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Hope & Strength

What YOUR donation means to OUR community

Last winter the CVPH Rehab Team applied for a Solo-Step track system through The Foundation’s Mini Grants.  I had the privilege of meeting John, a patient using the Solo-Step with the goal of regaining his ability to walk.  John fell out of a tree stand while hunting in Ohio last November and sustained a spinal cord injury.  He has a wonderful sense of humor and when I met him he was picking on his therapists to make them laugh.  His therapists got right to work with him and connected him to the Solo-Step which is a track hooked to the ceiling.  The track allows John to rest all of his weight on the harness he’s attached to.  This means that while he is walking, he could potentially “fall” and not be injured because the Solo-Step is keeping him on his feet.  It also gives John room to move because he only needs one therapist assisting him rather than three or four if there was no harness track system. 

Watching John walk in the Solo-Step was remarkable.  He had so much confidence while he was in it.  I spoke with him after watching him in therapy and John explained that after he completed some therapy at the Cleveland Clinic, he was transferred to a VA in Syracuse where he was able to stand for the first time in a Solo-Step.   He said that being able to come back home and continue to practice walking in outpatient therapy gives him hope.  He explained that he couldn’t imagine using a Solo-Step in Syracuse, experiencing that independence and then having to go back to having four therapists helping him walk when he returned home. 

John had one request when I left and that was to show his VA social worker, Sheryl his progress.  I called Sheryl and spoke with her about his progress and hope.  Sheryl explained how grateful she is that he has this opportunity in his own community.  She said, “I don’t think you understand how this deeply improves his self-esteem and self-worth.  Your donors need to know how much of an impact this is making and this is just for one man.  Think of all of the other people this will be able to help in your community.” 

Because of your support, grants like this are helping members of our community work toward their goal of independence. 

Karen Kalman