News Release Header
For Immediate Release:
August 14, 2014
Media Contact:
Edith Torres
etorres@miamidade.gov
305-755-7862

Rebecca Laming
media@ChristopherReeve.org
973-379-2690

The Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade Receives a $5,300 Quality Of Life Grant from Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation to Support Miami-Dade Parks Disability Services' Hand-Cycling Program


(MIAMI, August 14, 2014) —  The Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade is proud to announce that it has received a $5,300 Quality of Life grant from the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation for the purchase of two adult hand-cycles and a recumbent bike to support Miami-Dade Parks Disability Services’ Hand-cycling Program – Hand-cycles for All. The award was one of 73 grants totaling more than $537,550 awarded by the Reeve Foundation to nonprofit organizations nationwide that provide more opportunities, access, and daily quality of life for individuals living with paralysis, their families, and caregivers. Conceived by the late Dana Reeve, the program has awarded 2,380 grants totaling more than $17.6 million since 1999. 

For the past four years, in partnership with the City of Miami, Miami-Dade Parks’ Disability Services has offered a hand-cycling program to people with disabilities who otherwise would not be able to enjoy recreational or competitive cycling due to paralysis or other physical impairment that would hinder their ability to pedal a bicycle with their feet. Due to the growing number of participants in the sport, Miami-Dade Parks Disability Services has also partnered with Achilles International of South Florida to provide a second hand-cycling program at Homestead Air Reserve Park. The travelling equipment will not only be available at Miami-Dade Parks’ Disability Services in-house programs, but will also be available for use at partnering sites; specialized clinics and outreach programs for veterans, physical rehabilitation clinics and hospitals; the Junior Paralympic Sports program; special events, such as the Paralympic Experience and more, providing greater access to hand-cycles for this growing population. 

“We want to thank the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation for once again granting us a Quality of Life grant to provide much-needed recreational and wellness opportunities to the physically disabled population of Miami-Dade County,” said Dick Anderson, President of The Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade.  “It is our mission to help support recreational, health and wellness programs for the people in Miami-Dade County, most especially persons with disabilities, providing them with opportunities for fitness, sports, hobbies, and overall recreation.” 

“Giving the gift of independence for individuals living with paralysis is why the Reeve Foundation Paralysis Resource Center was created. We are honored to provide these organizations with Quality of Life grants to help make this vision come true for the paralysis community nationwide,” said Donna Valente, Quality of Life Grants Director, Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation. “The organizations receiving these grants will offer much needed services that will bolster their communities and strengthen the lives of those accessing these critical programs and resources."                                 

The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation Quality of Life Grants Program was created to address the myriad needs of children and adults with paralysis and other mobility impairments and their families. Grants support critical life-enhancing and life-changing initiatives that improve physical and emotional health and increase independence. Funded projects offer a diversity of services and approaches: improving access; providing education and job training; sponsoring organized sporting activities; and much more. Quality of Life grants are funded through a cooperative agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Award #U59DD000838).  

About the Reeve Foundation

The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation is dedicated to curing spinal cord injury by funding innovative research and improving the quality of life for people living with paralysis through grants, information and advocacy. We meet all 20 of the Better Business Bureau’s standards for charity accountability and hold the BBB’s Charity Seal. The Paralysis Resource Center (PRC) is a program of the Reeve Foundation, and is funded through a cooperative agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Award No. U59DD000838. For more information, please visit our website at www.ChristopherReeve.org or call 800-539-7309. 

About The Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade

The Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization that supports the Miami-Dade Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department’s effort to further develop Miami-Dade County’s world-class parks system for residents and visitors.  Its mission is to create a healthier, more livable and sustainable Miami community by ensuring the implementation of the Parks Open Space Master Plan and the development of year-round park and recreation programs for local children, adults and people with disabilities.  For more information, visit www.liveaparklife.org.

About the Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department:

Nationally accredited, a three-time winner of the NRPA National Gold Medal Award, winner of the 2013 Florida Governor’s Sustained Excellence Award and the 2009 Florida Governor’s Sterling Award for excellence in management and operations, Miami-Dade County Parks is the third largest county park system in the United States, consisting of 260 parks and 12,825 acres of land.  It is one of the most unique park and recreation systems in the world.  Made up of more than just playgrounds and athletic fields, it also comprises out-of-school, sports-development, and summer-camp programs; programs for seniors and people with disabilities; educational nature centers and nature preserves; environmental restoration efforts; arts and culture programs and events; the renowned Zoo Miami, Deering Estate at Cutler and Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden; the Crandon Tennis Center, home of the Sony Open; golf courses; beaches; marinas; campgrounds; pools; and more.  For information about Miami-Dade County Parks call 3-1-1, or visit www.miamidade.gov/parks/.