DOVER-FOXCROFT - The Physically Challenged Club, an all-volunteer program provided through a collaborative effort of the Piscataquis Regional YMCA and Mayo Regional Hospital, has been selected by the Maine Governor's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports as the winner of a 2002 Contest for Communities Award in the "special populations" program category.
The Council sponsors the annual contest to recognize communities, organizations, schools and individuals throughout the state for the role they play in supporting a healthy Maine through physical fitness and activity programs.
The Physically Challenged Club will be one of six award winners recognized at a celebration at the State House Hall of Flags in Augusta on May 15 from 2-4 p.m.
Accepting the award will be Fran Moore, Mayo's manager of Rehabilitation Services, who developed the program in 1988 in order to provide opportunities for the chronically disabled to continue rehab after their insurance benefits end. Club members use the YMCA pool each Monday and the fitness room on Wednesdays, under supervision of a physical therapist and trained volunteers.
The Physically Challenged Club has approximately 75 members who are active on a weekly basis and 10-12 community volunteers who assist with personal care and exercise. Most participants are Mayo patients who are referred by a physician from Rehabilitation Services to the YMCA.
"The collaboration between Mayo and the YMCA is an outstanding example of how innovative programs can be delivered in a rural area," said Mayo CEO Ralph Gabarro is his letter nominating the program for the statewide award. "We believe the most effective way to meet the health and wellness needs of our community is to partner with other service providers whenever it is appropriate."
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