Kelly Brush Foundation Awards $80K in Grants for Ski Racing Safety and Adaptive Sports

Dec 20, 2010, 08:00 ET from Kelly Brush Foundation

BURLINGTON, Vt., Dec. 20, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Kelly Brush Foundation year-end grants for spinal cord injury prevention and enriching the lives of those with spinal cord injuries totaled $80,000, Kelly Brush Foundation Executive Director Joyce Wallace announced.

The foundation granted $35,000 in Ski Racing Safety Grants to ski clubs and race teams across the country for race course safety equipment and $45,000 was awarded in Kelly Brush Inspiration Grants for adaptive athletic equipment.

"Ski clubs and race teams in Montana, Colorado, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Maine, New Hampshire, New York and Vermont will benefit from grants awarded by the Kelly Brush Foundation," Wallace said. "The grants enable the purchase of safety netting, lift tower padding and other safety equipment designed to enhance on-hill race course safety for ski racers of all ages and abilities."

In all, 14 individuals from across the United States who are living with SCI received Kelly Brush Inspiration Grants for adaptive athletic equipment including monoskis and handcycles.

"By providing individuals with adaptive sports equipment, the foundation significantly enhances the lives of those with spinal cord injuries enabling them to get back to the sport they love or to experience a form of recreation brand new to them," Wallace said.

As the race season gets underway, the Kelly Brush Foundation also announced the launching of the 2011 Ski Racing Safety is No Accident safety awareness campaign, an outreach and education program to ski clubs and teams nationwide.

"In partnership with the United States Ski Association and with support from the ski industry, the Kelly Brush Foundation has become a catalyst for awareness and change in making the sport of ski racing as safe as possible," said Kelly Brush Foundation President Charlie Brush.

This round of grants was made possible by the foundation's primary fund-raising event, the Kelly Brush Foundation Century Ride held annually in September in Middlebury, Vt. and hosted by the Middlebury College Ski Team. This past September, 23 handcyclists and 675 cyclists rode 28, 50 or 100 miles in support of the foundation's mission and raised nearly $275,000. The ride is the region's largest adaptive cycling event.

About the foundation: The Kelly Brush Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to its four-part mission to provide adaptive athletic equipment for individuals with traumatic spinal cord injuries, improving  safety in ski racing, advancing scientific research on SCI and supporting the U.S. Adaptive Ski Team.  The Foundation began in 2006 after Kelly sustained a severe spinal cord injury while racing in a NCAA Division 1 competition as a member of the Middlebury College Ski Team in Vermont. The Foundation affirms Kelly's ongoing commitment to live life on her own terms and enhance the lives of others living with SCI.

SOURCE Kelly Brush Foundation