Thursday, January 31, 2008

Working 2 Walk -- How To Help

This blog is aimed at spreading awareness about how people with high level paralysis can experience -- and are experiencing -- a better quality of life, primarily through the fun, social, and competitive aspects that participating in a sport can provide. Bowling and/or playing power soccer can improve life now -- but, longterm... we still need science, medicine, and the Good Lord's blessing (which I believe we have) to develop therapies that restore significant function and "cure" paralysis.

With the passing of Christopher Reeve in 2004, we lost the "face" and most ardent advocate for paralysis and spinal cord injury (SCI) research. Instead of just one person trying to fill his mammoth shoes, those of us in the paralysis community who wish to see a cure sooner rather than later, we all need to do our part to help bring truly beneficial therapies to fruition ASAP. That's the vision that led to the formation of Unite 2 Fight Paralysis (U2FP), a group with whom I'm proud to associate. U2FP, working with the Christopher Reeve Foundation, held the inaugural Working 2 Walk (W2W) Science and Advocacy Symposium in 2006 and another successful event in 2007.

The 3rd annual Working 2 Walk, 2008, is being held in Washington DC April 13-15 and is "... a 3-day event for leaders in the paralysis community who want to advocate for a cure, including family members, supporters, scientists, therapists, and anyone interested in joining this critical effort. The event focuses on education and empowerment to become effective advocates."

Really, anyone can help. If you have a SCI, and can go to Washington DC for the three days, please consider doing so (see links to more info below). Anyone else who is reading this can let their elected officials (the ones in Washington DC) know that you support passing the Christopher and Dana Reeve Paralysis Act (CDRPA), which will provide much-needed infrastructure for bringing about legitimate therapies AND help improve quality of life for people currently living with paralysis. It does NOT have anything to do with using "controversial" embryonic stem cells.

For more information, checkout the below links.

THANKS -- and God bless!

Bill Miller :-)
C1-2 Quadriplegic with a 206 High Bowling Game
Co-founder of Manufacturing Genuine Thrills Inc. d/b/a MGT
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