17 Dec Local Charity for December 18-23: Disabled Athlete Sports Association
All of those who live with a physical, visual disability or deaf or hard of hearing will be given the opportunity to participate in sports and fitness activities designed to improve self-esteem, growth and well-being while instilling family values.
The Disabled Athlete Sports Association (DASA) is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization specializing in therapeutic sport and fitness opportunities. The athletes of DASA will be encouraged to seek their highest level of independence and become involved to the fullest extent with their non-disabled peers and their community as a whole. Our programs introduce both children and adults to sports and fitness activities that promote physical fitness, self-confidence, family values, and a positive, team-building environment designed to encourage personal growth throughout all aspects of life
Motivational Opportunities and Rehabilitative Exercise (M.O.R.E.)
The M.O.R.E. concept is a strategy DASA utilizes to promote overall health and wellness, improve strength and endurance, and enhance learning best practices for daily functional activities such as transfers and chair mobility, among other abilities necessary for increased independence and a higher quality of life.
Through involvement in sport and fitness, clients/athletes decrease the risk of common ailments – such as pressure sores, bladder infections, weight gain, or loss of strength and endurance – all associated with a sedentary lifestyle or the result of a lack of necessary therapy that is vital to staying fit.
DASA hopes to encourage a holistic, healthy lifestyle through a family-friendly environment implemented by the M.O.R.E. concept, and therefore empower individuals with physical disabilities to live to the best of their natural abilities with greater emotional and physical well-being.
DASA recruits cognitively age-appropriate individuals 5 years of age and older living with permanent physical, visual, and hearing disabilities who have difficulty participating in sports with their non-disabled peers.
DASA Athletes’ Disabilities vary, but include:
- Cerebral Palsy
- Spinal Cord Injury
- Spina Bifida
- Muscular Dystrophy
- Deaf, or Hard of Hearing
- Visual Impairment
In 1997, Kelly Behlmann gave physical therapy to children with disabilities. Kelly dreamed of providing an affordable service to her kiddos that emphasized the abilities each child had rather than focusing on their disabilities.
What began as a dream has gone far beyond anything Kelly could have EVER imagined. While DASA maintains its original goals and core values, the organization has since expanded into a successful sports club, grooming national champions, international record-breakers, and Paralympic gold-medalists. Along the way, DASA has also started community education programs, personal care training, and social outlets for youth with disabilities – as well as their families!