Posts tagged with "disability"

Vaughn Lowery, 360 MAGAZINE, USA, NYC

What are veterans actually entitled to?

Enlisting in the military is a huge decision that isn’t to be taken lightly. Yet millions of the population take that step without hesitation to protect their country and sadly, return home sometimes with life-changing injuries.

VA disability benefits

VA disability pay rates demonstrate how veterans are given a combined disability rating which is also impacted by their number of dependents. It is complex to understand and vets are not always awarded the right compensation they deserve, which is why legal advice is often necessary.

However, financial entitlement is merely one of the many issues facing vets when returning home. What they have to live on is only a small component of the multiple ways they are faced with piecing together a life after serving in the military. 

The adjustment from life on the frontline to life back in the world they have been defending can be difficult. This is not just in the cultural, everyday sense of no longer existing in a disciplined and structured way with danger and high risk at every turn, but also in the practical sense too.

The paperwork that is required to exist back in life as a normal citizen, the health implications that may be a result of service, the overwhelming list of things to organize to have everything you need – it is a whirlwind, to say the least.

Health benefits

Health issues can be extremely broad-ranging. From the hugely debilitating and devastatingly life-altering physically to the equally paralyzing mentally, and often, as a result of the latter, the all-consuming consequence of this being substance abuse.

Therefore, there is a wide range of health benefits vets are deservedly entitled to use, depending on their specific needs. However, it is often hard for them to know exactly which services they might need if they haven’t yet identified their issues, or it might be that they aren’t aware of the services or cannot get access to them.

Education tuition and career counseling

Another avenue for vets to go down is education and tuition to enable them to further their civilian training and find a suitable career route after the military. It could still be that they pursue a career within the military but just not in active duty, or it might be that they want to retire from service and pursue something different entirely in civilian life.

There are many ways they can do this, such as applying for help to cover the costs of school or job training, or it might be that career counseling is needed. This is when vets seek advice and guidance on where their skills might be best suited within other jobs and which programs would help them get on that path. 

Furthermore, it also helps them to recognize where they might be going through some issues which are preventing them from achieving their goals.

Housing

Vets are entitled to home loans and grants to help towards the costs of paying for their homes or any modifications necessary as a result of their injuries. This may be in the form of ramps, wider doorways or much more complex changes, that could potentially even impact the building structurally.

However, in more extreme circumstances, but sadly, increasingly more common these days are the instances of homelessness amongst vets. There is advice available on shelters and storage of personal belongings as well as what other options might be open, such as armed forces retirement homes and housing programs. 

In conclusion…

It is so important to create awareness and support our veterans who have done so much for our country. So, hopefully by sharing this information, people who may have vets in their family, or friendship circles can help them find the advice they need to get a better start after they return home.

There is a lot of confusion out there, just as there can be with any benefits. But, by being aware of the challenges these men and women face on civilian soil after performing their duty, we can all make it a better country by sharing this and helping them as they’ve helped us. 

Victoria Arlen, 360 MAGAZINE, Free Wheelchair Mission (FWM), Gala

Free Wheelchair Mission Raises $1.8 million at Miracle of Mobility Gala

Inspirational TV Personality Victoria Arlen Delivers Message of Hope

Guests use VR Glasses to be Transported to Guatemalan Village

An unforgettable evening on July 25th filled with surprises, heartfelt inspiration and the pure joy of giving culminated with Free Wheelchair Mission (FWM) receiving over $1.8 million in donations in one night – the most ever at this event and enough to transform the lives of more than 22,500 individuals living with disabilities in under-resourced nations around the world. Already, the humanitarian nonprofit has distributed 1.2 million wheelchairs around the world.

The 600-plus who attended the 16th annual Miracle of Mobility gala at Segerstrom Center of the Arts were treated to a fabulous gala evening PLUS three unique opportunities:

1) listening to television personality and gold medalist Victoria Arlen, whose own story of regaining mobility is incredible

2) journeying virtually to a small Guatemalan village using Oculus VR glasses and feeling like they are on a mission to distribute wheelchairs

3) taking part in an exciting live auction where generous donors bought wheelchairs for individuals living with a disability in an under-resourced nation. Each $80 donation will buy one wheelchair – changing that person’s life forever as he or she begins a life of mobility.

Guests enjoyed an internationally themed cocktail reception with food stations offering global cuisine, a silent auction filled with an eclectic array of gifts and experiences, a performance by Infinite Flow, the first wheelchair dance company in the world, and inspirational remarks from Free Wheelchair Founder and President Don Schoendorfer.

The evening’s special guest, 24-year-old Victoria Arlen, holds impressive credentials: ESPN host, Paralympics gold medalist, Dancing with the Stars semi-finalist, author and most recently, co-host of the NBC TV’s American Ninja Warrior Junior.  Those credentials would be impressive for anyone but considering that Victoria was struck by two rare neurological diseases at the age of 11, causing her to be trapped in her body in a minimally conscious state for four years, it is an incredible turnaround.

Victoria spoke at the gala about her journey, including the four years when doctors doubted that she would ever return and the subsequent several years when she fought back to begin life again. She offered a message of hope and the importance of being thankful for what you have.

“When you focus on what you still have, you will find it changes your perspective, and that change in perspective creates hope. Hope that tomorrow will be just a bit better than today and when you take that hope, and mix in your own hard work, lots and lots of hard work, I believe you will find yourself back on the path to living out your own dreams.”

Victoria credits her parents with the hope that saved her. “Over and over doctors told my parents they needed to accept the very real possibility that I would not survive and, even if I did, the Victoria they once knew was not coming back. And while my family was willing to accept the diagnosis, they refused to throw up their hands and accept that this was all my future had in store. They accepted the diagnosis, but NOT the prognosis,” Victoria related.

“Somehow, they believed I was not a lost cause. I now believe that it was their refusal to accept that prognosis that brought me back to life.”

Following Victoria’s talk, a robust live auction led to the donation of more than 21,900 wheelchairs to be built and distributed in 93 countries around the world. In 2017, Free Wheelchair Mission reached the milestone of one million wheelchairs distributed and now is pursuing its goal of reaching the next million by 2025.

“Tonight’s gala was successful for so many reasons, most notably the many volunteers who help us bring the gift of mobility to people living with disabilities around the world and the many donors who embrace our mission and recognize how even a simple $80 donation can change a life forever, “ said Free Wheelchair Mission CEO Nuka Solomon.

“The gift from Free Wheelchair Mission provides the mobility that allows each recipient to begin a new life – whether it’s taking care of themselves, attending school or working – and we find that the vitality of the entire family and community are changed too,” Solomon added.

Key sponsors of the gala included Transformation Sponsors: Advisors Mortgage Group and The McDonald Family; Freedom Sponsors: The Hummelberg Family, The Morris Family Foundation, Diamond Hill Capital Management, KPMG and PR Construction. The full list of sponsors can be found here.

About Free Wheelchair Mission:Free Wheelchair Mission (FWM) is a humanitarian, faith-based nonprofit based in Irvine, Calif. that designs and manufactures cost-efficient, durable wheelchairs for individuals living with disabilities in under-resourced nations. FWM collaborates with a worldwide network of like-minded partners that facilitate wheelchair distribution in 93 countries. FWM provides renewed dignity, independence and hope through the gift of mobility at no cost to the recipient. Just $80, the cost to manufacture and deliver one wheelchair, can change a person’s life forever. Founded in 2001 by Don Schoendorfer, Ph.D., the organization reached the milestone of distributing one million wheelchairs in 2017. FWM currently intends to distribute the next million wheelchairs by 2025. For information or donations, visit freewheelchairmission.org.

Getting to the Heart of the Problem

Although it is well known that cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death and disability among all Americans, there is still a misconception that it primarily affects older, white men.

The truth is, the risks are even higher for African Americans. African Americans have higher rates of heart disease risk factors such as hypertension, obesity and diabetes. Currently, 44% of African American men and 48% of African American women have some form of heart disease in the U.S.

Experts say there are several reasons why heart disease disproportionally affects the black community ranging from genetic to environmental factors. There are simple ways to control certain risk factors to reduce your risk for heart disease – it can be as simple as changing your daily habits.

Lifestyle Changes Can Include:
-Healthy diet
-Be physically active every day
-Reduce stress
-Quit smoking

During Heart Health Month, Dr. Wayne Batchelor, an interventional cardiologist and member of the Association of Black Cardiologists, is available to explain what you need to know if you have a risk factor that’s out of your control, how to talk to your doctor and the latest advancements in treatment options.

Rock Solid Research On How To Prevent Dementia

Dr. Timothy R. Jennings speaks expertly on a subject that concerns over 5.5 million people across the nation: how to prevent dementia and keep our mind sharp as we age. A psychiatrist and international speaker, Jennings introduces his new book, recently rated #1 by Amazon in books on dementia, The Aging Brain: Proven Steps to Prevent Dementia and Sharpen Your Mind.

Dr. Jennings prescribes simple, everyday actions we can take to stave off disease, promote vitality, and prevent dementia and late-onset Alzheimer’s. “The choices we make now can help us to keep our minds sharp and maintain our independence as we age,” says Jennings.

An easy-to-use guide to maintaining brain and body health throughout life, The Aging Brain is based on solid, up-to-date scientific research, and the interventions discussed can prevent progression toward dementia, even in those already showing signs of mild cognitive impairment. The recommendations also may help reduce disability and depression.

“This book isn’t just for people hoping to slow the aging process,” says Jennings. “It’s also for anyone who is a caregiver to someone at risk of or already beginning to suffer from dementia. It offers a hopeful, healthy way forward.”

Jennings, who maintains a private practice in Chattanooga, TN, has authored several books, including The God-Shaped Brain and The God-Shaped Heart. He is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association and Fellow of the Southern Psychiatric Association, and is president and founder of Come and Reason Ministries.

For more information about Dr. Jennings, please visit the website: https://www.agingbrainbook.com.

To connect with Dr. Jennings, please visit: https://www.facebook.com/DrTimJennings/ and https://twitter.com/timjenningsmd.

MagnaReady × Stylish Options × Disabilities

There are over 50 million adults in the United States with a disability or health condition that limits their mobility in some way.

As we age tasks that used to be simple that we could complete without thinking twice about it become more challenging. Just turn on late night or early morning television and you will see dozens of informercials for gadgets that make it easier to hear, read, open jars, you get the idea. Until recently though, no one had come up with a practical way to make it easier for arthritic hands, someone who is missing an arm or fingers, or someone with another type of limitation to their mobility to grip and maneuver buttons into buttonholes.

There are those loop gadgets you can use to snag the button and pull it through a buttonhole, but those are not necessarily a time-saver and can still be very hard for some people to use. Unfortunately, it took a diagnosis or Parkinson’s disease to create an alternative option. Maura Horton created her patented magnetic closures for clothing after her husband, who was a college football coach, started to struggle with the buttons on his dress shirts. Because his job required him to travel with the team, Maura could not always be there to help Don. Instead of buttons, she thought why not magnets that would essentially be able to button his shirt for him?

It took some time to research and find the right type of magnets and perfect the design, but eventually Maura was able to create a dress shirt that looked no different to the unknowing eye, but that could restore independence to someone with upper body mobility challenges. Now, the patented MagnaReady magnetic closure technology is used in pants, polos, long sleeve dress shirts and short sleeve camp shirts, creating clothing options that are an intelligent and stylish choice for seniors or people with mobility difficulties of any age.

360 Magazine, MagnaReady360 Magazine, MagnaReady360 Magazine, MagnaReady

DISABILITY EMPLOYMENT

“People with disabilities are entering the workforce in unprecedented numbers?” It’s worth looking at the reports that show how “no group has felt the benefits of accelerated economic growth more than Americans with a disability”

Indeed, people with disabilities experienced a four-fold increase in job opportunities last year – unprecedented growth

In states across the country, Governors are undertaking new efforts to expand job opportunities for all. For example, Gov.Edwards recently launched a task force focused on employment for Louisianans with disabilities. Gov. Walker just signed historic legislation that makes Wisconsin an Employment First and commits resources to expanding competitive, integrated employment. Remarkable progress and remarkable leadership.

During the Meeting of the National Governors Association (NGA), our team and partner organizations spoke 1-on-1 with thirty-four different Governors. In each meeting we advocated for policies and practices that will expand economic opportunities. For several Governors, we had the chance to honor them with an award for their leadership and their continuing commitment to these issues.

At the end of the day, there are hundreds of self-advocates, community organizations and state leaders in a position to drive this change forward. Your involvement can move progress even faster! Expanding opportunities requires leaders across the public sector, the private sector and advocates to join forces and find solutions. First, check out where your state ranks and what challenges impact opportunities. You can also see what your state has done or is already doing to expand jobs for people with disabilities. We have written in-depth reports about what each of the 50 states is doing to advance opportunities for Americans with disabilities. image-2018-04-18 (1)

AUTISM IN LOVE

Shalva, the esteemed non-profit dedicated to aiding those with disabilities of all ages, presented an exclusive director screening of the 2015 Emmy-nominated film, Autism In Love by Director Matt Fuller that was held at the newly opened Planetarium at the Patricia and Philip Frost Museum of Science in Downtown Miami in tandem with the romantic occasion.

Founder Kalman Samuels created the non-denominational organization in Jerusalem, Israel with the aim of providing and quality care for those of all ages and socio-economic backgrounds free of charge as well as dedicated scientific research of various disabilities that ultimately fosters a more inclusive society.

Following the special screening, guests moved to The Deep space just beneath the eye-catching aquarium and enjoyed sounds by DJ Irie, who spinned lively tunes in the later part of the evening. Curated cocktails were served by award-winning Dominican rum brand Ron Barceló and guests enjoyed delectable gourmet kosher offerings in sushi, kebabs and desserts. During this portion, Shalva gave remarks while guests
carefully engaged in the organization and the organization’s exciting plans for the future. After the event wrapped up, guests were given gift bags by Italian fragrance house Acqua di Parma.