Walk On is vital in the progress of breaking down barriers.
Mr Shorten quotes Professor John Steeves, Chair of the International Collaboration for Repair Discoveries and the global expert in all aspects of spinal cord injury:
“whilst not the cure for spinal cord injury, there are a lot of results which have been achieved through (engaging in) activity dependent rehabilitation.”
The Walk On program has been piloted in Brisbane since May 2008. It is an intensive exercise recovery program which offers a path to maximising functional recovery for people with spinal cord injuries. It is directly based upon the Project Walk methodology, which has been offered in the United States since 1999. In Project Walk’s experience, the earlier an intensive recovery strategy is commenced after injury, the greater the opportunity for advancing recovery.
L-R Bill Shorten MP, Parliamentary Secretary for Children’s and Disability Services and SCA director David Prast.
In a little over one year we have seen some amazing results, not only in our client’s physical abilities but also in their mental and emotional wellbeing. We believe Walk On truly saves lives and we are committed to providing this life changing program to Australian’s everywhere, with the first official launch starting in Sydney, NSW in November. We expect to be able have Walk On operating in every state of Australia by the end of 2012; giving every single Australian with a spinal cord injury the opportunity to maximise their recovery.
L-R: SCA’s Leah Mayne and Chair Joanna Knott with supporter, Michelle Lindley
At the Opera House launch joined by 100 attendees, Bill Shorten, Parliamentary Secretary for Children’s and Disability Services acknowledged the marginalisation of people with spinal cord injury, and that a program such as Walk On is vital in the progress of breaking down barriers.
“I do accept that intensive treatment as soon after an injury can dramatically improve the quality of life (for person living with a spinal cord injury) and indeed reduce the cost to the community. I believe that Walk On has great potential for some of those 10,000 Australian’s affected by spinal cord injury,“ said Shorten.
Shorten continues “ …Listening to Nathan it shows what it means to fight overwhelming odds especially if you have a little help. … small victories and improvements are actually remarkable accomplishments. Being able to drive a car again, being able to hold your child, ski, [or] being able to do just simple things such as cleaning your teeth or brushing your hair, I think these make huge differences to a persons self esteem and their quality of life.”
Shorten adds, “I acknowledge that since May 2008 there has been progress through Walk On Brisbane, and participants have experienced some outstanding stories of recovery.”
Shorten quotes Professor John Steeves, Chair of the International Collaboration for Repair Discoveries and the global expert in all aspects of spinal cord injury, “whilst not the cure for spinal cord injury, there are a lot of results which have been achieved through [engaging in] ‘activity dependent rehabilitation’ …You have to go undergo the movement and make the effort, and once you make the effort all kind of things can happen. This related to a majority of problems raised by people with SCI – to nerve regeneration to assistance with pressure sores. In most cases of spinal cord injury, the individual still has some preserved function, some level of movement, some sensation below the level of injury. We can use that residual preserved function to improve with activity, functional outcomes thereafter.”
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Email: Walk On Recovery Project
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