New partnership creates jobs for disabled locally to provide prosthetic limbs for disabled globally

May 16, 2013

SEATTLE, WA - 5/16/2013 Northwest Center and Limbs for U have reached an agreement to create local jobs refurbishing used prosthetic limbs that will bring mobility to people around the world.  This partnership will bring new employees to Northwest Center and increase Limbs for U’s distribution exponentially.

“Northwest Center Assembly & Packaging has a long-standing reputation for commitment to sustainability, effective solutions and high-quality production and Limbs For U offers a unique solution to its clients through limb recycling,” says Richard C. Toms, CEO of Limbs for U.  “Prosthetic users and manufacturers who replace older artificial limbs with newer ones often have no idea of what to do with their outmoded prosthetics, he says. “By partnering with non-profits, corporations and local agencies, Limbs For U secures prosthetic limbs that would otherwise be discarded and refurbish them for reuse.”

Northwest Center’s Assembly & Packaging division will clean, dis-assemble, and catalogue the prosthetic limbs in preparation for their distribution to prosthetic clinics in low-income countries. This will all occur under the direction and guidance of Limbs For U, a Seattle-based non-profit that provides refurbished  limbs for disabled people throughout the world.

“With a 100% inclusive workforce employing people of all abilities, the Northwest Center/ Limbs for U partnership is a natural one,” says Mike Quinn, V.P. for Manufacturing, Production and Assembly at Northwest Center. “In addition to providing increased local employment opportunities for people with disabilities, this new partnership gives more disabled people the mobility they need to lead productive lives, maximizing the impact of both organizations.”

Limbs For U assists individuals in need of a prosthetic limb, who cannot afford all, or part, of their treatment. By linking suppliers of artificial limbs and components with prosthetic clinicians in low-income countries, Limbs For U is able to provide prosthetic limbs worldwide at little to no cost to the recipients.  “Seeing a patient put on their new prosthesis and take those first tentative steps towards mobility, empowerment and independence is like watching a miracle, “ says Dr. Michael Leslie, communications director for Limbs for U.  “It’s what keeps us committed to doing this work.”

Since 1965, Northwest Center has served people with developmental disabilities through inclusive childhood education, early intervention, employment services, and jobs. When people of all abilities work and learn together, everyone benefits.

For more information, contact:

Mike Quinn, VP, NWC, mquinn@nwcenter.org, 206-963-9903 or 206-378-6384
Richard C. Toms, CEO, Limbs For U, rtoms@limbsforu.org, 206-245-5387 or 888-343-5140

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