A new spinal cord injury group in Naples is gathering steam, with weekly and monthly events to keep members busy and its first major fund-raising effort in the works.
“We are here for anyone with any spinal debilitation that would cause a change in their quality of life,” said Mindy Idaspe, group founder.
Idaspe is a quadriplegic as the result of a spinal cord injury.
“I started the group because I want to help others like me. When something like this happens to you, it can be very isolating,” said Idaspe, 40, who worked as a nurse before her injury and is a mother of two.
The Spinal Cord Group of Collier County meets from 5 to 6:30 p.m. the first Thursday of the month at the Telford Education Building at Naples Community Hospital. This Thursday, a representative from the Collier County Sheriff’s Office will give a presentation on crime prevention and self defense for the physically disabled.
Every Tuesday from 3 to 5 p.m. there’s spinal cord group bowling at Strikes and Spares, 1600 Luckey Lane off Golden Gate Parkway near Goodlette-Frank Road. The lanes are adapted to that even those in wheelchairs can bowl. “Everybody can bowl. We have great fun,” Idaspe said.
Every Thursday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. the group meets for therapeutic and recreational arts and crafts in classrooms at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church. “We are creating for ourselves and for others. We also get the therapeutic benefit,” Idaspe said.
The upcoming fund-raiser, planned for March 20, is a Bowl-A-Thon at Strikes and Spares. Anyone can bowl for a pledge of at least $25. Bob “Bullet” Turley, a former pitcher with the New York Yankees, will be on hand to sign autographs.
To find out more about the fund-raiser or any of the regular meetings, call Idaspe at 825-9999 or Connie Harvey at 304-0798. Tax-deductible donations can be mailed to 1395 Panther Lane, Suite 300, Naples, 34109.
Naples Daily News – By BETH FRANCIS
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