Darrell Gwynn Foundation Celebrates Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Week Presented by the Toral Family Foundation, November 11-18

October 30th, 2012

 DGF to Donate Wheelchairs Collectively Valued at $127,000 to Six Floridians; Educate Students at Dozens of High Schools on Ways to Prevent Spinal Cord Injuries; Present Gifts to the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis & Speediatrics

 PSA Featuring Tony Stewart, Darrell Gwynn & Frank Toral to Air Statewide

DAVIE, Fla. – The Darrell Gwynn Foundation will celebrate Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Week (SCIAW) in Florida from November 11-18. This year’s week of observance is presented by the Toral Family Foundation and Toral, Garcia & Battista Attorneys at Law whom together gave the Darrell Gwynn Foundation a $150,000 gift to boost its efforts during SCIAW. In 2006, the foundation successfully lobbied for and with a resolution passed by the Florida Legislature, created Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Week to generate awareness of spinal cord injuries and educate the public on ways to prevent them. The Darrell Gwynn Foundation’s mission is to SUPPORT people with paralysis and PREVENT spinal cord injuries

“We are looking forward to highlighting our statewide spinal cord injury prevention efforts though Florida Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Week,” said Dr. Lisa Gwynn, interim executive director of the Darrell Gwynn Foundation. “With the support of community leaders such as Senator Nan Rich, Representative Jeanette Nunez, Miami-Dade School Board Chair Perla Tabares Hantman and Broward School Board Member Laurie Rich Levinson, we are able to fulfill our mission of the prevention of injuries in our youth as well as improving the quality of life of those afflicted with paralysis though various wheelchair donations through the week.”

In partnership with the Florida Department of Health, a Public Service Announcement (PSA) urging drivers not to text & drive, drink & drive and always wear their seatbelt starring NASCAR Champion Tony Stewart, NHRA Hall of Famer Darrell Gwynn and Brain & Spinal Cord Injury Prevention Advocate Frank Toral will air on television and radio throughout the state of Florida during SCIAW. NASCAR will also support the week with every driver sporting the SCIAW Decal on their racecars during Ford Championship Weekend at the Homestead-Miami Speedway.

“We really appreciate Thom Delilah and the Florida Department of Health’s support of the initiative to keep Floridians safe,” said Darrell Gwynn. “The PSA’s will deliver a powerful message and having Tony Stewart involved will really help us make an impact.”

Click to View Tony Stewart, Darrell Gwynn & Frank Toral PSA

During SCIAW, on behalf of its donors and supporters, the Darrell Gwynn Foundation will donate six state-of-the-art custom power and manual wheelchairs to deserving Floridians collectively valued at $127,000. The donations are being made through the foundation’s national Wheelchair Donation Program. Amongst those receiving wheelchair donations that week are Owen Johnson, a 4 year-old from Palm Bay, Fla. whom sustained a spinal cord injury in a car accident and will receive a $40,000 wheelchair donation. Owen was severely injured in a tragic car accident on July 1, 2011 while his family was on vacation. His sister, Hannah, was killed in the accident while his pregnant mother, father and two other sisters were badly injured. Despite this, Owen continues to persevere and has made a great deal of progress since his accident. He recently started pre-school and is cognitively on track. Other wheelchair recipients include Ada Flores of Orlando, Fla., Brandon Jean of Miami who was injured by a gunshot wound, Theo Kendrick & Gururaj Shriram of Miami who receive their sports themed wheelchairs at Miami Dolphins & Miami HEAT games respectively and Gary Patterson, a 9 year-old from Trilby, Fla. diagnosed with cerebral palsy that will receive a $32,000 wheelchair in a special presentation at his elementary school.

The Darrell Gwynn Foundation’s Education & Prevention Program will also address students at dozens of high schools in South Florida during the month of November. The program sends speakers in wheelchairs to share their stories of how a poor decision changed their lives forever and educate students on the dangers of texting & driving, drinking & driving, not wearing seatbelts, diving in unknown waters, playing with guns and engaging in reckless activities that can ultimately lead to spinal cord injuries. Posters with a message of prevention were also distributed to over 80 high schools in South Florida for display to students to remind them of the dangers of texting & driving, drinking & driving, not wearing seatbelts, diving in unknown waters and other reckless activities.

Finally, the Darrell Gwynn Foundation will make gifts to the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis and Speediatrics Unit at Homestead Hospital through its Patient Assistance Fund during Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Week.

The week culminates during Ford Championship Weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway when NASCAR drivers bring attention to spinal cord injuries as they race by sporting special decals on their cars in observance of SCIAWIn addition, approximately 20 drivers, team owners and celebrities, including Tony Stewart, Ryan Newman, Richard Childress, Darrell Waltrip, Jamie McMurray, Joey Coulter and Martin Truex and many more will take part in the Hot Rods & Reels™ Charity Fishing Tournament at the speedway’s infield lake on November 17 at 8:30 a.m.  Proceeds from the tournament benefit the Darrell Gwynn Foundation’s mission.

Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Week Events:  

Date        Time                                                       Event         Location

Wheelchair Donations

Nov. 7     7:30 p.m.       WC Donation to Gururaj Shriram*           AmericanAirlinesArena, Miami, Fla.

Nov. 9     7 p.m.            WC Donation to Ada Flores                   Orlando, Fla.

Nov. 11    12 noon         WC Donation to Theo Kendrick              SunLife Stadium, Miami Gardens, Fla.

Nov. 13    1 p.m.            WC Donation to Gary Patterson             Centennial Elementary, Dade City, Fla.

Nov. 14    2 p.m.            WC Donation to Brandon Jean               Lois Pope LIFE Center, Miami, Fla.

Nov. 18    12 noon         WC Donation to Owen Johnson             Homestead-Miami Speedway

 

Patient Assistance Fund Gifts

Nov. 14    2 p.m.            Gift to Miami Project to Cure Paralysis   Lois Pope LIFE Center, Miami, Fla.

Nov. 17    10 a.m.          Gift to Speediatrics                               Homestead-Miami Speedway

 

Events

Nov. 17    8:30 a.m.       Hot Rods & Reels Fishing Tournament   Homestead-Miami Speedway

Nov. 18    12 noon         SCIAW Presentation at Ford 400            Homestead-Miami Speedway

 

Education & Prevention Program School Presentations*

Oct. 6      12 noon          Education & Prevention Program Nova HS

Oct. 16    10 a.m.          Education & Prevention Program Hialeah HS

Nov. 9     11 a.m.          Education & Prevention Program           Miami Killian HS

Nov. 13    9 a.m.            Education & Prevention Program           South Plantation HS

Nov. 13    10 a.m.          Education & Prevention Program           Stranahan HS

Nov. 13    12 noon         Education & Prevention Program           Krop HS

Nov. 14    7 a.m.            Education & Prevention Program           West Broward HS

Nov. 14    10:30 a.m.      Education & Prevention Program           Barbara Goleman HS

Nov. 14    10:30 a.m.      Education & Prevention Program           Western HS

Nov. 14    10:30 a.m.      Education & Prevention Program           Coral Gables HS

Nov. 15    8 a.m.            Education & Prevention Program           Taravella HS

Nov. 15    8:30 a.m.       Education & Prevention Program           American Prep HS

Nov. 15    10 a.m.          Education & Prevention Program           Douglas HS

Nov. 15    12 noon         Education & Prevention Program           Coral Glades HS

Nov. 16    7:30 a.m.       Education & Prevention Program           Miami Palmetto HS

Nov. 15    10 a.m.          Education & Prevention Program           Chaminade-Madonna HS

Nov. 16    11 a.m.          Education & Prevention Program           Ely HS

Nov. 16    12 noon         Education & Prevention Program           Monsignor Pace HS

Nov. 19    10 a.m.          Education & Prevention Program           Booker T. Washington HS

Nov. 26    10 a.m.          Education & Prevention Program           Varela HS

Nov. 27    11 a.m.          Education & Prevention Program           Cypress Bay HS

 

*Dates and times subject to change.

 

Give the Gift of Mobility: https://darrellgwynnfoundation.org/the-gift-of-mobility.php  

 

About the Darrell Gwynn Foundation

Founded in 2002 by Champion Racer Darrell Gwynn and his wife, Lisa, the Darrell Gwynn Foundation is a 501(c)3 organization whose mission is to provide SUPPORT for people living with paralysis and PREVENT spinal cord injuries. The foundation’s primary support program is its national Wheelchair Donation Program. With this program the Darrell Gwynn Foundation has donated custom built wheelchairs to hundreds of individuals in need. The foundation also maintains a Patient Assistance Fund offering support services and tools at Craig Hospital in Englewood, Colorado with aspirations to expand this model to several hospitals nationwide. The Patient Assistance Fund also supports two Speediatrics Units the Betty Jane France Pediatric Center, at Halifax Hospital in Daytona, Fla. and Homestead Hospital in Homestead, Fla. Additionally, the Patient Assistance Fund provides financial support through its Fast Track Laboratory with the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis aimed at finding a cure for paralysis. The foundation operates an Education & Prevention Program directed to high school students to educate them on the dangers of risky behavior that can lead to spinal cord injuries. This rapidly growing program reaches over 10,000 students annually at over 50 high schools. In an effort to create more awareness about spinal cord injuries, the Darrell Gwynn Foundation successfully lobbied for and established a National Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Month and Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Week in Florida. With tremendous fundraising partners such as Barrett-Jackson, the NHRA, NASCAR and many more generous sponsors, individual supporters and donors, the Darrell Gwynn Foundation continues to evolve as a leading foundation for those with spinal cord injuries and living with paralysis. For more information please visit www.darrellgwynnfoundation.org or www.facebook.com/darrellgwynnfoundation.

 

About the Toral Family Foundation

The Toral Family Foundation, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization based in Ft. Lauderdale Florida, is dedicated to providing hope and improving the lives of all persons and their families impacted by a brain or spinal cord injury through research, funding, education and access to community resources. www.toralfamilyfoundation.org

 -DGF-

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,