DGF Celebrates Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Week in Florida, November 10-17

November 6th, 2013

DGF to Donate Wheelchairs to Several Floridians; Educate Students at High Schools on Ways to Prevent Spinal Cord Injuries; Present Gifts to the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis & Speediatrics

PSA Featuring Ryan Newman and Darrell Gwynn

SCIAW Logo 2013DAVIE, Fla. – The Darrell Gwynn Foundation will celebrate Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Week (SCIAW) in Florida from November 10-17, 2013. 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, co-founder 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.”

Auto Accidents are the leading cause of spinal cord injuries in Florida. A Public Service Announcement (PSA) urging drivers not to text & drive, drink & drive and always wear their seatbelt starring NASCAR Star Ryan Newman and NHRA Hall of Famer Darrell Gwynn 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.

During SCIAW, on behalf of its donors and supporters, the Darrell Gwynn Foundation will donate four state-of-the-art custom power and manual wheelchairs to deserving Floridians. The donations are being made through the foundation’s national Wheelchair Donation Program which donates custom power wheelchairs to individuals facing medical and financial hardships. The donations will take place and several major events in Florida including a Miami Dolphins game, the Ford 400 Championship and the Hot Rods & Reels Charity Fishing Tournament with NASCAR Drivers.  

The Darrell Gwynn Foundation’s Education & Prevention Program will also address students at several high schools in 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.

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, Clint Bowyer, 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 16 at 8:30 a.m.  Proceeds from the tournament benefit the Darrell Gwynn Foundation’s mission.

For more information on SCIAW and the Darrell Gwynn Foundation please visit www.darrellgwynnfoundation.org.

Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Week Events:  

Date        Time             Event                                                   Location

Wheelchair Donations

Nov. 13    4 p.m.            WC Donation to Brian Trinka                   Washington Rehab Center, Chipley, Fla.

Nov. 16    8 a.m.            WC Donation to Gerard Materiale            Homestead-Miami Speedway

Nov. 17    12:30 p.m.      WC Donation to Hildebran Companioni     Sun Life Stadium, Miami, Fla.

Nov. 17    3 p.m.            WC Donation to Jose Garay                    Homestead-Miami Speedway


Patient Assistance Fund Gifts

Nov. 15    2 p.m.            Gift to Miami Project to Cure Paralysis    Lois Pope LIFE Center, Miami, Fla.

Nov. 16    10 a.m.          Gift to Speediatrics                                Homestead-Miami Speedway



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

Nov. 4      12 noon          Education & Prevention Presentation       Cypress Bay HS

Nov. 5      9 a.m.            Education & Prevention Presentation       Western HS

Nov. 5      12 noon          Broward School Board Proclamation        Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

Nov. 12    12 noon          Education & Prevention Presentation       HealthSouth, Sunrise, Fla.

Nov. 13    12:20 p.m.      Education & Prevention Presentation       Krop HS

Nov. 14    9:40 a.m.       Education & Prevention Presentation       Hollywood Hills HS

Nov. 18    11:15 a.m.      Education & Prevention Presentation       Park Vista HS

Nov. 19    9 a.m.            Education & Prevention Presentation       Pembroke Pines Charter HS


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 facing medical and financial hardships. The foundation also maintains a Patient Assistance Fund offering support services and tools at Craig Hospital in Englewood, Colorado and Brooks Rehabilitation Hospital in Jacksonville, Fla. 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. The Darrell Gwynn Foundation has reached the GuideStar Exchange Gold Participation Level as a demonstration of its commitment to transparency. For more information please visit www.darrellgwynnfoundation.org or www.facebook.com/darrellgwynnfoundationor follow @gwynnfoundation.



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