In early October, members of the Eve’s Fund ThinkFirst Navajo team had the honor of attending—and presenting at—the 2014 Southwest Conference on Disability, held in Albuquerque, N.M.
Barbara Crowell Roy, Eve’s Fund president, moderated a roundtable session with five ThinkFirst Navajo VIP speakers (Voices for Injury Prevention). The theme of the presentation was “Improving Quality of Life Through Injury Prevention Education, Inspiration & Experience.”
After giving the history and background of Eve’s Fund and its ThinkFirst Navajo injury prevention program, Roy asked each team member to share how their work—teaching school children how to prevent brain and spinal cord injuries—has improved their own quality of life and given them the courage to advocate for other people living with disabilities.
The VIP speakers, all Navajos with paraplegia who suffered preventable injuries in childhood or as young adults, also talked about the challenges they face on a daily basis, the people who have supported them, and the obstacles they’ve had to overcome to become leaders in injury prevention education.
Expenses for the VIPs (and their personal care assistants) to attend the three-day annual workshop were partially funded by a Quality of Life Grant from the State of New Mexico Governor’s Commission on Disability.
Our ThinkFirst team members were excited and grateful that they could join more than 1,100 participants from all over the country for this important event. We all left energized and hopeful that our important work will continue.