The University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Coast's Toy Library
Center will unveil and demonstrate its new "Tennis Wheelchairs"
at 10 a.m. on June 28 at the tennis courts on the Long Beach campus.
adapted wheelchairs allow people with disabilities to play tennis
without ever leaving their seats.
be wonderful to look out of the windows at TLC and watch children
playing wheelchair tennis on the tennis courts at Southern Miss
Gulf Coast," said Dr. Sara Jackson, director of TLC.
on tennis courts will be a common occurrence in South Mississippi
now that TLC has been given a grant to purchase four new specially
designed tennis wheelchairs."
The Toy Library
Center purchased four of the tennis wheelchairs from Eagle Sportschairs
Inc. through a $35,434 "Recreation Unlimited" grant from
the Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation Services. A specially
adapted golf cart for people with disabilities called the "Model
Tee" was purchased previously with funds from the same grant.
The grant has allowed Southern MissGC to offer the only special
needs services of their kind in the southeastern region of the United
The new tennis
wheelchairs will be free for those with disabilities.
wheelchair sports athlete, Josh Sharpe, a Mississippi native, will
be on hand at the event to demonstrate the specially adapted wheelchair
and the sport of Wheelchair Tennis.
now makes his home in Navarre, Florida, suffered a spinal cord injury
in 1994 as a result of a motor vehicle accident, which rendered
him a paraplegic. Shortly after his paralysis, Sharpe became involved
in wheelchair sports and other organizations that advocate for the
disabled. He participates in several wheelchair sports including,
wheelchair tennis, hand cycling, triathlons, kayaking, rock climbing,
alpine and Nordic skiing and scuba diving.
Sharpe placed sixth in the Sadler Midnight Sun Ultra Challenge -
a 6-day, 267 mile wheelchair and hand cycle race from Fairbanks
to Anchorage, Alaska. The Sadler Midnight Sun Ultra Challenge is
billed as the longest wheelchair race in the world.
For more information
about the Southern MissGC Toy Library and Technology Learning Center,
the Tennis Wheelchairs or the "Recreation Unlimited" Program,
contact Dr. Sara Jackson at (228) 867-2636.