Persons with Disabilities to Surf at They Will Surf Again ~ August 6
(Elkins Park, PA) On Sunday, August 6, from 8:30 am till 3:30 pm at the Baker Avenue Beach in Wildwood, New Jersey, doctors, therapists, nurses and staff from Jefferson Moss-Magee Rehabilitation will join other volunteers to help persons with disabilities of all ages ride the waves at They Will Surf Again—a free, one-day event that provides persons with disabilities the chance to surf and enjoy a day at the beach. (Since 2012, Jefferson Moss-Magee Rehabilitation has served as the presenting sponsor of They Will Surf Again, the flagship program of Life Rolls On, a nonprofit that serves as a resource and advocate for people who have been affected by spinal cord injury and other disabilities.) To date, Jefferson Moss-Magee Rehabilitation has sent over 600 volunteers to They Will Surf Again, and this year's volunteer corps (along with other volunteers) will help persons with disabilities get up and down the beach using special beach wheelchairs, get in and out of wet-suits and assist surfers in the water as they ride the waves. "We're incredibly thankful to have Jefferson Moss-Magee Rehabilitation as a sponsor and to provide so many volunteers that are trained to assist our surfers," says Jesse Billauer, founder of Life Rolls On and an adaptive surfing world champion. "To have actual therapists and rehab specialists who are trained to properly interact with and assist persons with disabilities intermingled with our other volunteers who surf and are comfortable in the water means proper techniques are used. That assures safety, comfort and dignity for the surfers." But hands-on expertise isn't all that Jefferson Moss-Magee Rehabilitation brings to They Will Surf Again. Since 2015, Jefferson Moss-Magee Rehabilitation has partnered with local surfboard shaper and NJ middle school teacher Luke Alvarez (owner of Generic Brand Surfboards) to create surfboards designed specifically for surfers with disabilities. Working with input from Jefferson Moss-Magee Rehabilitation therapists and surfers who have participated in They Will Surf Again events, the boards have large proportions, making them extremely stable and capable of carrying the weight of two riders (a surfer and volunteer) when necessary. Also, The decks of the boards feature thick pads for comfort and grip and attachment points for adjustable hand straps. Mr. Alvarez has also used the boards to teach his students at Carusi Middle School in Cherry Hill, NJ about the importance of accessibility and inclusiveness. Students (some who have disabilities themselves) have designed inspirational artwork that is laminated onto the boards. These unique surfboards are one-of-a kind works of art and symbols of inclusiveness. As such, they have been displayed at institutions such as Philadelphia Museum of Art and the New Jersey Surfing Hall of Fame. For more info on They Will Surf Again visit LifeRollsOn.org/NewJersey. Senator Tartaglione to Surf with other Persons with Disabilities Sunday, August 6, in Wildwood
On Sunday, August 6 at 8:30 am, with the assistance of her therapy team from Jefferson Moss-Magee Rehabilitation, Pennsylvania State Senator Christine M. Tartaglione will be riding the waves at They Will Surf Again, a free, one-day event at the Baker Avenue Beach in Wildwood, New Jersey, that provides persons with disabilities the chance to ride the waves and enjoy a day at the beach. (Jefferson Moss-Magee Rehabilitation is the presenting sponsor of They Will Surf Again and sends a large volunteer corps of clinicians to assist the adaptive surfers annually.) Senator Tartaglione, a strong advocate for accessibility and inclusiveness on behalf of persons with disabilities, was partially paralyzed in a boating accident in 2003 and uses a wheelchair. “I am so excited to be participating in They Will Surf Again and cannot wait to get back out on the waves with this amazing organization," said Senator Tartaglione. " I, like all of the participants, have a huge amount of gratitude for everyone that makes this possible and helps those of us with disabilities do things we all thought we would never be able to do again. After my accident, I never expected to be able to surf, but They Will Surf Again founder Jesse Billauer and Jefferson Moss-Magee Rehabilitation are making sure people living with disabilities and mobility issues can continue to do new things."