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Saturday 01/19/2019
Real-life examples of how unique partnerships bring change
Updated: January 21, 2019 - 3:00 am

(BPT) - Most of us can come up with at least one good idea to help solve our community’s most pressing challenges.

Friday 01/18/2019
Tips for travelers with disabilities
Updated: January 21, 2019 - 3:01 am

(BPT) - Traveling, especially during peak times, can come with lots of hassles. Booking a flight, traversing through a packed airport and getting to the gate on time are just a few things that can cause stress. Then there's using those tiny on-board bathrooms, and hoping you get your luggage back in one piece.

Travel is difficult for the average person, but now imagine doing all this in a wheelchair.

“Problems for travelers with disabilities are extremely common,” says Shaun Castle, a service-disabled U.S. Army veteran and deputy executive director of Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA). “By far, the number one complaint that we receive from our members about any issue, is about the problems with air travel.”

Castle has experienced the difficulties firsthand. He has had his wheelchair bent, cracked and even lost in separate incidents.

“These are more than minor inconveniences,” Castle says. “If my wheelchair is damaged, it may mean I am stranded until I can get it repaired.”

But things could be getting better soon for Castle and tens of thousands of travelers with disabilities with the signing of the Federal Aviation Administration Reauthorization Act of 2018 (H.R. 302) by President Donald Trump.

The passage of H.R. 302 provides a “bill of rights” and an advisory panel for passengers with disabilities, as well as revised training and procedures for TSA screenings for people with disabilities.

PVA calls it a matter of basic civil rights and has been a vocal advocate for safer trips for all travelers with disabilities. The congressionally chartered veteran’s service organization even challenged the Department of Transportation in court to move forward with requirements for accessible bathrooms on single-aisle planes.

There are some things travelers with disabilities can do to reduce risks, especially during the busy peak travel times.

Write it down. The group recommends attaching written instructions for folding and stowing directly to wheelchairs and scooters. Many airlines have forms online for passengers to complete.

Plan ahead. Call the airline a week in advance of the flight to confirm special arrangements and call the TSA Cares helpline 72 hours in advance (855-787-2227) for assistance with security.

"This new bill recognizing the rights of travelers with disabilities is a huge move forward, but there's more work to do," says Castle. "Paralyzed Veterans of America will continue to work toward accessibility for all Americans with disabilities."

Check for more tips, resources and to share your travel story.

Flu: The holiday gift no one wants [Infographic]
Updated: January 21, 2019 - 3:00 am

(BPT) - -

Concrete ways to furnish a home
Updated: January 21, 2019 - 2:59 am

(BPT) - From driveways and sidewalks to porches and steps, concrete is the cornerstone of a home’s curb appeal. The same is true in the backyard where patios, fire pits and other concrete features define the value of any outdoor living space. However, in recent years concrete has migrated indoors where homeowners are enjoying the functional beauty of cool, whimsical furnishings, décor and other designer home accessories made from what is traditionally a building material.

Thursday 01/17/2019
7 ways to homegate like a pro
Posted: January 17, 2019

(BPT) - Let’s face it: Few of us will ever actually attend America’s biggest football matchup, but we all love watching and celebrating from home or at a fun gathering with friends.

5 ways to get financially fit this new year
Updated: January 18, 2019 - 2:41 am

(BPT) - In 2019, many Americans are planning for a “better me” in the year ahead. Gym memberships and diets are at the top of many lists, but what about financial health? Losing debt can be just as important as losing pounds, and financial fitness just as important as physical fitness.

Exoskeletons allow stroke and spinal cord injury survivors to take 100 million steps to date
Posted: January 17, 2019

(BPT) - At 32 years of age, Jessica “Jess” McNair experienced what doctors described as “cascades of multiple strokes” resulting from irregularly formed arteries in her neck. With a bleak prognosis, McNair's team of doctors predicted she had a 5 percent chance of living, and that it would be unlikely she would regain the ability to walk, talk or care for herself.

Championing girls’ confidence through puberty and beyond
Posted: January 17, 2019

(BPT) - Puberty is a transformational time for girls that comes with unique challenges in physical, mental and emotional forms. Between trying to manage increasingly complex emotions, adjusting to their evolving bodies and navigating social changes, it’s no wonder half of girls lose confidence at this moment in life — and many never fully recover. This is why it’s crucial to not only educate girls about the changes they’re experiencing, but to actively support them as they develop their confidence.

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