People exercising.

Wellness Edge awards grants to local communities!

The University of Kentucky Human Development Institute’s Kentucky Inclusive Health Collaborative has awarded grants through Wellness Edge. This program aims to improve health outcomes for individuals with paralysis and their support networks. Wellness Edge also increases the capacity of local communities to enhance and facilitate access to inclusive recreational programs for people with paralysis and their support networks.

Wellness Edge provide grants of up to $25,000 to community organizations that provide organized recreational activities that are intentionally designed to benefit individuals, groups, or communities. This year’s grants have been awarded to the following organizations:

Adaptive Sport South Central Kentucky offers a variety of programs that tailor to the interests and needs of participants. The mission is to provide leisure and sport opportunities for people with physical disabilities, but also to educate the community. Offerings include competitive wheelchair basketball for youth and adults, adaptive water sports in partnership with Warren County Parks and Recreation, an inclusive archery program, and sled-hockey demonstrations.

The Derby City Curling Club is an inclusive organization that welcomes people of all ages and abilities. As the first curling club in Kentucky, Derby City Curling teaches, develops, promotes, and increases interest in the sport of curling. The goal of the Wellness Edge grant is to increase participation in the adaptive curling program that allows those with mobility issues and paralysis to participate in curling with their family and friends, foster new friendships and create opportunities to compete at their interest level.

The Easter Seals Cardinal Hill Adaptive Recreation Programming Project Wellness Edge grant will focus on adaptive recreational activities for children and adults with spinal cord injuries, mobility limitations or paralysis, along with their families and support systems. These activities will be tailored to people with paralysis and other mobility limiting factors and their networks of support. Over the next year, they will offer activities for a wide range of folks, including adaptive climbing, shooting sports, and fishing throughout the region offered at no cost to the participant and their support systems.

Gathering Strength, Inc. will provide group adapted health and wellness activities/classes for people with paralysis and their family caregivers through the Wellness Edge grant. The group activities will be virtual (using videoconferencing), and in-person (only when safe and advisable). Activities for people with paralysis may include stress reduction, stretching, breathing and cardiovascular exercise. Activities for family caregivers may include relaxation, exercise, and discussion/support. The project also will train yoga and exercise teachers to conduct adapted classes, thereby increasing the capacity for providing adapted activities in the Louisville area.

Independence Place, Inc. (IPKY) through one of its peer-led, peer support programs known as Let’s Roll Kentucky, will use Wellness Edge funding to implement Project ACCESS (Adaptive Cooking Class, Education, Safety, and Sustenance). The aim of ACCESS is to bring together individuals with and without paralysis for adaptive cooking classes of all skill levels. These classes will focus on healthy eating, safety in the kitchen, adaptive kitchen utensils, and how to incorporate exercise and other healthy habits into daily modified routines. In addition to the scheduled cooking classes, ACCESS will develop and share online resources on topics like demonstrations on how to use adaptive equipment, , physical and/or virtual tours of accessible kitchens, safety demonstrations, and more.

Kentucky/Indiana Paralyzed Veterans of America (KIPVA) will teach online classes for Drone flyers through the Wellness Edge grant. Partnering with the Drone Academy and presenting as a series of online classes makes it possible to cover the necessary curriculum to prepare participants to fly a drone safely and legally. This course introduces safe flying, as well as drone photography and videography. KIPVA will continue to work with the Drone Academy and any interested participants to continue their education toward becoming a certified drone pilot and any interest in developing skills that could assist with a drone flying career.

The Kentucky Appalachian Rural Rehabilitation Network (KARRN) in collaboration with the Hazard Stroke Survivor and Caregiver Support group will hold an outdoor recreational and educational event to support individuals affected by stroke and their families living in Appalachian eastern Kentucky. This Rural Appalachia Stroke Camp will be hosted at Buckhorn State Resort Park in Perry County Kentucky and will include adapted recreational activities, educational activities, and free health assessments. This camp will also provide an opportunity for students from multiple healthcare programs the opportunity to volunteer with the community members they are training to serve.

The project described is supported by Grant Number 90PRRC0001-01-00 from the Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the Wellness Edge staff and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Administration for Community Living Or HHS.