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Wanna hear some great news? The 8th annual “Mardi Gras” of the Greater New York Chapter of the National Spinal Cord Injury Association (NYCSCIA) was a big success! It raised $35,000 to help people with spinal cord injuries. We’re so proud to have sponsored the event on February 21 at New York City’s exclusive SLATE Nightclub. Thanks to all who came out, showed your support…and had a fantastic time, too!
“This was our most successful event in the eight years that we’ve been holding the Mardi Gras — and everyone had a great time!” said James Cesario, Founding President of NYCSCIA and SCI Outreach Coordinator at The Mount Sinai Rehabilitation Center. “It was a wonderful coming together of people from all facets of life – wheelers, therapists, doctors, and businessmen – joining to help people with spinal cord injury and other disabilities.”

During the event, NYCSCIA presented a $10,000 grant to Wheels of Progress, which is an organization that creates accessible supportive housing and provides transformative environments, education, and experiences for people living with a spinal cord injury or other physical disabilities. NYCSCIA also honored Dr. Kristjian T. Ragnarsson, Chairman of the Department of Rehabilitative Medicine at Mount Sinai, with its Humanitarian of the Year Award. He was recognized as a pioneer in the rehabilitation of people with spinal cord injuries. In conjunction with the award, NYCSCIA contributed $5,000 to the Life Challenge Program (an outdoor adventure program that challenges persons with spinal cord injuries) and $5,000 to the Mount Sinai Ekso Bionics Program (a program that utilizes cutting-edge robotic exoskeletons to assist persons with spinal cord injury to ambulate).

Mardi Gras

On the entertainment side of the event, “sit-down comedian” Damon Rosier revved up the crowd. And four-wheel rapper “TapWaterz” was a big hit; he has performed with Snoop Dogg and is part of 4 Wheel City (an organization that uses hip-hop music and culture to create opportunities and inspiration for the disabled). TapWaterz and Damon were both rehabilitated at Mount Sinai.

It’s amazing what we can accomplish together!
Photos courtesy of Mike Lampert.