Meeting the challenges of social integration

155520_10151289781741145_1041395564_nImagine, overnight, being confined to a wheelchair for the rest of your life. This is the reality with which people with spinal cord injuries must deal. Their whole existence is turned upside down without warning. No choice, they must make do. Even common tasks, such as taking a shower, suddenly become a challenge.

Just to meet their basic needs, we must adapt their homes to suit their disability, which requires a large cash outlay because funding is still far from adequate. If as individuals we fail to meet our basic needs, how then is it possible to grow and lead a fulfilling life? Yet with the right tools, it is possible to greatly improve things thereby realizing small miracles. Did you know that a dance company is bringing together disabled and non-disabled artists to present performances? “Corpuscle Dance” has innovated in this sense in Quebec. Although this model of integrated dance company exists elsewhere in the world, notably in England, prior to France Geoffroy no one had dared implement such a project in Québec. What is most note worthy is that the essence of this company is to link together the mobility disabled with the nondisabled. There are all together, no matter their physical condition. Everyone is participating and benefiting.

“Corpuscle Dance” has turned out to be a small miracle, this company allows the mobility disabled to evolve and grow in this artistic world. The company also produces staged performances with professionals, in addition to teaching the art of dance.

France Geoffroy is at the origin of this wonderful project and her story is most touching. At the age of 17 her life changed following a diving accident. The diagnosis was brutal: she would have to live with reduced mobility for the rest of her life. At that time, France Geoffroy intended to enter a dance program at CEGEP, life, however, seemed to have thrown her on a different path. By sheer strength of determination and courage, she continued to pursue her passion for dance. This ultimately led her to England where she discovered integrated dance. Why did not we this opportunity in Quebec? Why not implement this here? France Geoffroy, accompanied by an English choreographer then returned to Montreal in order to bring forth integrated dance. A few years later, Corpuscule Dance was born.

The success of corpuscle Dance is certainly multifaceted. France Geoffroy never gave up, she had a fighting spirit and she was able to count on the right people to support her. It is a combination of circumstances that have made this project possible. Having won a civil suit following her accident, it remains undeniable that financial support was one of the important factors enabling France Geoffroy to build her dance company. Being financially independent allowed her main focus to be on the dance company rather than on routine tasks such as showering.

Unfortunately, this is not the case for all people affected by spinal cord injuries. Some do not even have the financial resources to adapt their homes. Yet, as illustrated by the example of France Geoffroy, with the right tools, great things can be accomplished thereby enabling individuals to achieve their full potential.
It is precisely for this reason that the Adapte-Toit Foundation exists. Our mission is to help people with spinal cord injuries have facilitated access to their homes, to help them become more independent, to promote their social inclusion and enable them to continue to have an active life. Once these have been accomplished, it becomes much easier to find ones place in society.

If you want to help the spinal cord injured regain their independence and thrive despite their new situation, offer a gift to the Adapte-Toit Foundation.