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Activist Isabella Sementilli

Rising Above Her Disabilities, One Advocate Boosts Anti-Bullying Message for National Stop Bullying Day

October 13, 2021 Activist Isabella Sementilli shares her message of kindness and how someone can be “One Tough Cookie.”

By Jessica Ganga

 

Isabella Sementilli’s life changed in an instant. At age 10, Isabella went from care-free days filled with tap dancing classes and tennis lessons to days taken up by doctors’ visits and MRIs. Her health and life were affected by a bully who yanked her chair out from under her. Today, she lives with New Daily Persistent Headache (NDPH) and Occipital Neuralgia (ON) — debilitating headache disorders and invisible disabilities. But Isabella didn’t let the “unkind actions” of the bully get in her way.

Now, Isabella is an anti-bullying advocate and author, having written and illustrated her own book titled, The Short Story of One Tough


Jamil Williams - Life at Kessler Foundation Podcast

Learning about disability while contributing to spinal cord injury research

October 11, 2021

National Disability Employment Awareness Month takes place each October to celebrate the contributions of people with disabilities to workplaces across the country. In recognition, Kessler Foundation shares the story of Jamil Williams, who recently marked his one-year anniversary as a Kessler Foundation employee.

 

 

Williams, who has lived with a spinal cord injury since 2002 — and doesn’t allow his injury to hold him back — joined Kessler Foundation in August 2020 as a research assistant in our Center for Spinal Cord Injury Research. Before becoming a Foundation employee, Williams joined in several Foundation studies as a participant. Now as an employee, he is helping conduct life-changing research for others with spinal cord injury —


Alder Crocker painting in a studio

One More Day to Collect Art and Change Lives!

October 6, 2021

Our virtual auction featuring the artwork of Alder Crocker is live for just ONE MORE DAY! Support Kessler Foundation before it is too late! Alder has generously donated one of his original paintings to support Kessler Foundation. Hatter’s Playground is valued at $3,500 and bids are currently at $550! Remember that 100% of support from this auction benefits the work we do and proves that abilities—not disabilities—are what matter.

ONE MORE DAY TO PLACE YOUR BID HERE AND SUPPORT KESSLER FOUNDATION!

 

 

Alder Crocker, a spinal cord and traumatic brain injury survivor, proves through


Alder Crocker

Art Auction Extended Through 10/7

September 30, 2021

Our virtual auction featuring the artwork of Alder Crocker HAS BEEN EXTENDED THROUGH OCTOBER 7! Support Kessler Foundation today and add to your collection while you still can. Alder has generously donated one of his original paintings to support Kessler Foundation. Hatter’s Playground is valued at $3,500 and bids start at just $500! 100% of support from this auction benefits the work we do and proves that abilities—not disabilities—are what matter.

PLACE YOUR BID HERE AND SUPPORT KESSLER FOUNDATION TODAY!

Alder Crocker, a spinal cord and traumatic brain injury survivor, proves through


2021 Stroll 'N Roll starting line group photo

Thank You for an Amazing Hybrid Stroll 'N Roll!

September 27, 2021

Many thanks for a successful and special day! People of all ages and abilities gathered in Verona Park and their own neighborhoods on Sunday, September 26, 2021, for Kessler Foundation’s first-ever hybrid Stroll ‘N Roll. Together we proved that abilities are what matter.

With the generosity of champions like you, we raised $198,500 – and still counting – toward our goal of $200,000. Every dollar advances rehabilitation research and employment for people with disabilities.

Inspiring leaders created teams of champions to give back. We are incredibly proud to congratulate Cherie Giraud, who raised funds in memory of Matt and John Giraud, as our top fundraiser, and


Stroll 'N Roll group photo

Today’s the Day – Time to Stroll ‘N Roll!

September 24, 2021

The day has finally arrived: our best—and first—hybrid Stroll ‘N Roll!

If you haven't already, you can still register for Stroll 'N Roll today. Join us in Verona Park and make a gift of $25 or more to receive a Stroll ‘N Roll t-shirt!

Here are the details about today’s family-fun event:

Date and time: Sunday, September 26, from 10 am to 1 pm

Location: Verona Park in Verona, NJ or in your own neighborhood with your friends and family!

We’ve got a fun-filled day lined up with food trucks, music, magic, games, crafts, and a stroll or roll around Verona Park, or participate virtually.

Be


Alder Crocker painting in a studio

7 days left! Change Lives and Collect Art!

September 23, 2021

The virtual auction featuring the artwork of Alder Crocker is open now through September 30th – bid now while there is still time! Alder has generously donated one of his original paintings to Kessler Foundation and 100% of the support from this auction benefits Kessler Foundation and proves that abilities—not disabilities—are what matter.

VISIT OUR ONLINE AUCTION SITE HERE AND PLACE YOUR BID TODAY! ONLY 7 DAYS LEFT!

Alder Crocker, a spinal cord and traumatic brain injury survivor, proves through his paintings that abilities are what matter.

 

 

 


Taking Time for Ourselves and One Another

Resource Refresh: Taking Time for Ourselves and One Another – Lessons from the Pandemic

September 22, 2021

By Karen Tiseo

 

Six years ago, my husband John had a near-fatal motorcycle accident resulting in a severe traumatic brain injury. When the pandemic began, we realized the stress of isolation and fear of the virus affected our emotional and physical health. We used the time to nurture ourselves and reflect on our lives more deeply. My attitude about what is important to me has changed, and I have incorporated this new perspective into my life in the form of healthy daily habits.

One of my pre-pandemic habits was to drag chores that I don’t like doing into an all-day event. Now I am motivated to complete these tasks quickly. Spending less time on chores leaves me time to explore new hobbies like knitting or gardening. When I’m really having trouble getting


Stroll 'N Roll group photo

Get Ready for Our Hybrid Stroll 'N Roll!

September 21, 2021

Only two more days until our best—and first—hybrid Stroll 'N Roll! We are expecting a beautiful day in Verona Park this Sunday and we hope the weather will be just as a great wherever you are strolling and rolling with us.

Our goal for this year is to raise $200,000 and thanks to friends like you, we have already raised nearly $190,000!

If you haven't already, register for Stroll 'N Roll today. Join us in Verona Park and make a gift of $25 or more to receive a Stroll 'N Roll t-shirt!

Here are the details about our family-fun event:

Date and time: Sunday, September 26, from 10 am to 1 pm

Location: Verona Park in


Stroll 'N Roll group photo

ONE WEEK Away...

September 18, 2021

The countdown begins for our best—and first hybrid Stroll ‘N Roll on Sunday, September 26 from 10 am to 1 pm in Verona Park and virtually, from your own neighborhood. Our goal for this year is to raise $200,000 and with ONE WEEK left until our family-fun event, we have already raised over $179,000!

If you haven’t already, register for Stroll ‘N Roll today and form a team with your friends and family. Every dollar you give or raises changes lives for people with disabilities and proves that abilities are what matter.

Be sure to join our


Alder Crocker

Collect Art and Change Lives! Bid Now!

September 17, 2021

This month, Kessler Foundation has launched a virtual auction featuring the artwork of Alder Crocker. He has generously donated one of his original paintings to Kessler Foundation. 100% of the support from this auction benefits Kessler Foundation and proves that abilities—not disabilities—are what matter.

VISIT OUR ONLINE AUCTION SITE HERE AND PLACE YOUR BID TODAY!

 

 

Alder Crocker, a spinal cord and brain injury survivor, proves through his art that abilities are what matter.

 

 

The support from friends like you champions rehabilitation research and employment for


Cherie Giraud holding her dog, Lucy

Have You Formed Your Stroll 'N Roll Team?

September 15, 2021

It's not too late to be champion for people with disabilities by forming a team with your friends and family and joining us at our best—and first—hybrid Stroll ‘N Roll on Sunday, September 26 from 10 am to 1 pm in Verona Park, and virtually, from your own neighborhoods.

Cherie Giraud, pictured on the right with her dog, Lucy, is a member of our Stroll ‘N Roll committee and led the way at last year’s virtual Stroll ‘N Roll by becoming one of our top fundraisers and forming a team in memory of her husband, John, and stepson, Matt, who enjoyed attending our event year after year.

Register and form your team today and join Cherie and Lucy in raising funds to advance


Rosalie Hannigan and her husband at Stroll 'N Roll

This is How We (Stroll 'N) Roll—And Why

September 1, 2021

Our best—and first—hybrid Stroll ‘N Roll is just around the corner! On Sunday, September 26, join strollers and rollers like Rosalie Hannigan in raising vital funds to advance rehabilitation research and employment for people with disabilities.

Rosalie, pictured here with her husband, is a long-time supporter of Kessler Foundation who lives with a spinal cord injury and proves that abilities are what matter.

After her injury, Rosalie was treated at Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation and continued her journey to recovery by participating in several Kessler Foundation research studies.

Today, Rosalie continues to be a champion for Kessler Foundation by


Summer TBI Newsletter 2021

Caregiver Corner: Team Dan – Caregiving for a Lifetime of Need after Brain Injury

August 9, 2021

By Justin Gelman, Research Assistant, Center for Traumatic Brain Injury Research, Kessler Foundation 

On March 8, 2016, Melissa Moore took her dog on a morning walk before heading to her next shift as an OR nurse. She saw some police cars up the road, but did not think much of it -- until an officer approached her, asking if she knew a Daniel Moore.  As she explained that he was her son, the officer delivered devastating news. Daniel was in a car accident and was being rushed to the hospital where he was diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury.

It would be hours before Melissa could see him and even longer before he regained consciousness. 

Melissa sat by his bed and played his favorite song repeatedly. After ten long days, Daniel began mouthing


Dr. Nancy Chiaravalloti with her mom

Your Support Heals and Inspires This Mother's Day

May 4, 2021

In celebration of Mother’s Day, we share how Kessler Foundation researcher Nancy Chiaravalloti, PhD, Director of the Center for Neuropsychology and Neuroscience Research and Center for Traumatic Brain Injury Research, is finding ways to delay cognitive decline in older adults, like her mom, who are living with memory loss.

Dr. Chiaravalloti and her team developed a noninvasive treatment, the Modified Story Memory Technique (mSMT), to improve memory in people living with multiple sclerosis or traumatic brain