The PRC is the only national program that directly serves the 5.4 million Americans living with multiple sclerosis (MS), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), stroke, spina bifida, spinal cord injury, cerebral palsy, and other forms of paralysis. The Reeve Foundation has operated the PRC for 19 years, competing in a rigorous, competitive bidding process every three years to renew funding. This cycle included the ability to apply for a five-year grant, which supports the operation of a National Paralysis Resource Center through June 2026.
"It's a privilege to work alongside ACL to deliver our promise to bring Today's Care. Tomorrow's Cure to our community," said Maggie Goldberg, President and COO, Reeve Foundation. "The PRC is the preeminent resource for anyone diagnosed with or living with paralysis, bringing care and information needed from the start of their journey through the day-to-day challenges of living an independent and fulfilling life. Our services are here to help everyone impacted by paralysis navigate health issues, emotional well-being and, ultimately, to find new normalcy."
In partnership with the ACL, the PRC works to combat social isolation while pursuing health equity and inclusion for individuals with all forms of paralysis and their family members through a vast network of services and educational resources, including:
Information Specialists: One of the PRC's signature programs is a team of certified, trained Information Specialists who are often the first port of call for those newly injured or diagnosed with paralysis and can answer questions in 170 languages. To date, Information Specialists have provided direct counseling to over 108,000 people. The PRC has also distributed 220,000 copies of its Paralysis Resource Guide, a staple in hospitals and rehabilitation facilities across the country.
Peer & Family Support Program: The Peer & Family Support Program is a national network that offers peer-to-peer connections to individuals and family members impacted by paralysis. Over 470 peer mentors have been trained and certified in 41 states. These individuals have mentored over 17,000 people.
Quality of Life Grants Program: The PRC's Quality of Life Grants Program funds nonprofit initiatives in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. Since 1999, the grant program has awarded over $34 million to fund nearly 3,400 community projects. This program has increased employment training, funded accessible transportation, abuse prevention programs, helped individuals learn how to manage their financial well-being, provided support services for veterans and focused on addressing social isolation due to COVID-19. Through its multiple cycles during the year, the program also funds other community-based activities like adaptive gardening to end food insecurity and improved access to buildings, playgrounds and universities.
Military & Veterans Program: The PRC has a comprehensive Military & Veterans Program, which provides dedicated resources designed to support current service members and veterans' unique needs, regardless of when they served or how their injury was obtained.
Virtual Support Groups: Virtual support groups led by professional facilitators and peer mentors living with paralysis or the family members/caregivers of individuals living with paralysis combat isolation and foster greater connection among peers who understand the daily challenges of living with paralysis.
The PRC also offers community education through videos, blogs, webinars, and a vast resource library with comprehensive fact sheets and booklets on topics ranging from the coronavirus to autonomic dysreflexia to parenting with a disability. Resources have been translated into more than a dozen languages, including Arabic, Japanese and Tigrinya, a language spoken in northern Ethiopia and southern Eritrea.
"The PRC is such a vital resource for the paralysis community. Through its various programs, resources and publications that serve the distinct needs of individuals living with paralysis and their caregivers, the PRC assist people with tools to live life to the fullest," said Patricia Volland, Chair, Quality of Life Committee of the Board of Directors. "The PRC empowers millions of families impacted by paralysis to lead independent lives and fully participate in their communities. We are continuously appreciative for our partnership with ACL, Reeve advocates and Members of Congress who support our mission and make this all possible."
Co-founded by Dana Reeve, the National Paralysis Resource Center was created for the millions of people – like herself – seeking information and needed a centralized place to seek practical and emotional support in their day-to-day lives.
The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation is dedicated to curing spinal cord injury by funding innovative research and improving the quality of life for individuals and families impacted by paralysis. By uniting the brightest minds in the field, we are working tirelessly to accelerate scientific discovery across the field of spinal cord research by investing in labs across the globe. Additionally, through a cooperative agreement with the Administration for Community Living, the Reeve Foundation's National Paralysis Resource Center (PRC) promotes the health, well-being, and independence of people living with paralysis, providing comprehensive information, resources, and referral services assisting over 100,000 individuals and families since its launch in 2002. The Reeve Foundation is committed to elevating our community's voices and needs to achieve greater representation and independence. We meet all 20 of the Better Business Bureau's standards for charity accountability and hold the BBB's Charity Seal. For more information, please visit www.ChristopherReeve.org or call 800-225-0292.