When my dad was first paralyzed, we had no idea what to expect or what our lives were going to be like. Thankfully, my dad and step-mom were able to benefit from the advice of others in their situation and adapt. Now my dad lives an independent life despite not moving 75% of his body. Unfortunately, many of the 1 in 50 Americans living with paralysis (statistic from the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation) live unaware of their potential to live a fulfilling life with a disability.
SPINALpedia.com is a user-generated, how-to video network for people with paralysis and their families to adapt their lives. Users register for an account and specify tags that indicate their relationship to paralysis (person paralyzed, spouse, parent etc.) and the degree of paralysis to help find the most relevant information to adapt their lives. From driving to skydiving, from getting dressed to traveling, all content is organized in categories to help users find what they're looking for and expose them to possibilities they never considered!
In this way, whether you are a paraplegic, or a wife of a quadriplegic, you can find the information you need. We erase geographic barriers, allowing people far away from support groups or programs to still benefit from the support of others in their situation. As one of our users from Germany once said, "I'm living in a small town and so I haven't so much contact to other paraplegic people. With your help I have an alternative."
We currently have over 1,000 members and over 3,000 videos, and we're working hard to expand worldwide to help all people with paralysis and their families adapt their lives.
People like quadriplegic kindergarten teachers and paraplegic skiiers are often seen as anomalies, but with a successful SPINALpedia, we will have more people empowered to adapt their lives and re-enter society as active citizens. In this way, we will slowly break down negative societal perceptions of disability.
Funded by Awesome Without Borders (February 2014)