Camp S.T.A.R. receives Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation Quality of Life grant

April 16, 2004

Hershey, Pa. -- Camp S.T.A.R. (Sports, Teamwork and Recreation), a residential sports camp for young people with disabilities organized by employees of Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, has been awarded a $5,000 Quality of Life grant from the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation (CRPF). Camp S.T.A.R.'s award will be used to purchase specialized sporting equipment, including a racing wheelchair, arm bike, youth javelin and a discus. Any remaining funds will purchase adaptive seats for canoes and kayaks.

"Camp S.T.A.R. provides young adults with physical disabilities in our community the unique opportunity to challenge themselves through sports," said pediatric physical therapist Jen Koonz, a Camp S.T.A.R. counselor. "Funds from the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation finally enable us to buy the adapted equipment we need to expand our program and bring the Camp S.T.A.R. experience to even more central Pennsylvania kids."

The CRPF awarded a total $713,897 in Quality of Life grants to 103 organizations nationwide as part of its 2003 second funding cycle of the Quality of Life Program. Since 1999, CRPF has funded more than $4.2 million in Quality of Life grants to organizations that work to increase opportunities, improve accessibility and enhance the everyday quality of life for those living with disabilities, especially paralysis.

Originally conceived by Dana Reeve, CRPF director and chair of the Quality of Life committee, CRPF's Quality of Life grants are awarded twice yearly and intended to help in such categories as: sports, arts, education, outdoor recreation, advocacy, employment and assistive technology. A unique component of the Quality of Life grants is a category for health promotion, which is funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Health promotion grants essentially work to remove societal and environmental barriers that limit the abilities of paralyzed individuals to participate in everyday activities.

"The Quality of Life grants are designed to substantially improve the lives of people who otherwise could not enjoy the full range of activities that most people take for granted," said Dana Reeve. "Health promotion is also a critical element within the Quality of Life grants program, as it allows people living with disabilities to live independent of obstacles, thus preventing secondary conditions and improving both physical and emotional health and well-being."

For more information about the Quality of Life Program or the grant application process, contact the Quality of Life department at (973) 467-8270, ext. 201. Check the Web at for a complete list of the Second Cycle of 2003 Quality of Life grant recipients.

For more information on Camp S.T.A.R., call Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center at (717) 531-8606.

The Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation (CRFP) is committed to funding research that develops treatments and cures for paralysis caused by spinal cord injury and other central nervous system disorders. The foundation also works to improve the quality of life for people living with disabilities through its grants program, Paralysis Resource Center and advocacy efforts.

Camp S.T.A.R. is a nonprofit, four-day residential sports camp that provides opportunities for young people with disabilities to become involved in a variety of sports and recreational activities. The camp also provides participants with community resources on sports and recreational activities to help them become more involved in their home communities.

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated March 20, 2009