace and efficiency. Automotive Innovations specializes in vehicle modifications and adaptive technology including high tech vans for physically challenged drivers. They are leaders in New England, known and respected for their quality, commitment and innovation. It’s the 90′s and technology is beyond our wildest dreams.  Automotive Innovations knows their stuff.

 

At first, I was intimidated by the electronic hand controls and the tiny steering wheel that I would drive with. I wondered, “will everything operate safely?” “Will my steering system fail to operate as I am driving down the highway?”  “What if my door jams and doesn’t allow the ramp to open, trapping me inside?”  These are a few of the questions that ran through my mind before Jim gave me a thorough explanation on all operation procedures and back up system functions.

 

Jim and his staff have been there for me from the get-go and I know they always will be.  I have called him on many occasions with questions and he was ready and willing to help me at a moments notice.   If it wasn’t for their high quality workmanship, I wouldn’t have the reliable form of transportation that I have today.  For that I will always be grateful.

 

Every time I get behind the wheel I am thankful that I have such an amazing form of independence to experience.  If independence is foreign to you, then I am sure you know where I am coming from.  If not, I ask that you appreciate the little things in life such as walking up steps and entering a public bathroom, finding it ready and willing to accept you.  Life should never be taken for granted.  It’s the little things in life that should be treasured because they can be taken away within an instant.  Even if it is as simple as driving down the street to pick up a cup of coffee!  Appreciate your freedom, I know I do!

Lori A. Frankian Boston, MA

 

Aging & Disability Resource Consortium

have a safe journey sign

Aging & Disability Resource Consortium

The Aging & Disability Resource Consortium (ADRC) is a partnership between a county’s elder service organizations, known as Aging Service Access Points (ASAPs) and an areas’ Independent Living Center serving people with disabilities. The ADRC enhances collaborations between elder and disability service providers, ensuring there’s no wrong door when an elder or person with a disability contacts one of our agencies for assistance and services. An ADRC is designed to assist individuals in need of long-term services and supports in making informed choices.

In Suffolk County, the ADRC is comprised of four ASAPs, Boston Senior Home Care, Central Boston Elder Services, Chelsea-Revere-Winthrop Elder Services, and Ethos — the areas AAA, the Boston Commission on Affairsof the Elderly — and the Boston Center for Independent Living (BCIL). In Metro Boston, the ADRC is comprised of BCIL and the ASAPs Minuteman Senior Services, Mystic Valley Elder Services, Somerville/Cambridge Elder Services and Springwell.

One critical new program the ADRC offers is Options Counseling, which provides seniors over 60 and people with disabilities of any age with the information they need on long-term services and supports in order to live independently in their community, regardless of disability or income. Options Counselors are trained to work with you, family members and/or significant others, to connect you to vital resources and services that fit your current situation and preferences and allow you to stay in your home.

Option Counselors advise people who are soon to be discharged from a hospital or rehab facility, have been admitted a long-term care facility following a hospital stay, are facing admission to or residing in a nursing facility, or when a family caregiver needs help to continue providing care in the community. An Options Counselor can help you develop your own personal long-term care plan and connect you to options and supports that help you remain in the community.

Options Counseling is a FREE service. The program is funded by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs and the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission and offered through ADRCs across the state.

Aging and Disability Resource Consortium ADRC Service Areas and Contact Information

Suffolk County ADRC

ADRC Coordinator: David Sternburg 617-338-6665 xt.223 dsternburg@bostoncil.org

Boston Center for Independent Living 617-338-6665

See Areas Served in Direct Services on web site.
Options Counselor: Rob Park 617-338-6665, xt.247 rpark@bostoncil.org

Boston Senior Home Care 617-451-6400

Charlestown, East Boston, South Boston, North End, West End, Beacon Hill, Downtown, Chinatown, North Dorchester, East Mattapan
Options Counselor: Carolyn O’Brien 617-960-6980 cobrien@bshcinfo.org

Central Boston Elder Services 617-277-7416

Allston, Brighton, Back Bay, South End, Roxbury, Dorchester, Jamaica Plain, Fenway, Mission Hill
Options Counselor: Neicey Skeens 617-277-7416 xt.259 HSkeens@centralboston.org

Chelsea-Revere-Winthrop Elder Services 617-884-2500

Chelsea, Revere, Winthrop
Options Counselor: Jessica Parow 617-884-2500 jparow@crwelderservices.org

Ethos 617-522-6700

Hyde Park, Jamaica Plain, Mattapan, Roslindale, West Roxbury
Options Counselor: Winsome Waldron 617-522-6700 xt.377 wwaldron@ethocare.org

Metro Boston ADRC

ADRC Consultant: Miranda Heibel 617-628-2601 x3079 m.heibel@eldercare.org

Boston Center for Independent Living 617-338-6665

See Areas Served in Direct Services on web site.
Options Counselor: Rob Park 617-338-6665, xt.247 rpark@bostoncil.org

Minuteman Senior Services 781-272-7177

Acton, Arlington, Bedford, Boxboro, Burlington, Carlisle, Concord, Harvard, Lexington, Lincoln, Littleton, Maynard, Stow, Wilmington, Winchester, Woburn elderinfo@minutemansenior.org

Mystic Valley Elder Services 781-324-7705

Everett, Malden, Medford, Melrose, North Reading, Reading, Stoneham, Wakefield

info@mves.org

Somerville-Cambridge Elder Services 617-628-2601

Cambridge, Somerville

info@eldercare.org

Springwell 617-926-4100

Belmont, Brookline, Needham, Newton, Waltham, Watertown, Wellesley, Weston

inforef@springwell.com

Paralyzed Veterans Racing Team: Ready for 2013

Beimfohr_Paralyzed Veterans racing

Dedicated to a season of continued growth in membership and educational efforts as well as abundant handcycle racing success, theParalyzed Veterans of America racing team is eager for the 2013 season to begin.

For the first time, a winter training camp will be held prior to the start of the racing season. A select group of members will meet for a week of twice daily stamina-building rides, strategy sessions and team bonding in Tampa, FL, before continuing on to the Melbourne Marathon to be held February 3, 2013, in Melbourne, FL.

Racing team coordinator Jody Shiflett expects the training camp to propel the team forward into the new season and plans to make the camp an annual event.

“Work and other personal obligations make training and racing a different priority for each individual,” Shiflett says. “But at this camp, it will be the focus for everyone.”

Shiflett is quick to point out that not all members can race at every event. About 30 times yearly, Paralyzed Veterans has members at different races around the United States. Because of time and financial constraints, most members primarily attend races near their homes. Only two or three times yearly will the entire team race together.

Paralyzed Veterans Racing experienced more than 50 percent membership growth in 2012 and now has a roster of 130 members. Shiflett contributes the growth rate to the hard work of many team members who volunteer their time to hold educational clinics and workshops, and do recruiting, fund raising and bike repair.

Though volunteering is common among team members, certain members stand out in this area. To acknowledge these individuals, their dedication and their efforts above and beyond the call of duty, Shiflett created the “A” Team, initially appointing the first 12 members himself. However, the following year Jody turned voting over to the team and made the position peer elected.

Paralyzed Veterans underwrites a small portion of team members’ travel expenses to attend racing events. “A” team members, in recognition of their volunteer work, are sometimes eligible for a few extra dollars to offset some of their out-of-pocket expenses. Shiflett states that the few extra dollars awarded the “A” team is only a token and comes nowhere near off-setting the personal investment these members have put forth.

The 2013 “A” Team members are:

Joseph Beimfohr
Alfredo De Los Santos
Will Groulx
Geoff Hopkins
Holly Koester
Carlos Moleda
Robert Puckett III
Matthew J. Robinson
Jeff Snover
David Swaim
Scott Sweet
Keith Winchell

Major races for the 2013 season include competitions in Greenville, SC; Anchorage, AK; and the cycling national championships in Chattanooga, TN. The complete racing schedule is available on the Paralyzed Veterans website at this link.

 

Hertz Supports Paralyzed Veterans of America Through the PGA Tour’s Greenbrier Classic and Hertz for Heroes Campaign

hertz supports paralyzed veterans of america and hertz for heroes

The Hertz Company raised $16,140 to support Paralyzed Veterans of America‘s Mission: ABLE campaign over the July fourth holiday weekend as part of the PGA Tour Greenbrier Classic and the Hertz for Heroes initiative.

“These funds are critical to help maintain the programs that help support paralyzed veterans and their families to live full and successful lives,” said David Zurfluh, member and National Vice President of Paralyzed Veterans. “Again, many thanks to Hertz for extending a helping hand to our disabled veterans this July 4th weekend.”

The initiative offered a charitable contribution to Paralyzed Veterans: $10 for every birdie, $50 for every eagle and $500 for every hole-in-one recorded during the 2013 Greenbrier Classic by PGA Tour professionals, of up to $20,000 through Sunday.

Greenbrier Classic professional golfers scored 1,494 birdies, 14 eagles and 1 hole-in-one, resulting in the $16,140 total donation from Hertz for Heroes.

“Events like these are a great way for us to tell our story and carry on the important work we do,” Zurfluh said. “This wouldn’t be possible without companies like Hertz Corporation.”

The Hertz for Heroes project was launched by Hertz employees with military backgrounds in 2011, when the company donated 40,000 free weekend rentals to military personnel returning home from overseas. The company has since joined the White House’s veterans hiring initiative and has launched a military hiring portal that enables veterans and their family members to view and apply for available Hertz jobs. To date, the company has hired more than 300 veterans.

“We are grateful for the dollars raised and the support of Hertz for Heroes,” Zurfluh said.

Learn more about Paralyzed Veterans of America

What is SpeedyTV? “the little man in the flying wheelchair,” is

What is SpeedyTV?

Paralyzed Veterans of America's Speedy logo

Speedy, “the little man in the flying wheelchair,” is Paralyzed Veterans of America’s national emblem, which came to life from a drawing of a Paralyzed Veterans of America member back in 1946.   Speedy is symbolic of energy, drive, happiness, admiration and guts!

Speedy TV is a way to catch up via video webcast on the latest event-specific information from Paralyzed Veterans of America. Via the links below, explore video from various Paralyzed Veterans events. The direct link to Speedy TV:www.pva.org/SpeedyTV.

Join us here at Speedy TV— your place for all the sights, sounds, interviews and exciting play-by-plays during the National Veterans Wheelchair Games!  View the flyer

Coming in July in this space: Speedy TV from the 33rd National Veterans Wheelchair Games from Tampa, FL!

2013 Paralyzed Veterans of America Awareness Month SpeedyTV at this link.

2012 National Veterans Wheelchair Games SpeedyTV at this link.

2012 Summit SpeedyTV at this link.

Adapting Motor Vehicles for People with disAbilities

newenglandwheelchairvan.com boston strong

Introduction

A Proven Process for Gaining Freedom on the Road

The introduction of new technology continues to broaden opportunities for people with disabilities to drive vehicles with adaptive devices. Taking advantage of these opportunities, however, can be time consuming and, sometimes, frustrating.

The information in this brochure is based on the experience of driver rehabilitation specialists and other professionals who work with individuals who require adaptive devices for their motor vehicles. It is centered around a proven process —evaluating your needs, selecting the right vehicle, choosing a qualified dealer to modify your vehicle, being trained, maintaining your vehicle — that can help you avoid costly mistakes when purchasing and modifying a vehicle with adaptive equipment.

Also included is general information on cost savings, licensing requirements, and organizations to contact for help. Although the brochure focuses on drivers of modified vehicles, each section contains important information for people who drive passengers with disabilities.

 


 

Investigate Cost Saving Opportunities &Licensing Requirements

Cost Saving Opportunities

The costs associated with modifying a vehicle vary greatly. A new vehicle modified with adaptive equipment can cost from $20,000 to $80,000. Therefore, whether you are modifying a vehicle you own or purchasing a new vehicle with adaptive equipment, it pays to investigate public and private opportunities for financial assistance.

There are programs that help pay part or all of the cost of vehicle modification, depending on the cause and nature of the disability. For information, contact your state’s Department of Vocational Rehabilitation or another agency that provides vocational services, and, if appropriate, the Department of Veterans Affairs. You can find phone numbers for these state and federal agencies in a local phone book. Also, consider the following.

  • Many nonprofit associations that advocate for individuals with disabilities have grant programs that help pay for adaptive devices.
  • If you have private health insurance or workers’ compensation, you may be covered for adaptive devices and vehicle modification. Check with your insurance carrier.
  • Many manufacturers have rebate or reimbursement plans for modified vehicles. When you are ready to make a purchase, find out if there is such a dealer in your area.
  • Some states waive the sales tax for adaptive devices if you have a doctor’s prescription for their use.
  • You may be eligible for savings when submitting your federal income tax return. Check with a qualified tax consultant to find out if the cost of your adaptive devices will help you qualify for a medical deduction.

Licensing Requirements

All states require a valid learner’s permit or driver’s license to receive an on–the–road evaluation. You cannot be denied the opportunity to apply for a permit or license because you have a disability. However, you may receive a restricted license, based on your use of adaptive devices.

 


 

Evaluate Your Needs

Driver rehabilitation specialists perform comprehensive evaluations to identify the adaptive equipment most suited to your needs. A complete evaluation includes vision screening and, in general, assesses:

  • Muscle strength, flexibility, and range of motion
  • Coordination and reaction time
  • Judgment and decision making abilities
  • Ability to drive with adaptive equipment

Upon completion of an evaluation, you should receive a report containing specific recommendations on driving requirements or restrictions, and a complete list of recommended vehicle modifications.

Finding a Qualified Evaluator

To find a qualified evaluator in your area, contact a local rehabilitation center or call the Association for Driver Rehabilitation Specialists (ADED). The phone number is in the resource section. The Association maintains a data base of certified driver rehabilitation specialists throughout the country. Your insurance company may pay for the evaluation. Find out if you need a physician’s prescription or other documen-tation to receive benefits.

Being Prepared for an Evaluation

Consult with your physician to make sure you are physically and psychologically prepared to drive. Being evaluated too soon after an injury or other trauma may indicate the need for adaptive equipment you will not need in the future. When going for an evaluation, bring any equipment you normally use, e.g., a walker or neck brace. Tell the evaluator if you are planning to modify your wheelchair or obtain a new one.

Evaluating Passengers with Disabilities

Evaluators also consult on compatibility and transportation safety issues for passengers with disabilities. They assess the type of seating needed and the person’s ability to exit and enter the vehicle. They provide advice on the purchase of modified vehicles and recommend appropriate wheelchair lifts or other equipment for a vehicle you own. If you have a child who requires a special type of safety seat, evaluators make sure the seat fits your child properly. They also make sure you can properly install the seat in your vehicle.

 


 

Select the Right Vehicle

Selecting a vehicle for modification requires collaboration among you, your evaluator, and a qualified vehicle modification dealer. Although the purchase or lease of a vehicle is your responsibility, making sure the vehicle can be properly modified is the responsibility of the vehicle modification dealer. Therefore, take the time to consult with a qualified dealer and your evaluator before making your final purchase. It will save you time and money. Be aware that you will need insurance while your vehicle is being modified, even though it is off the road.

The following questions can help with vehicle selection. They can also help determine if you can modify a vehicle you own.

  • Does the necessary adaptive equipment require a van, or will another passenger vehicle suffice?
  • Can the vehicle accommodate the equipment that needs to be installed?
  • Will there be enough space to accommodate your family or other passengers once the vehicle is modified?
  • Is there adequate parking space at home and at work for the vehicle and for loading/unloading a wheelchair?
  • Is there adequate parking space to maneuver if you use a walker?
  • What additional options are necessary for the safe operation of the vehicle?

If a third party is paying for the vehicle, adaptive devices, or modification costs, find out if there are any limitations or restrictions on what is covered. Always get a written statement on what a funding agency will pay before making your purchase.

 


 

Choose a Qualified Dealer to Modify Your Vehicle

Even a half inch change in the lowering of a van floor can affect a driver’s ability to use equipment or to have an unobstructed view of the road; so, take time to find a qualified dealer to modify your vehicle. Begin with a phone inquiry to find out about credentials, experience, and references. Ask questions about how they operate. Do they work with evaluators? Will they look at your vehicle before you purchase it? Do they require a prescription from a physician or other driver evaluation specialist? How long will it take before they can start work on your vehicle? Do they provide training on how to use the adaptive equipment?

If you are satisfied with the answers you receive, check references; then arrange to visit the dealer’s facility. Additional information to consider is listed below.

  • Are they members of the National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association (NMEDA) or another organization that has vehicle conversion standards?
  • What type of training has the staff received?
  • What type of warranty do they provide on their work?
  • Do they provide ongoing service and maintenance?
  • Do they stock replacement parts?

Once you are comfortable with the dealer’s qualifications, you will want to ask specific questions, such as:

  • How much will the modification cost?
  • Will they accept third party payment?
  • How long will it take to modify the vehicle?
  • Can the equipment be transferred to a new vehicle in the future?
  • Will they need to modify existing safety features to install the adaptive equipment?

While your vehicle is being modified, you will, most likely, need to be available for fittings. This avoids additional waiting time for adjustments once the equipment is fully installed. Without proper fittings you may have problems with the safe operation of the vehicle and have to go back for adjustments.

Some State Agencies specify the dealer you must use if you want reimbursement.

 


 

Obtain Training on the Use of New Equipment

Both new and experienced drivers need training on how to safely use new adaptive equipment. Your equipment dealer and evaluator should provide information and off-road instruction. You will also need to practice driving under the instruction of a qualified driving instructor until you both feel comfortable with your skills. Bring a family member or other significant person who drives to all your training sessions. It’s important to have someone else who can drive your vehicle in case of an emergency.

Some state vocational rehabilitation departments pay for driver training under specified circumstances. At a minimum, their staff can help you locate a qualified instructor. If your evaluator does not provide on-the-road instruction, ask him or her for a recommendation. You can also inquire at your local motor vehicle administration office.

 


 

Maintain Your Vehicle

Regular maintenance is important for keeping your vehicle and adaptive equipment safe and reliable. It may also be mandatory for compliance with the terms of your warranty. Some warranties specify a time period during which adaptive equipment must be inspected. These “check ups” for equipment may differ from those for your vehicle. Make sure you or your modifier submits all warranty cards for all equipment to ensure coverage and so manufacturers can contact you in case of a recall.

For additional copies of this brochure and other important vehicle safety information, you can contact DOT’s web site at www.nhtsa.dot.gov and the DOT Auto Safety Hotline: 888-DASH-2-DOT (888-327-4236).

 


 

Resources

The Association for Driver Rehabilitation Specialists (ADED)
2425 N. Center Street # 369, Hickory, NC 28601
(866) 672-9466
www.driver-ed.org
www.aded.net

National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association (NMEDA)
11211 N. Nebraska Ave., Suite A5, Tampa, FL 33612
(800) 833-0427 
www.nmeda.org

AAA
1000 AAA Drive, Heathrow, FL 32746-5063
(404) 444-7961
www.aaa.com

Department of Veteran Affairs
(800) 827-1000
www.va.gov

State Departments of Vocational Rehabilitation
Listed in telephone book.


The following manufacturers offer rebates or reimbursements on new vehicle modification.

Daimler Chrysler Corporation
(800) 255-9877
(TDD Users: (800) 922-3826)
www.automobility.daimlerchrysler.com

Ford Motor Company
(800) 952-2248
(TDD Users: (800) TDD-0312)
www.ford.com/mobilitymotoring

General Motors Corporation
(800) 323-9935
(TDD Users: (800) TDD-9935)
www.gmmobility.com

Saturn
(800) 553-6000, Prompt 3
(TDD Users: (800) 833-6000)
www.saturn.com

Volkswagen
(800) 822-8987
www.vw.com

Audi
(800) 822-2834
www.audiusa.com

ESPN, Ben Affleck To Honor father-son team Hoyt, Yes You Can

Team Hoyt

Actor Ben Affleck is set to present an award for perseverance to a father-son team who have competed together in more than 1,000 races despite the younger man’s severe disabilities.

Rick Hoyt, 51, has cerebral palsy and is unable to use his hands or legs. But with the help of a custom-made wheelchair steered by his father — Dick Hoyt, 73 — he’s blazed through finish lines at triathlons, marathons and other endurance events for over 30 years.

Now the duo, known as Team Hoyt, will be honored at the ESPYS, an awards show presented by ESPN highlighting the best in sports for the year. Affleck  a Boston, MA native  will present the Hoyts with the Jimmy V Perseverance Award at the event July 17, ESPN said.

The Hoyts had indicated that this year’s Boston Marathon would be their last. But after bombs exploded at the event when the men were just one mile shy of the finish line, they vowed to compete again next year. ESPN indicated that the Hoyts’ commitment to race again is testament to the pair’s “determination in the face of adversity.”

“Rick and I are grateful to be receiving this award,” said Dick Hoyt. “Our motto is ‘Yes You Can’ and we strive to always persevere even when others tell you that it cannot be done.”

Need help selling a wheelchair van in New England?

Toyota Sienna VMI Northstar wheelchair van at newenglandwheelchairvan.com

I want to sell my wheelchair van can you help? Yes we can!

We will buy your late model clean wheelchair van.

Need help selling your wheelchair van? We can help with that too.

Wheelchair Van Classifieds can offer a “for sale by owner” approach but, at the same time, do not afford a personal interaction with a trained mobility sales expert, we do.

 

Let us do all the hard work and sell your wheelchair vehicle for you through our New England network of sales professionals dedicated to ensuring people looking to buy handicap vans and adapted vehicles get something thats going to work for them.

Sure you can try and sell your used accessible vehicle in a online classifieds by creating an account and creating your classified ads listing.

VMi New England, Bridgewater, MA offers a mobility classifieds listing service for free on all vans we take on consignment to sell for you, in which we handle the sales process for your adapted vehicle. Learn more about having us sell your wheelchair van or other handicapped vehicles at our state of the art mobility center.

We accept all quality, serviceable mobility vehicles for consignment used Braun handicap van classifieds, pre-owned VMI mobility vans, and even used Rollx and AMS wheelchair vans, and all other brands of accessible vehicles.

We can get consumers financed that other wise would not be able to buy your van.

Have more questions? Give our mobility experts a call today at 508-607-6006 to ask more about our “consignment program” handicap minivans.

Find used handicap vans and accessible vehicles for sale in our online mobility classifieds. Shop our nationwide selection consignment vehicles sold through VMi New England. Included in our wheelchair van classifieds are adapted cars, trucks, SUVs, full-size vans, minivans, and other professionally modified vehicles for the disabled or elderly. Find pre-owned conversion minivans from, Braun Entervan (Braunability), Vantage Mobility (VMI) Northstar and Summit, Eldorado, Amerivan, IMS ramp vans and even AMS Vans, Rollx vans, and more.

Previous customers of VMi New England and Automotive Innovations receive a complimentary mobility equipment inspection and minor repairs free when contracting with us to sell you used wheelchair van

We are also happy to accept trade-ins toward the purchase of any new or used handicap accessible van.

 

Contact us to take advantage of our huge world wide network of people looking to buy handicap vans.

New England Regional Spinal Cord Injury Center

new england regional spinal cord injury center http://newenglandwheelchairvan.com/

The New England Regional Spinal Cord Injury Center (NERSCIC) has developed a long and distinguished history of care, research, education, and service to people with spinal cord injury (SCI) in the New England region.  NERSCIC Network headquarters is located at the Boston University Medical Campus, with Network members Gaylord Hospital and Hospital for Special Care located in CT.

The NERSCIC Network serves as an advocate and resource for patients; their families, friends, and caregivers; and health care professionals throughout New England.  Our goal is to improve the health and function of people with SCI throughout the lifespan through innovative science and technology in three areas:

1. Consumer-focused Rehabilitation Researchwhich focuses on topics for people with SCI, such as health care self advocacy training, better ways to measure functioning, and which wheelchairs have the most breakdowns.  Learn more about how to participate in studies.

2. Comprehensive, State-of-the-Art Care

  • NERSCIC offers comprehensive inpatient and outpatient SCI care available through Gaylord Hospital and the Hospital for Special Care in CT.
  • NERSCIC is leading the development and dissemination of a uniform New England Standard of Care (NESoC) for SCI, a first-ever collaborative effort among area facilities with SCI expertise.  Its goal is to enhance learning opportunities for professionals and ensure that all people receive the same level of care throughout New England.

3.  Education and Collaboration

  • In 2012, NERSCIC unveiled a new Consumer Education Program called “Knowledge in Motion,”  in partnership with Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital and modeled after the Stepping Forward- Staying Informed program pioneered by NERSCIC.
  • The Rehabilitation Research Roundtable joins together leaders of the local SCI community to collaborate on a common research and corresponding service and advocacy agenda.

spinal cord Injury and driving in new england

Screen Shot 2013-07-06 at 2.08.45 PM
Spinal Cord Injury
After a spinal cord injury has occurred, a person is no longer able to drive an automobile in the normal manner. However, there are several types of adaptive mobility equipment and vehicle modifications that can allow an individual with a spinal cord injury to drive. Depending on the level of injury and functional ability, either a sedan or van may be an appropriate vehicle choice.The following are considerations for selecting a vehicle:

Driving a sedan: When considering the use of a sedan, the individual must be able to do the following:

  • Lock and Unlock the door
  • Open and close the door
  • Transfer to and from the wheelchair
  • Store and retrieve the wheelchair (either independently or with a wheelchair loading device)

Since characteristics and dimensions of vehicles vary, it is important that the individual performs these functions in the vehicle being considered prior to purchase. A driver rehabilitation specialist can provide recommendations for sedan selection.

Driving a van: If an individual is unable to drive a sedan, there are several options available for driving a van. Specialized modifications can allow a person to transfer to the driver seat or to drive from the wheelchair.

There are several levels of driving control technology to compensate for the loss of strength and/or range of motion. Some of these include:

Adaptive mobility equipment and vehicle modifications for wheelchair access are available for some full-size and mini vans; however, all vans are not suitable for modifications. We can assist in making the correct van choice and can provide a comprehensive evaluation to determine a persons ability to drive.

If you or those that drive with you notice any of the above warning signs and need a driving evaluation, give us a call at 508-697-6006 and we can, help you with with knowledge about medical conditions, and help with a comprehensive evaluation and determine your ability to drive. 

  • Visual Perception
  • Functional Ability
  • Reaction Time
  • Behind-the-wheel evaluation

This Fourth Of July, Show Veterans Your Gratitude

Show Veterans Your Gratitude mobility center bridgewater, ma newenglandwheelchairvan.com

Although we should show our gratitude every chance we get, the Fourth of July is an especially profound time to thank the nation’s military community for their sacrifices and for our freedom.

And our current and ongoing support is crucial, given statistics such as the fact that the the vet unemployment rate is hovering at 6.6 percent .

Show your patriotism this Fourth of July by checking out the organizations below and supporting vets in need:

Unemployed Vets
Hire Heroes USA
Hire Heroes USA helps train and advise veterans in order to help them find jobs. The organization reports that it finds nine veterans a job each week. This July 4th – with the help of MedAssets, a health care management company – golfer Carl Meyers will host and play in the the 6th annual “100 Holes For Our Heroes” golf tournament to raise funds and awareness for Hire Heroes USA. To learn more about how you can help out, click here.

Military Families 
National Military Families Association
NMFA is a nonprofit committed to providing military service members and their families with much-needed financial and educational support. This Independence Day, the organization is encouraging Americans to send eCards to military families commemorating them on their service and sacrifice. On the Fourth of July, TravelCenters of America will also be hosting a donation drive to benefit the National Military Family Association’s Operation Purple Program. To learn more about how you can help out, click here.

Homeless Vets:
The National Coalition for Homeless Veterans
NCHV is a nonprofit that helps fund and offer administrative support for various local, state, and federal agencies in order to provide veterans with housing, food, health services, and employment opportunities. To learn more about how you can help out, click here.

Vets Struggling With Mental Health Issues
Veterans Crisis Line
With about 22 veteran suicides occurring each day, it is important that veterans receive adequate mental health and support services. The Veterans Crisis Line provides veterans with private 24-hour hotlines, online chatrooms, and text services to connect them to VA professionals who will consult them and sometimes perform suicide rescues. To learn more about how you can help out, click here.

Military Spouses
Hearts of Valor (formerly known as Wounded Warrior Wives)
This organization sponsors retreats for the spouses of wounded veterans to both relax and also discuss the challenges that they experience caring for their significant other.To learn more about how you can help out, click here.

Young Vets
Iraq And Afghanistan Veterans Of America
IAVA empowers and improves the lives of veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan with programs that support their health care, employment, and educational needs. To learn more about how you can help out, click here.

Vets With Disabilities
Disabled American Veterans
DAV employs hundreds of service officers nationwide to help struggling veterans receive the care and benefits they deserve from various government agencies – most notably the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. To learn more about how you can help out, click here.

Declare Your Independence on the 4th of July with a Wheelchair-Accessible Vehicle

  • Wheelchair Van VMi New England Boston Strong
  • Learn more about how to pick the right wheelchair-accessible vehicle that meets your needs.
  • Take a look inside the latest minivans, and other accessible vehicles like a pickup truck, motorcycle or snowmobile.
  • Buy new? Buy used? Convert your current vehicle? Here, we provide some factors to consider before making your decision.

Freedom. That’s what it’s all about, isn’t it? A wheelchair shouldn’t be a barrier to getting out and about, whether for work, day-to-day living or pleasure.

“we will always do all we can to deliver the driving freedom most take for granted to someone in a wheelchair, we are going to change the world one person on at a time” , -Jim Sanders 7/4/1988

Finding the right vehicle means analyzing your needs. Do you want to ride in your wheelchair or transfer to the vehicle’s seat? Will you be the driver or the passenger? If your muscle weakness is still progressing, how will your accessibility needs change down the line — and how can you accommodate them now?

What kind of vehicle do you want: car, minivan, van, truck, SUV or motorcycle? New or used? After-market conversion or built for accessibility from the start? Side or rear entry?

A great place to start answering questions is at the website for Vmi New England

The website is a treasure trove of tips for finding the right vehicle.

For an in-depth look into the life of Ralph Braun, founder and CEO of The Braun Corporation, read CEO with SMA Brings Mobility to All . Learn how he turned his scooter and modified van designs into a multimillion-dollar business — all while battling spinal muscular atrophy.

 

 

Braun Wheelchair Van Mobility Center vmienwenglan.com Boston Strong

Of course, in purchasing a vehicle, monetary concerns always come into play. The New England Mobility Center site offers various directions to take in finding government funding and public assistance. You’ll also find tips on buying auto insurance, numerous blogs on accessible-vehicle-related subjects and info on many travel accessories to make life easier on the road.

Because of the tremendous number of variables in the custom fitment for each persons specific needs, it’s not possible to give exact prices for the minivans featured. However, we can provide some figures that will give you a ballpark idea of accessible vehicle pricing.

  • New side-entry converted minivans range from around $48,000 to $75,000.
  • New rear-entry converted minivans with manually operated fold-out ramps start in the low $40,000s.
  • You can find 3-year-old minivans with brand-new conversions starting in the low $30,000s.

For those with severe muscle weakness who want to drive their vehicle themselves, certified driver rehabilitation specialists (CDRS) can evaluate your needs at the Bridgewater, MA Mobility Center, and provide a prescription for adapted driving equipment and driver training.  (For more on this topic, contact us at 508-697-6006).

As you’ll discover, the scope of accessible vehicles is very broad indeed. Here’s a sampler of the myriad options currently available in the world of wheelchair-accessible vehicles and conversion equipment.

MinivansBraunAbility’s Chrysler Entervan features flexible floor plans
For easier boarding, the Entervan has an integrated “kneeling” system; while the door is opening, the rear suspension is lowered, reducing the slope of the ramp. To learn more, call 508-697-6006 .Because wheelchair transportation requirements can change over time, BraunAbility enables buyers to easily configure the floor plan of its Chrysler Entervan. Whether you want to be the driver or the front-seat passenger, removing the appropriate seat is literally a snap: Unlock the seat base and roll the entire seat out of the van.
VMI’s Honda Odyssey Northstar promotes easy entry

 

Wheelchair Van bridgewater, ma newenglandwheelchairvan.com boston

In the side-entry, lowered-floor Honda Odyssey Northstar conversion by VMI, a remote control triggers the PowerKneel System, lowering the vehicle and activating a power ramp that telescopes out from within the interior floor.

The lower ramp offers a gentler angle, and the unrestricted entry means better maneuverability once inside.

VMI also offers the Summit accessible Toyota van conversion featuring a power fold-out, heavy-duty ramp system with an anti-rattle mechanism. It also has the power kneeling feature. To learn more, call 508-697-6006

.2013 Toyota Sienna VMI Summit Silver VMi New England Wheelchair Van Boston

Consider a rear entry, says Jim Sanders
Although rear-entry vehicles don’t allow wheelchair users to park in the driver or front-passenger locations, Jim’s vision has always been to offer as many options possible including optional swiveling driver or front-passenger seat that may facilitate transferring from the wheelchair. (For more on the rear- versus side-entry question, see them at, the Bridgewater, MA Mobility Center.) To learn more, call 508-697-6006 .Believing that entering and exiting the van through the back sometimes avoids  barriers, Our viewpoint and vision has always been to offer as many options as is practical. Rear-entry, lowered-floor modification converts Chrysler, Ford, GM, Honda and Toyota minivans. An automatic remote-control option can even activate the ramp and door. This vision and technology of lowering the vehicle closer to the ground and the ramp to a more comfortable angle for wheelchair access.

 

‘A mobility concept vehicle’ starts out as a accessible ground up conversion; that can even go green
A car or minivan hybrid concept vehicle can be designed custom for you from the ground up with safety and accessibility as its top priority.

mobility concept vehicle mobility center bridgewater, ma boston strong

Rental vehicles New locations are being added, before your next trip or give us a call to learn more at 508-697-6006. It’s may even be possible to rent a Rollx wheelchair-accessible Dodge or Chrysler minivan at selected airports around the country. Someone even told us Thrifty Car Rental, Dollar Rent-a-Car or Payless Car Rental companies were thinking about offer accessible vans at airports like T.F. Green airport 2000 Post Rd, Warwick, RI 02886, Manchester–Boston Regional Airport 1 Airport Rd, Manchester, NH 03103, Logan International Airport 1 Harborside Dr, Boston, MA 02128
Cars and SUV’s Sport an attitude with a flair for the freedom to have different concept vehicles built with optional Motors depending on your needs a Scion xB might even work.If you’re just not the minivan type, consider the freedom of a concept vehicle, Want a custom sporty wheelchair-accessible vehicle? Click the remote: Simultaneously, the driver’s door swings open, the rear driver-side door gull-wings up and the ramp unfolds, ready for you to maneuver your wheelchair into driving position.

 

A similar conversion can be configured on the passenger side. Or if rear entry suits your needs, we offer you the freedom to pick a model that work best for you. Prices range from the low $30,000s for a manual rear-entry model to the low $500,000s for a one off concept vehicle with automatic side-entry. To learn more, call 508-697-6006
.

Hand controls and footless driving solutions
Systems from mechanical to servo actuated can be installed on most cars with automatic transmissions. The accelerator input can mounted within easy reach of the vehicle’s standard steering wheel, with the controls just inches away on either the right or left. Smoothly accelerate the vehicle remotely without use of your feel, designed to make hands only driving safe and easy.Depending on the make and model of your vehicle, installed prices start around $1,200, additionally we offer transportation of the vehicle to and from our mobility center. To learn more, call 508-697-6006
Buying used AMS pre-owned van might even be considered.Resale on them is typically incredibly low and these can be a ok deal if your able to bring it to a qualified mobility center to ensure it is in safe and working condition.

AMS pre-owned van bridgewater, ma newenglandwheelchairvan.com

There’s no getting around the fact that wheelchair vans are expensive; retrofitting new vans with accessibility equipment doesn’t come cheap. One way to cut costs is to buy a used van to avoid the  depreciation that happens when buying new.VMi New England offers many pre-owned vans outfitted with their new conversion equipment which can save buyers as much as $15,000 to $20,000.

Or, if you already have a fairly new Chrysler, Dodge or Volkswagen van, they may be able to convert it for you. Rear-entry conversions start at around $13,000, while side-entry conversions start at around $22,000, not including the price of the vehicle. To learn more, call 508-697-6006.

There are many grey market conversion vans available to you via the internet, ebay and private parties.

Many of these vehicles are being sold by direct marketing companies or individuals who bought them via the internet or ebay only to find out there were many problems with the van, it was unsafe and or wouldn’t work for there needs.

So in turn they are for sale again for what appears to be a great deal.

I wish i had a dollar for every customer who brought a “internet deal”, “used car dealer van”, “ebay wheelchair van deal” into our facility wanting to know what we could do to make it work for them.

Only to hear, i’m very sorry you didn’t visit with us before you purchased this van that your family member or friend in the wheelchair will not fit into the van.

Motorcycles

When it comes to motorcycles Jim Sanders has and will always promote accessible motorcycles and his personal belief that they offer the ultimate freedom when it comes to travel (unless it’s snowing in which case we need to talk about snowmobiles)

If you can operate a manual wheelchair, you may be able to drive a wheelchair-accessible motorcycle, says Sanders. Want a touring bike, a BMW, a KTM or how about a dirt bike. A remote-controlled drop-down ramp at the rear of the vehicle can be up fitted  allowing a rider to pull his or her chair into position, secure it with a push-button docking system, and ride off — no transferring necessary.

 

Bikes featuring a powerful BMW 1170 cc engine, a six-speed, two-button, thumb-operated gear shifter, and a rear-wheel-drive differential can be up fitted . Want a bike with a reverse gear for easier parking and maneuvering? To learn more, call 508-697-6006. If you can operate a manual wheelchair, you maybe able to drive a wheelchair-accessible motorcycle, says Sanders.

A remote-controlled drop-down ramp at the rear of the vehicle allows a rider to pull his or her chair into position, secure it with a push-button docking system, and ride off — no transferring necessary.

SUVs and trucks 

ryno wheelchair pick up truck bridgewater, ma boston, ma  newenglandwheelchairvan.com

A Stow-Away lift puts you inside

Bruno doesn’t sell wheelchair-accessible vehicles, but they do offer products that can be up fit  into vehicles.

Known for their home stair lifts and attachable vehicle lifts for transporting wheelchairs and scooters, they also make an add-on mechanism that may allow you to transfer you from a wheelchair up into the seat of a high-profile SUV or pickup.

 

Ryno no-transfer conversion for pickups 

Being a wheelchair user doesn’t mean you have to give up using a pickup truck. VMi New England has been offering pick up truck conversions for over 10 years allowing either driver-side or passenger-side entry into the cab of a GMC Sierra or Chevy Silverado without ever having to transfer out of the wheelchair.

When activated with the remote control, the door opens from the cab, then the lift platform deploys which rests flat on the ground. The wheelchair user backs onto the platform, which then elevates up and into the cab as the door slides back into the closed position.

To learn more, call 508-697-6006.

 

Logan International Airport
General Edward Lawrence Logan International Airport is located in the East Boston neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts, US. It covers 2,384 acres, has six runways, and employs an estimated 16,000 people.Wikipedia
Code: BOS
Elevation: 19′ 0″ (5.80 m)
Address: 1 Harborside Dr, Boston, MA 02128
Phone: (800) 235-6426
Manchester–Boston Regional Airport
Manchester–Boston Regional Airport, commonly referred to simply as “Manchester Airport,” is a public airport located three miles south of the central business district of Manchester, New Hampshire on … Wikipedia
Code: MHT
Elevation: 266′ (81 m)
Address: 1 Airport Rd, Manchester, NH 03103
Phone: (603) 624-6539
T. F. Green Airport
T. F. Green Airport, also known as Theodore Francis Green Memorial State Airport, is a public airport located in Warwick, six miles south of Providence, in Kent County, Rhode Island, USA. Wikipedia
Code: PVD
Elevation: 55′ (17 m)
Address: 2000 Post Rd, Warwick, RI 02886
Phone: (888) 268-7222
Hours:

Open all.  –  See all
Conquest
conquest [ˈkɒnkwɛst ˈkɒŋ-]

n

1. the act or an instance of conquering or the state of having been conquered; victory
2. a person, thing, etc., that has been conquered or won
3. the act or art of gaining a person’s compliance, love, etc., by seduction or force of personality
4. a person, whose compliance, love, etc., has been won over by seduction or force of personality

 

 

Funding Resources for Special Needs and Adaptive Equipment

Funding Resources for Special Needs and Adaptive Equipment


(800) 722-WISH (9474)
www.wish.org
The Make-A-Wish Foundation® has enriched the lives of children with life-threatening medical conditions through its wish-granting work. The Foundation’s mission reflects the life-changing impact that a Make-A-Wish® experience has on children, families, referral sources, donors, sponsors and entire communities.


(636) 227-2339
www.afastl.org
ACTION FOR AUTISM helps families attain the care, treatment, and educational support they may not otherwise be able to receive. Funds assist with cost of schooling, physical, occupational, and speech therapies; provide care and support for children and families; help parents learn how to better support and teach their child; and also help families attain other services specific to the needs of their child.


(217) 895-2341
www.cnhinc.org
Camp New Hope, Inc. offers summer camp and year-round respite programs for children with developmental disabilities.

Charles N. Gorham Memorial Fund
(815) 394-4616
Charles N. Gorham Memorial Fund support only disabled children under the age of 15 years who reside in Winnebago County, Illinois.


(800) 323-WISH (3474)
www.childrenswish.org
Since its inception, Children’s Wish Foundation has continued to expand its programs to enhance the lives of children with life-threatening illnesses. Recognizing our families’ needs outside of the scope of wish fulfillment, we stepped up our commitment to the children by developing a hospital enrichment program wherein we place educational and entertainment materials in children’s hospitals throughout the world. We also created a Family Focus program that allows our Wish Families a respite from hospital or treatment life. Children’s Wish Foundation is dedicated to bringing joy and happiness to children with life-threatening illness around the world. This dedication has created memorable experiences in 53 countries.


(302) 454-2730
www.blue-gold.org
Delaware Foundation Reaching Citizens with Intellectual Disabilities is a well-respected Delaware foundation dedicated to raising funds and consciousness in support of programs that enrich the lives of Delawareans with intellectual disabilities. Established in 1956, the private, nonprofit organization is dedicated to identifying and funding programs based on community need.


(516) 377-1605
www.dcrf.com
Disabled Children’s Relief Fund provides disabled children with assistance to obtain wheelchairs, orthopedic braces, walkers, lifts, hearing aids, eyeglasses, medical equipment, physical therapy, surgery. Blind, Deaf, Amputees, and children with Cerebral Palsy, Muscular Dystrophy, Spastic Quadriplegia, Encephalitis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Spina Bifida, Down’s Syndrome, and other disabilities receive assistance.

Division of Specialized Care for Children
(800) 924-0623
internet.dscc.uic.edu
Division of Specialized Care for Children offers care coordination and cost-supported diagnosis and treatment for children with chronic health impairments determined eligible for program support.


(800) 221-6827
www.easterseals.com
Easter Seals Disability Services offers help, hope and answers to more than a million children and adults living with autism and other disabilities or special needs and their families each year. Services and support are provided through a network of more than 550 sites in the U.S. and through Ability First Australia. Each center provides exceptional services that are individualized, innovative, family-focused and tailored to meet specific needs of the particular community served.


(773) 755-4700
www.elks.org
Elks is a fraternal order with nearly a million members and a 141-year history, a network of more than 2000 lodges in communities all over the country, a generous charitable foundation that each year gives millions in scholarships, an inspiration to youth, a friend to veterans and more. To inculcate the principles of Charity, Justice, Brotherly Love and Fidelity; to recognize a belief in God; to promote the welfare and enhance the happiness of its Members; to quicken the spirit of American patriotism; to cultivate good fellowship; to perpetuate itself as a fraternal organization, and to provide for its government, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks of the United States of America will serve the people and communities through benevolent programs, demonstrating that Elks Care and Elks Share.


(816) 201-1569
www.cerner.com/firsthand/
First Hand Foundation is a nonprofit organization that helps children with health-related needs when insurance and other financial resources have been exhausted. Our mission is to directly impact the health status of a young life. Since our inception in 1995, First Hand has assisted more than 93,000 children in 73 countries around the world.

George S. Weeks Trust c/o Bank One Trust Co., N.A.
P.O. Box 1308
Milwaukee, WI 53201Financial assestance to needy, legally blind individuals of Fayette and Bourbon Counties, KY, for equipment, supplies, and training.


(847) 624-LEXI (5394)
www.helpingfromheaven.org
Helping From Heaven – The Lexi Kazian Foundation is a non-profit foundation dedicated to improving the comfort and quality of life for children with special needs. This is accomplised by providing education, therapy and playground equipment, therapy toys, resources and scholarships for families and therapists in need of financial assistance and/or community support.


(217) 522-7985
www.iltech.org
The Illinois Assistive Technology Program (IATP) is a statewide, not-for-profit agency, in our twentieth year of service. Our mission is to enable people with disabilities so they can fully participate in all aspects of life. We believe disability is a natural part of the human experience and in no way diminishes a person’s right.


(800) 272-0074
www.illinois-elks.org
The Illinois Elks Children’s Care Corporation program generates direct assistance to physically challenged children and scholarship assistance to physical/occupational therapy students in Illinois. The program assists any child under the age of 21 who is a legal resident of the State of Illinois with medical assistance, as long as it falls within the IECCC scope and guidelines.


(217) 744-7777
www.silcofillinois.org
Illinois Youth with Disabilities Leadership Summit assists youths who wish to apply should have a disability, be between the ages of 17-24, live in Illinois and have a strong desire to learn and grow as a leader. This Summit will empower young leaders to learn from each other and from successful adults with disabilities who are recognized leaders and role models.


(866) 224-1197
www.indianachildrenswishfund.org
Founded in 1984, Indiana Children’s Wish Fund is the only wish granting organization in the State of Indiana accredited by and a member of the “Association of Wish Granting Organizations”. We are not affiliated with, or a part of, any national or other wish granting group. Indiana Children’s Wish Fund (ICWF) grants the wishes of only Indiana children between the ages of 3-18 who have been diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. The average cost of a wish is $5,500 and funding is made possible through the support of corporate donations, individuals, and fundraising events.


(818) 707-9707
www.joniandfriends.org
The Joni and Friends International Disability Center has a Wheels for the World program that provides wheelchairs to children and adults affected by disability worldwide. 21 offices nationwide. International offices in Europe, Pacific Rim, Africa and Asia.


(888) 918-9004
www.kidswishnetwork.org
Since 1997, Kids Wish Network has been making dreams come true for thousands of children all over the country. The charity started out with the single purpose of granting wishes to children suffering with life-threatening conditions. Since then we have created numerous programs benefiting kids nationwide. The catalyst for launching these programs began when it became clear to us that the children we serve demonstrated needs above and beyond the extent of wishes.


(800) 549-2647
www.sites.kiwanis.org
Kiwanis International was founded in 1915 in Detroit, Michigan. In the early years, members focused on business networking. In 1916, Kiwanis became an international organization with the creation of the Kiwanis Club of Hamilton, Ontario. In 1919, the organization changed its focus to service. By 1962, worldwide expansion was approved. In 1987, women officially were allowed into the membership.

The Knights of Columbus organization was formed in 1882 to render financial aid to members and their families. Mutual aid and assistance are offered to sick, disabled and needy members and their families. Social and intellectual fellowship is promoted among members and their families through educational, charitable, religious, social welfare, war relief and public relief works. The Knights of Columbus has grown from several members in one council to more than 13,000 councils and 1.7 million members throughout the United States, Canada, the Philippines, Mexico, Poland, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Panama, the Bahamas, the Virgin Islands, Cuba, Guatemala, Guam and Saipan.


(888) ALS-1107
www.lesturnerals.org
The Les Turner ALS Foundation is the only independent publicly supported non-profit organization in the Chicago-area devoted solely to the treatment and elimination of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), better known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. The Foundation’s programs are available to all ALS patients and caregivers, regardless of where they receive their medical care.

Louis S. Oppenheim Trust
(309) 655-5385
Medical and living expenses to financially needy, blind residents of Peoria County, IL.


(866) 583-2392
www.mofirststeps.com
Missouri First Steps offers coordinated services and assistance to young children with special needs and their families. First Steps is designed for children, birth to age 3, who have delayed development or diagnosed conditions that are associated with developmental disabilities.


(317) 249-8488
www.mdff.org
Muscular Dystrophy Family Foundation’s No Boundries exists to provide resources, services, and adaptive equipment to enable patients with muscular dystrophy and their family members to live independent and productive lives.


(800) 344-4867
www.nationalmssociety.org
The National Multiple Sclerosis Society’s Direct Assistance program relieves some of the financial burden that comes with purchasing the goods and services needed to manage MS when other resources (private insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, or other personal/community resources) aren’t available. The Society helps people affected by MS by funding cutting-edge research, driving change through advocacy, facilitating professional education, and providing programs and services that help people with MS and their families move their lives forward.


(858) 576-0590
www.resthavenchf.org
Rest Haven Children’s Help Fund is a California 501 c (3) nonprofit corporation dedicated to addressing the health needs of children. Rest Haven’s mission is to provide funds for health related services for children in San Diego and Imperial counties when no other funds are available. To fulfill this mission Rest Haven Children’s Health Fund provides one time or short term funding for health related needs for individual children who meet our eligibility requirements. Funds are also provided to assist health care development and to purchase needed services.

Scott Rose Foundation, Inc.
(606) 862-4221
Contact: Lawrence Kuhl, Treas.
P.O. Box 5001
London, KY 40745-5001Support only to disabled, disadvantaged young residents of southeastern KY.


(813) 281-0300
www.shrinershq.org
Shriners Hospitals for Children® is a health care system of 22 hospitals dedicated to improving the lives of children by providing specialty pediatric care, innovative research and outstanding teaching programs. Every year, Shriners Hospitals for Children® provides care for thousands of kids with orthopaedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries, and cleft lip and palate, in a family-centered environment regardless of the patients’ ability to pay. It’s how Shriners Hospitals for Children® has been Changing the World through Caring for Kids since 1922.


(212) 268-5999
www.skipofny.org
SKIP of New York is the way home for chronically ill and developmentally disabled children. Each child is partnered with a service coordinator and a supervisor. Each service coordinator supports about 20-25 families per month. Those families can be with them for a short period of time or for a lifetime. They are called upon to reach out and assist with every aspect of the child’s life. Service coordinators are involved with educational systems, medical emergencies, appeals processes, anything and everything that touches a family’s life.


(309) 235-2385
www.cisnap.org
The Special Needs Assistance Program (SNAP) provides specialized equipment, services, and education for children with special needs and their families in order to promote independence and quality of life. In order to be considered for SNAP’s assistance, a potential candidate must be between the ages of 3 and 21 with a diagnosed physical or cognitive disability. Priority attention is applied to applicants with a low income status.


(215) 396-4770
www.sunshinefoundation.org
Sunshine Foundation’s sole purpose is to answer the dreams of chronically ill, seriously ill, physically challenged and abused children, ages three to eighteen, whose families cannot fulfill their requests due to the financial strain that child’s illness may cause. Sunshine’s mission is to answer the dreams of chronically ill, seriously ill, physically challenged and abused children between the ages of 3 and 18. All children need something to believe in, to know dreams can come true. Whether the dream is a visit with a celebrity hero, a family outing, a trip to Orlando, or a special gift, Sunshine Foundation has granted over 34,500 dreams to these special children. Sunshine Foundation, the original wish-granting organization, is one of the few charities that makes dreams come true not only terminally ill children, but chronically ill and abused children as well.


(850) 224-4493
www.abletrust.org
The Able Trust grant program’s goal is to provide funds to qualifying organizations to assist individuals with disabilities gain competitive employment of their choice in their community. The Able Trust recognizes the great diversity of people across the state of Florida and is fully committed to providing grant funding opportunities that serve different disability populations in both Florida’s urban and rural areas.


(561) 391-7601
www.oandp.com
The Barr Foundation is a non-profit organization established in 1992 to assist amputees with prosthetic rehabilitation. Our mission is to advance education and improve community support for amputees of the world. The Barr Foundation strives to improve the amputee’s quality of life through access to proper prosthetic care and by encouraging improvements in the care system.


(502) 561-3001
www.dreamfactoryinc.org
The Dream Factory is the only children’s wish-granting organization that does not limit its mission to children who have life-threatening illness. The organization believes children with chronic illnesses and disorders also suffer from substantial emotional and physical pain. We strive to provide hope and relief from the trauma and corresponding stress and depression that both the children and their families can endure on a day-to-day basis. Doctors agree that providing a dream can improve the quality of life for these children and extend the life of a critically ill child.


(212) 977-9474
www.martylyonsfoundation.org
The Marty Lyons Foundation’s Wish program for any child between the ages of three (3) and seventeen (17) inclusive who has been diagnosed as having a terminal or life threatening illness by their attending physician and confirmed by the Foundation’s medical advisors shall be eligible. OPerates 9 chapters throughout the U.S.


(718) 803-3782
www.spinalcord.org
Founded in 1948, the National Spinal Cord Injury Association is the nation’s oldest and largest civilian organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for hundreds of thousands of Americans living with the results of spinal cord injury and disease (SCI/D) and their families. This number grows by thirty newly-injured people each day.


(248) 601-9474
www.rainbowwishconnection.org
The mission of The Rainbow Connection is to grant wishes to Michigan children with life threatening or terminal illnesses. A child must be between the ages of 2 ½ and 18 years old and be diagnosed with a life threatening illness. A licensed physician will verify the illness and refer the child for a wish. The child must not have received a wish previously from any wish-granting organization. The child must lives in the state of Michigan.


(617) 619-8257
www.travisroyfoundation.org
The Travis Roy Foundation is dedicated to enhancing the life of spinal cord injured individuals and families by providing adaptive equipment and to finding a cure through increased funding of research, resulting in self-reliance and the ability to be as independent as possible.


www.usvariety.org
Variety Club has been helping children in need since 1927, and it all begins with people like you. At the heart of Variety’s achievements are the remarkable contributions of people in the community, and it is only through their time and effort that we are able to do so much for special children everywhere. Variety’s impact is felt year round in the lives of children of each community where we have a local chapter. Each Board of Directors is made up of altruistic business men and women working at the grassroots level to bring money and assistance where it is needed the most. Because each chapter is the best judge of the needs in its own community, Variety encourages local chapters to create their own fundraising events and decide how to spend the money raised. info@usvariety.orgThe U.S chapters of Variety – The Children’s Charity are a multi-million dollar philanthropic organization with locations throughout the United States. Starting with a baby left on the doorsteps of a movie theater in 1928, we have continued to be a group of local business men and women, many of whom hail from the theater and movie business, reaching out to children in need. Today, through the efforts of our enthusiastic volunteers and generous corporate contributors, we remain true to our heritage by bringing children real, tangible help. Over 26 locations throughout the U.S.


(503) 257-1401
www.wheeltowalk.com
The Wheel to Walk Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to making a difference in the lives of children age 21 and younger with special needs. We are a 100 percent volunteer organization with no paid employees. We help children who experience difficulty obtaining funding from their insurance companies. To date, we have helped over 625 children obtain essential equipment or services that they needed to make their day to day lives just a little easier. If you need financial assistance with anything from leg braces, bath chairs, gait trainers to therapy tricycles and wheelchairs, please contact us at the phone number on the left or email us so we can email you an application.


www.heronetwork.com
The Hero Network is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt non-profit organization that seeks to supports the community of individuals working online who grant the needs and wants of others making a wish. We believe that no wish is too large, no hero is too small and that everyone can become a hero.


(800) 821-6805
www.wishuponastar.org
Wish Upon A Star is a non-profit, law enforcement effort designed to grant the wishes of children afflicted with high-risk and life threatening illnesses. Our services are available to children throughout the state of California, ages 3 through 18 years. We have granted over 1800 wishes in our 26 years of service.


www.zanesfoundation.org
The mission of Zane’s Foundation Inc. is to provide financial support to families of special needs children through funds designated for respite care, therapies, or other assistive equipment. Zane’s Foundation will help families attain some of those unique things that the special needs child should have to allow for a more productive life. Through fund-raising efforts and grants, Zane’s Foundation will provide financial assistance to families. Funding for families with special needs children is the cornerstone of Zane’s Foundation.