Funding for Projects that Improve Lives

From coordinating workshops for health professionals to producing educational materials to sponsoring fellowships in spinal cord medicine, the Paralyzed Veterans of America Education Foundation helps develop tools that share spinal cord injury and disease (SCI/D) knowledge and improve the lives of those with SCI/D. Since inception in 1986 we have funded 260 grants totalling $9,597,518. The Education Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, provides funding in four project categories:

  • Consumer and community education to improve the health, independence and quality of life for individuals with SCI/D
  • Professional development and education to improve the knowledge and competencies of health professionals who serve the SCI/D community, including fellowship and traineeship programs
  • Research translation, projects that move research findings into practical application
  • Conferences and symposia that provide education and collaboration opportunities for members of the SCI/D community

Funded Program Highlight: SCI Fragments

Cathy Craven, University Health Network, University of Toronto, Grant #867

Dr. Craven created a series of podcasts to help raise awareness about what people with lived experience with spinal cord injury/disease can do to maintain their bone mass and prevent lower extremity fractures. There are 9 podcast episodes and associated handouts that touch on a variety of topics such as Bone Research, Fractures, and the use of Vitamin D and Calcium. Learn more on their website,

Funded Program Highlight: Healthcare Provider Education in Preventing Community-acquired Pressure Injury in SCI

PVA Education Foundation funded project, “Healthcare Provider Education in Preventing Community-acquired Pressure Injury in SCI”, by Dr. Elizabeth Burkhart, developed an educational curriculum for healthcare providers to better understand the nature of pressure injury prevention and how to address challenges and barriers Veterans experience in the community. The resulting curriculum includes presentations within 5 modules:

  • Module 1: Community-Acquired Pressure Injury (CAPrI) Prevention Clinical Guidelines for the Provider
  • Module 2: Veteran Perspective of CAPrI Prevention
  • Module 3: Building Collaborative Relationships between Provider and Veteran through Engagement and Veteran Value Integration
  • Module 4: Resources Used in CAPrI prevention
  • Module 5: A Team Approach to CAPrI Prevention

Before You Apply

The Education Foundation is focused on funding educational projects that benefit and serve individuals with SCI/D, their families and caregivers.  The Education Foundation has five topic categories for funding consideration which are: Consumer, Caregiver, and Community Education; Professional Development and Education; Research Utilization and Dissemination; and Conferences and Symposia.  These projects should be designed to improve the quality of life for individuals with SCI/D, educate consumers about the consequences of and complications associated with SCI/D, improve the knowledge and skills of SCI/D health care professionals and to prevent the occurrence and complications of new SCI/D.

Before submitting a grant application, carefully read the Education Foundation’s Policies and Procedures as policies may change from year to year.

Application Process

  • Application Period Opens: September 1, 2023
  • Application Period Closes: December 1, 2023
  • Award Notification: No later than April 30, 2024
  • Grant Start Date: June 1, 2024

Eligibility Requirements

Eligible applicants should be members of academic institutions, health care providers and organizations, or consumer advocates and organizations. Grantee institutions must be located in the United States or Canada. However, project directors and fellows are not required to be U.S. or Canadian citizens.

All applications must be submitted in the name of the project director by the fiscally responsible organizational entities. Each application must be endorsed by the organization’s signing official (the person responsible for organizational approval).

Review Process

Foundation staff will review applications for compliance with Foundation guidelines. The Education Foundation Board of Directors will evaluate applications for merit and relevance and make the final funding decisions.

Education Foundation Board

Robert Thomas, Chairman; Washington, DC

Charles Brown, Vice-Chairman; Washington

Shaun Castle, Executive Director; Washington, DC

Cheryl Vines, Secretary; Washington, DC

Cheryl Topping, Treasurer; Washington, DC

Heidi Maloni; Washington, DC

Joel Kupersmith; Washington DC

Ann Adair; Reisterstown, Maryland,

Izzy Abbass; Denver Colorado

Matthew Peeling,  Glen Burnie, Maryland

Robert Clinton; Edmonds, Washington


Contact Us

For questions on the Paralyzed Veterans of America Education Foundation, contact:

Lindsay Perlman
Associate Director, Research and Education

Additional Resources