ARISE Adaptive Design Program
This project will help grow the awareness and utilization of the ARISE Adaptive Design program among individuals with SCI. Adaptive Design brings together teams of trained volunteers and individuals with disabilities to build highly-customized equipment that facilitates independent living goals.
Adaptive equipment is constructed at “builds” that currently take place at various “pop-up” locations within the community, including churches, libraries, garages, schools, universities, and the ARISE main office. Adaptive solutions are created using simple materials such as rigid cardboard, PVC tubing, and thermo-plastics; the solutions are low cost, immediate, flexible, and self-directed. Individuals determine a barrier to an activity that is meaningful and important to them and partner with ARISE to design and build the solution. Some examples: a custom wheelchair footrest that allows an individual to comfortably wear their favorite shoes; a cardboard rocking chair to help a child begin exploring movement; a Halloween costume that transforms a wheelchair into a school bus; circle-time benches that allow a child to participate in group activities; a 3D printed cup holder that mounts to a wheelchair; custom cooking utensils that allow an individual with SCI to cook; special inserts for an adaptive kayak. This program aligns with the goals of the Neilsen Foundation by providing individuals with a SCI the means to reinstate control over their environment, regain their independence and improve their quality of life.
Neilsen Foundation funding will support an increased awareness and utilization of the Adaptive Design program among individuals with SCI on two fronts: marketing and outreach efforts and product development. Marketing and outreach support will allow the Adaptive Design Coordinator to create promotional materials (brochures, flyers, ads) and conduct presentations to various SCI groups and independent living centers. Product development (i.e. equipment, program space, and materials) will allow the Adaptive Design program to construct sophisticated equipment that, in addition to rigid cardboard, could include 3D printed items and motorized components. ARISE anticipates serving over 500 individuals through outreach and product development during the project period. (CHN: COandI chn:wdg)