Burke Rehabilitation Hospital in White Plains, N.Y., has received a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs grant to support a new adaptive sports program.
The award of $336,532 will help to fund the Burke Rehabilitation Adaptive Sports for Veterans Program, also known as BRAVE.
BRAVE, a comprehensive plan to provide more access to adaptive sports and recreation, is aimed at disabled veterans and disabled members of the Armed Forces who live in New York’s Lower Hudson Valley; in Bergen County, N.J.; and in Fairfield County, Conn.
A Dec. 8 news announcement of the grant pointed out that sports and recreation activities can improve quality of life for veterans experiencing mobility and emotional challenges.
The BRAVE program will offer 13 adaptive sports/recreational activities for veterans to choose from: archery, ATV riding, bowling, boxing, golf, hand cycling, hiking, kayaking, rock climbing, sailing, snow skiing, waterskiing, and virtual relaxation/meditation and yoga.
Therapeutic Recreation Director Eileen Andreassi said in the announcement, “The BRAVE Program showcases a broad selection of sports that will be of interest to both active and more inactive veterans who want to engage with other veterans, challenge themselves, and satisfy physical, mental, and social needs. Each event is adapted with specialized equipment and participatory styles so veterans with almost any type of diagnosis and ability level will be able to successfully participate.”
Funding from the grant will pay for a dedicated Adapted Sports Director and a dedicated recreational therapist, as well as adaptive sports equipment and transportation for athletes.