The InSider
Are We a Minority or a Community?

Each month I write about something that our chapter has been involved in or an issue that we have been asked to help resolve. Well, this month I’m going to enter the world of controversy and write about something that has bothered me for some time. A term that many sources of media have for years, molded like clay, into a less than positive image.

When a group of people that share some commonality are referred to as a minority, they are often looked upon with disdain, some questioning their value to society. Though this may seem like a harsh statement, I've personally witnessed it many times over the years. However, when this same group is referred to as a community, the general feel is one of positive well being and something that is good. So, the real question is, are we, the disability community, really a community or are we a minority? Or better yet, are we a little both.

When I'm speaking or writing and refer to the disability community, it is with intent to place our community in a positive light to those around us, to better integrate our community with the able-bodied community. I want to tear down the stereotype, that those with a disability are not a productive and important part of society. This stereotype still exists, though to a lesser degree than in the past, largely in part to people being out there, to television and movies being inclusive, to the pioneers that still forge new and exciting pathways in life that demonstrate the awesome integrity and strength of those with a disability, which by the way is another word that could us an upgrade...but until we come up with a really cool name we'll just go with it.

So, let's build a community!

Whew, glad to get that off of my

I'd love to hear your take on it, send along any comments or suggestions for future topics. Send them along to Rick


Rick Hayden
Executive Director
Our Newsletter Has a Name, The Insider
This is where you catch the inside scoop ahead of the mainstream, but Sshh it's a secret :)
Peer Mentor Training is Almost Here
On August 15th we will host, along with United Spinal and the Student Ability Success Center at SDSU, a Peer Mentor training. The training runs from 10 - 4 and will take place at SDSU (information will be sent to all that register), lunch will be provided. Lindsey Elliott of United Spinal will travel from the east coast to conduct the program. Lindsey has trained hundreds of peer mentors across the country. Space is limited, so if you are interested in attending please click on the link ot register. 
Register for Our October Workshop "Trending Topics for
Living with SCI/D"
On October 19th we will host our 2nd annual workshop titled "Trending Topics for Living with SCI/D". This workshop will be a bit different than our last, we will have a keynote speaker as well as two panel discussion groups. Our keynote will talk about "Advocacy and Self Advocacy" while the panels will discuss "Life Skills and Independence" and "Ability and Aging". The details of the workshop as well as the registration form can be found by clicking on the link below.
Thrive Worldwide 2019 is Set for December 3rd
Last year to commemorate the International Day of People with Disabilities, we celebrated #ThriveWorldwide 2018 at Sharp Rehab with about 25 people. Hydred Makabali shared with us her journey of living life with a spinal cord injury.

On December 3rd of this year to commemorate the International Day of People with Disabilities, we will again celebrate #ThriveWorldwide. However this year we hope to be in the downtown San Diego area. Who will be the guest speaker? Well we need to leave some mystery. All will be revealed in next months newsletter so keep a lookout for it.
The First Meeting of the InterAbled Couples was a Huge Success
So now what? Well a second gathering of course. Join Tim and Cerrah on August 31st as they hang out in a casual setting and talk about interabled life. Join in the conversation or simply sit back and take it all in.

Please RSVP via email so we can plan accordingly:

If you have a question or would like more information, please reach out.

When: Sunday, August 31st at 5pm
Where: The Blarney Stone
5617 Balboa Ave.
San Diego 92111
September and October Are Months to Celebrate
A lot of celebration to be had, September is National Spinal Cord Injury Awareness month and in October we get a two'fer with the National Spina Bifida Awareness month and National Disability Employment Awareness month. Visit our website during September and October to see how we're planning to celebrate.
Do You Live in Riverside County?
What would you like to see from our chapter, what topics for the Meet and Greet? What services are you looking for? Email Rick at and we'll try to connect you with the services you need or to find a speaker on the subject that your interested in.
Warren White, Our New Chapter President
Warren is 60 years old with a zest for life. In 2016 he was injured as a passenger in a car accident which resulted in a C-4/5 complete spinal cord injury. As a glass half full person, he is learning new and exciting things every day, and welcomes any advice from the community on how to move around this new world of his.

Warren grew up in a small town in New Jersey, and went on to be a CYO regional state champion in wrestling. He attended San Diego State University to pursue his love for acting, working towards a degree in Theater and Arts. Warren later moved to New York City where he did some off Broadway for 4 years, eventually moving back to Southern California in 1989.

For the last 30 years, he has been an accomplished VP/Partner in a prestigious global Executive Search Firm where he works with Fortune Companies (ie: Amazon, Sony, to name a few) around the globe assisting with high level employee search projects. Upon returning to work, Warren thrived with the help of his previous employer/mentor/boss, Purcell International Group, which set him up with complete home automation office. Since his injury Warren has greatly appreciated all of the help and mentoring from people within the spinal cord injury community, and he is truly devoted to giving back to that community. He feels truly blessed to be able to still live life to the fullest and he is excited to be a part of the Southern California Chapter of the United Spinal Association where he hopes he can mentor others in their recovery by sharing his experience mentally and physically.
Why Should I Join the Chapter
Are there really benefits to joining the Southern California Chapter? Well let's see if I can't share a few of these benefits:

* membership is free
* free subscription to New Mobility magazine
* peer support
* employment preparedness workshops
* rehab professional workshops
* access to your local disability community
* access to resources through the national organization such as advocacy and policy, veterans benefits counseling, webinars and access to the national spinal network

Our membership community provides a lifeline for many individuals that are focused on regaining their independence and improving their quality of life––whether they are leaving rehab after sustaining a spinal cord injury, learning to live with symptoms of a spinal cord disorder, or have spent years of frustration coping with disability. We provide members guidance and resources  with regards to education and employment.Through our Meet and Greets we share a community that shows that life continues and continues in a positive and deeply enriching way. Independence and a good quality of life are just around the corner. Join us as we journey forward.
What will my show of support provide?
So, I’ll bet you’d like to know how your contribution will help and what it will provide. Whether it’s a one-time donation or a monthly show of support, your contribution will help fund one of our many programs, such as our Employment Preparedness Workshop Series or our Peer Support/Mentoring Program. These programs have a significant impact on the lives of our community as they move forward along their journey towards independence. Together we can make this happen.

We will be adding a support group in the Beaumont/Banning area as well as the Temecula/Murrieta valley. We want to reach out to those who require our services, but we can only do this with your help. Please consider supporting our vision so we can continue to impact our community.

Upcoming Events
Men's SCI Support Group at Sharp Rehab in San Diego on the third Monday of every month, 4 - 5:30
August 13th - Meet & Greet at Sharp Rehab in San Diego from 11:30 - 1
August 15th - Peer Mentor Training at SDSU from 10 - 4, must register
August 20th - Meet & Greet in Riverside from 11:30 - 1
August 21st - Employment Preparedness workshop, San Diego 11:00 - 1
September 10th - Meet & Greet at Sharp Rehab in San Diego from 11:30 - 1
October 8th - Meet & Greet at Sharp Rehab in San Diego from 11:30 - 1
October 15th - Meet and Greet in Riverside from 11:30 - 1
October 19th - Rehab Professional Seminar in San Diego from 7:45 - 1
November 12th - Meet & Greet at Sharp Rehab in San Diego from 11:30 - 1
November 19th - Meet and Greet in Riverside from 11:30 - 1
November 20th - Employment Preparedness workshop, Corona City Hall from 11:00 - 1
December 3rd - Thrive Worldwide 2019 will be held downtown San Diego
December 10th - Meet & Greet at Sharp Rehab in San Diego from 11:30 - 1
December 17th - Meet & Greet in Riverside from 11:30 - 1
Southern California Chapter
an affiliate of the United Spinal Association
Tel: 951-775-2561