I am very excited to let you know that the applications for the 2018 Ataxian Athlete Initiative (AAI) are online and open for you to get started! Just visit curefa.org/aai and click on the tab that says "Apply for an AAI Grant". Once you get to the application, read all the instructions thoroughly and take your time. Due to limited resources, we will likely not be able to fund every application and the more thought and care you put into your application, the more competitive it will be.
The deadline for submission is June 4. However, don't delay your research on your equipment. One of the most important parts of the application is taking a test-ride, selecting your equipment, and describing your reasons for choosing that equipment. It may take a few weeks to find a dealer, set up an appointment, and arrange a test-ride. Sometimes the closest dealer is several hours away. We mainly deal with two brands: Catrike (catrike.com) for trikes, and Top End (topendwheelchair.com) for handcycles, so check out their websites to find the closest dealer or disabled sports program for a test-ride. We would like to stick with these two strong partners, however if you have a compelling reason that you need a different piece of equipment, write about it in your application and the review committee will take it into consideration.
If the adaptive cycling world is new to you, please do not be intimidated. I wrote a blog post about the main things to think about when searching for equipment. This is a good place to start, check it out HERE.
Once again, please visit curefa.org/aai for all the details on how to get started and don't hesitate to send an email if you have any questions. The AAI has funded 42 individuals for adaptive cycling equipment since 2009 and we look forward to seeing your application.
This program is possible due to the support of several dedicated sponsors including The Burrows Hill Foundation to Fight Friedreich's Ataxia, Catrike, UVA Sun Systems, The Melting Pot, and Texas Irish Foundation.
See you on the bike trail!