March of Dimes Canada invests to advance research in acquired brain injury at University of Toronto

June 18th, 2014
Today, March of Dimes Canada and the University of Toronto (U of T) signed a $1.5 million agreement to advance research in recovery from brain injuries and stroke, making the donation to the University the largest made by the national charitable organization in its over 60 year history.

Brain injuries and stroke affect 80,000 to 100,000 Canadians every year and are the leading cause of disability worldwide. Survivors often have difficulties with daily activities and participating in their communities due to mobility, communication, cognitive and perceptual impairments, and only about half are able to return to work. With this donation, March of Dimes Canada is acting on its mission to "maximize the independence, personal empowerment and community participation of people with physical disabilities" by establishing the March of Dimes Canada Early Career Professorship in U of T's Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy.

"This is the first major partnership we have with a university and we are excited at the prospect of working with the selected faculty member, with graduate students and with the wider university network to benefit Canadians with disabilities as it relates to our mission," said Andria Spindel, President and CEO of March of Dimes Canada.

The March of Dimes Canada Early Career Professorship will provide a faculty member in the early stages of her or his research career with a well-established framework for investigating interventions and pathways to increase the independence and social integration of brain injury survivors. The professorship will also provide research evidence to enhance existing March of Dimes Canada programs, which serve more than 60,000 Canadians annually.

"We are thrilled and proud to be the recipient of this landmark gift by March of Dimes Canada," says Dr. Susan Rappolt, Chair of U of T's Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy. "This professorship creates tremendous capacity for new scientific evidence to improve the quality of life and productivity of individuals with acquired brain injuries and their families through new opportunities for training students and collaborating with our partners across the Rehabilitation Sector."

The University of Toronto's rehabilitation scientists and practitioners work collaboratively to translate new research evidence into therapies that help individuals with brain injuries capitalize on their post-injury strengths to get them out of the hospital and back into their roles in their communities. The Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy is an international leader in research on acquired brain injuries at the individual, community and societal levels.

Provided by University of Toronto

This Science News Wire page contains a press release issued by an organization mentioned above and is provided to you “as is” with little or no review from Phys.Org staff.

More news stories

After a reset, Сuriosity is operating normally

NASA's Curiosity rover is busy making new discoveries on Mars. The rover has been climbing Mount Sharp since 2014 and recently reached a clay region that may offer new clues about the ancient Martian environment's potential ...

Study: With Twitter, race of the messenger matters

When NFL player Colin Kaepernick took a knee during the national anthem to protest police brutality and racial injustice, the ensuing debate took traditional and social media by storm. University of Kansas researchers have ...

Researchers engineer a tougher fiber

North Carolina State University researchers have developed a fiber that combines the elasticity of rubber with the strength of a metal, resulting in a tougher material that could be incorporated into soft robotics, packaging ...