Triumph Foundation Blog

May 2017 eNewsletter

May 26, 2017
May Newsletter
Every GREAT story begins with a hero facing a significant struggle; a challenge that seems insurmountable.  The hero's trial and adversity forces them to learn to adapt. With the help of a mentor they grow and ultimately triumph.  

Read below about the men & women who's stories just began. They just faced their ultimate test, a life-changing traumatic injury.
Your support will help them on their journey towards recovery. Triumph provides the necessary mentorship, guidance, and aid to assist with their transformation and transition back into the community.
When you read about the people you impacted, I hope you feel a sense of pride about what you helped accomplish.  You enable so many heroes to emerge after tragedy. 
Your contributions count, please consider making a gift today:

On behalf of the amazing people your generosity has helped, THANK YOU!

Andrew Skinner
Newly Injured Support

Your support sends Triumph Ambassadors to visit people who've recently had a paralyzing accident to deliver Care Baskets & Backpacks full of resources, provide mentorship, and bring a message of hope.  We are the first line of support to the newly injured person and their family to guide their way. 

Our Ambassador Mickie recently met Nadia who is 17 years old and from war torn Syria. She was hit by a sniper bullet five years ago which left her with a T10 spinal cord injury.We gave her a Care Backpack with resources on opportunities here in the United States to welcome her and her family to their new home. 
We met James and his wife Claire at Casa Colina. James was driving a go-cart when tragedy struck and it rolled over.  In the accident he broke his neck suffering a C5 spinal cord injury. He is getting better every day and is determined to reclaim his life and support Claire and their four children.

Your support brought a Care Backpack full of resources to Javier at St. John's Regional Medical Center in Ventura.  Javier suffered a spinal cord injury in April. We are going to help him triumph over his injury in this new journey of his life. 
We met Tony and his wife Katheryn at Casa Colina. He was involved in a snowboarding accident in Big Bear and suffered a T12 spinal cord injury. He recently was discharged home and we are looking forward to helping him along his recovery.

Ambassador Training
We held our 1st Ambassador Training Conference with 50 people attending for professional peer mentor training.

Triumph Ambassadors make bedside hospital visits to hundreds of newly-injured people to educate them on their life ahead, making recommendations that will help them on their road to recovery. 

Our goal for 2017 is to deliver a Care Package to every single person in Southern California that has a new paralyzing injury and provide a lifelong support network that serves all people with disabilities. 

You can join us by donating at 

Your help will empower our Ambassadors by reimbursing gas expenses, covering the costs to host our support groups, and to produce educational materials in our support packages.  
Equipment & Supply Exchange

Many people have inadequate health insurance that doesn't provide the proper equipment needed after suffering a traumatic injury.  Your gifts help Triumph repurpose used durable medical goods and give the items to people in need. Here are some highlights from this month:  

We met 5 year old Damian at the Abilities Expo. Our Ambassador Cory had just picked up a child's size wheelchair that someone was getting rid of and brought it with him to our booth. Damian was a perfect fit.
Bumni was injured 2 1/2 years ago due to a sky diving accident. He has been rolling around in an old hospital chair with an inadequate cushion for all that time. So we hooked him up with a new ride and a roho cushion.  

We met Raul at Rancho Los Amigos. He was in a car accident 3 months ago. He was discharged with a large hospital chair. We helped him get a lightweight chair that will be easier for him to get around in. 
David was shot in the back while working at his liquor store last December. His insurance would not cover a proper wheelchair. We were able to find him a wheelchair that fit perfectly to give him independence.

Superhero 5k
Superheroes Triumph! No matter what your ability is, you are a hero to us. This 5K on September 9th will "pack a punch" in fun and ease with a fast, gentle rolling course. 100% of the proceeds benefit Triumph Foundation and our mission - helping people get better every day.



Let'em Roll Casino Night
You are invited to Triumph Foundation's Let'em Roll Casino Nightfundraiser on Saturday August 26, 2017 at a NEW LOCATION, the Universal Hilton, 555 Universal Hollywood Dr, Universal City, CA 91608
This fun event will feature 
blackjack, craps, roulette, and Texas Hold'em Poker. Plus prime rib dinner, music, dancing and silent auction. 

This is our main source of funding to support our programs.  Our vision is to double our efforts with expanded services for children, adults, and Veterans, providing encouragement, activities, equipment, and much needed support. And if we're going to double-downwe need your help to do it!


Thank you
In the coming days we  will be sending you a full report on the success of our Wheelchair Sports Festival.  Stay tuned to be BLOWN AWAY by what our heroes accomplish next!
Please tell your friends and colleagues about Triumph Foundation and keep us and those we are working for in your prayers.  

Your giving enables Triumph Foundation to provide much-needed assistance to thousands of people in the paralysis community.  We rely on donations from generous people like you. Please help us continue to provide these valuable services.

We are so thankful for your support,

Andrew Skinner

3rd Annual Adaptive Sports Expo at VA Long Beach!

May 10, 2017

Wheelchair Sports Festival April 29th & 30th, 2017

April 13, 2017

Let'em Roll Casino Night 2017 *NEW LOCATION*

April 13, 2017

Superheroes Triumph! 5K

April 13, 2017

[Don't miss this] Look what you did...

April 4, 2017
New Beginning for Father of Six
Richard Ruehle is the winner of our Adapted Van Giveaway Essay Contest.
Watch his story:
Look what you did...

Last August Richard was on his way home from work when a car pulled in front of him and he was involved in a motorcycle accident suffering multiple injuries to his spinal cord leaving him a quadriplegic. Since his injury he has had to make many adjustments, but has been determined to reclaim his independence so he can take care of his wife and six children.

Triumph gave him a Care Basket in the hospital, a grant for ramps into his home, a wheelchair, and now an adapted van.
This van will enable him to return to physical therapy, take some of the strain off his wife as a caregiver, allow him to attend and be involved with his kids sports and family activities, and ultimately return to a job that's waiting for him to provide for his family. 

Your generosity and support gave us the ability to help Richard and his family. 

To help make more stories like this possible, go to
Let 'Em Roll Casino Night
Roll the dice, spin the wheel, and help others beat the odds! Don't miss this exciting Triumph Foundation tradition (held for the first time at the Universal Hilton) that provides support for our programs all year long. We can't do this without you.

Purchase your tickets today at a special early bird price for $150 until July 1st. 
All proceeds will benefit Triumph Foundation. Buy Tickets / Sponsor

FREE Sled Hockey Clinic

March 23, 2017

Wheelchair Over The Line Tournament in San Diego

March 23, 2017

Join Casa Colina's Outdoor Adventures Program on their Next ADVENTURE!

March 23, 2017

Diversity Day

January 23, 2017

Christmas Outreach Schedule 2016

December 3, 2016

Princess Cruises Raffle

November 10, 2016


Triumph Foundation and Princess Cruises hosts a raffle to raise money to purchase a new transport van.

Triumph Foundation is selling raffle tickets for $100 to win a Princess Cruises vacation in order to raise money to buy a cargo van for transporting the organization’s Care Baskets to hospitals, wheelchairs, adapted sports equipment, and any other necessary items supporting Triumph’s outreach program needs.

Purchase Raffle Tickets

The winner of the cruise will receive a four-day Coastal Getaway cruise for two in a private balcony stateroom. The cruise sails round-trip from Los Angeles along the West Coast, and will include fresh-made cuisine, comfortable accommodations, and dazzling entertainment.

The drawing will take place on December 27, 2016 at 7 PM at Triumph Foundation's End-Of-The-Year celebration at C.O.R.E. (Center of Restorative Exercise) at 9667 Reseda Blvd., Northridge, CA 91324. Winner need not be present.

Raffle tickets can be purchased at

Adapted Van Giveaway Contest

October 12, 2016
Triumph Foundation is launching an essay contest to select a person with Spinal Cord Injury/Disorder (SCI/D) to receive a donated wheelchair accessible van. There are many individuals that are paralyzed that cannot afford a modified vehicle to go to work or school, regain family unity, and simply reintegrate back into the community. Triumph Foundation’s Adapted Van Giveaway Contest seeks to find an individual who can most benefit from receiving the adapted van to help them reclaim their freedom and independence.

Vehicle Details:
• 1999 Ford E-150 XLT Van
• V8 engine
• Braun Rear Lift
• Ricon 6-way Transfer Driver Seat
• MPS hand controls
• Vehicle is donated in “As-Is” condition, with no warranties given

Contestant Qualifications:
• Person with Spinal Cord Injury/Disorder
• Valid California DMV driver’s license with hand control certification OR efforts being made to attain one.
• Require the van’s special features
• Available to personally receive vehicle upon being awarded
• Provide proof of insurance at time of receipt
• Proof of income/financial constraint
• Must be 18 years or older
• Agree to participate in Triumph Foundation press and promotions regarding the Adaptive Van Giveaway

Essay Instructions:

Provide an autobiographical essay that describes how you were injured, the degree of your disability and how it affects your everyday life, how you currently stay active, what hardships you face preventing you from owning a van now, how you would use this accessible van to move forward with your life goals and endeavors, and any other factors that you wish to be taken into consideration. In addition, include how you would assist Triumph Foundation to help others that are paralyzed.

Entry deadline is December 1, 2016.
Applications will be reviewed by Triumph’s Board of Directors
Giveaway contest winner will be announced January 2017.

Winning Contestant will be chosen by Triumph Foundation’s Board of Directors will review each application and choose the winning contestant.

Application Guidelines:
• Essay must be 1,000 words or less
• Written using Times New Roman font
• Double spaced sentences
• Emailed to
• Email Title “Accessible Van Giveaway Application”
• Essay must be attached to email as a Word doc
• Include a picture of yourself as a 2nd email attachment

*Handwritten applications will not be considered

Medical Supplies Drive

September 27, 2016

Santa Clarita Skate Jam

September 27, 2016

Over-the-Line Wheelchair Baseball Tournament

September 21, 2016

Saturday, October 22, 2016, Triumph Foundation is holding our 3rd Annual Over-the-Line Wheelchair Baseball Tournament at the Barry A. Sanders Sport Field located at Lake Balboa Park 6300 Balboa Blvd. Van Nuys, CA 91316. Everyone's welcome to attend!

To Register, email

Over-the-Line is a modified baseball game where players form small teams, attempt to hit a ball "over the line" into fair territory without their opponents catching it, and keep score. There will be a bracket where teams will have to win their way to the championship.


September 5, 2016

Artists For Trauma Multi Media Group Art Show

July 22, 2016

What it is All About eNewsletter

July 22, 2016
Outreach Update

I was recently asked what makes Triumph Foundation different than other charities?

I thought for a moment, and replied that Triumph Foundation makes quality of life a reality for people dealing with paralysis.  We are a high impact, grass roots, non-profit organization.  We have kept our hearts in the right place, and just try to serve people. 

Triumph provides emotional, practical, and physical support programs.  

Read the outreach update below to see what your support enabled just in the last month.  I know we sent you an outreach update in June, but we are going BACK-TO-BACK eNewsletters.  This is what it is all about.

Triumph exists because of your generosity.  We don't have a rich uncle, daddy warbucks, big celebrity connections, or an institution that predominately funds us...yet.  We rely on people like you and our Let'em Roll fundraiser.

We can do all the good works in the world, but we need capital to fuel the engine.  Our Casino Night is what propels us forward. 

Your donation will help continue Triumph's critical support services.

Buy Tickets Now

Thank you for your support,

Andrew Skinner
(661) 803-3700

Keep Moving Forward Grants
One of our organization's biggest program expenses is our Keep Moving Forward Grants. Your donations to Triumph helps offset financial burdens for people living with SCI. Each month we give away thousands-of-dollars worth in assistance to people with spinal cord injury. Here are some of the highlights of people you've helped:

Rosa was involved in a car accident in 2010 leaving her a T9 paraplegic. She feels like she lost a part of herself when she lost the ability to go places on her own. She works two part time jobs and attends college. She has to rely on family, friends, and Access paratransit to get where she needs to go. Your support helped Rosa get one step closer to regaining her independence by providing her with drivers training at Rancho Los Amigos Rehabilitation Center.

Aaron was injured in a snow boarding accident in 2013 leaving him with a complete spinal cord injury. He is unable to move his arms or legs but fortunately he is able to breath on his own. We hooked him up with a voice IR environmental control unit. Now he is capable of controlling his T.V., lights, and thermostat. 

Jessica is our Ballard Rehab Life Series Group leader. She was injured in 2003 from a roll over car accident suffering a C6-7 spinal cord injury. She credits her accident to helping her find purpose in life and making an impact on this world in a positive way. She gained a new lease on life. Her and her husband recently moved into a new house and they needed help modifying the bathroom. They widened the doorway, created a roll in shower, and installed a new sink and toilet. Their new bathroom will be fully accessible so Jessica can take care of herself independently. 

Care Basket Outreach
Our Care Baskets & Backpacks are the first line of support providing the injured person and their family with resources to guide their way. They are a tool-kit to help someone rebuild their life after becoming paralyzed. Triumph Ambassadors visit hospitals providing mentorship and bringing a message of hope to people that are newly injured. 

We met Jason recently after he suffered a C6-7 spinal cord injury while he was practicing his acrobatic skills. Jason is a professional gymnast and performance artist from Las Vegas.  While he was training on the cables and was suspended upside down they suddenly snapped causing him to fall and Jason broke his neck.  His friends helped him come out to Los Angeles to go to UCLA and plans to transfer to Casa Colina.  He is making an awesome recovery and we are excited to watch him triumph.
Triumph recently met Jacob who broke his neck in a diving accident. He lives in Guam and was going with family and friends to their favorite swimming spot. Without thinking he dove in like he had always done, but the water level was much shallower than normal and he went headfirst into the ground breaking his C5 vertebrae in his neck becoming a quadriplegic. At 17 years old he has a lot of life in front of him and we know that it is going to have a greater purpose than he ever imagined.
When populations are high at hospitals we hold an inpatient party so we can connect with everyone all together that way no-one slips through the cracks. Triumph Foundation visited Rancho Los Amigos Hospital to meet 8 people that recently suffered Spinal Cord Injury.  With our team of Ambassadors, we delivered our Care Backpacks full of resources.
Thank you to our Ambassadors for coming out to meet the newly injured people. We were all fortunate to have people who got injured before us be our mentors. We made a lot of friends that day that will last a lifetime and are the future of Triumph Foundation. It is all about paying it forward.

Home Modifications
Our goal is to minimize the obstacles that people face after suffering a spinal cord injury. One challenge that many people face after being injured is wheelchair accessibility at home. Most people never plan to spend a large part of their life using a wheelchair, so they are not prepared to deal with the challenges of accessibility that that requires. Triumph helps people with planning, consulting, referrals, and at times, performing accessible remodels. We know that having access is having freedom and independence.

Triumph Foundation met Caesar at Henry Mayo after he got into a car accident. He suffered a spinal cord injury becoming a quadriplegic.  We followed him along his journey to Rancho Los Amigos Hospital providing him mentorship and a Care Basket full of resources.  When it was time for him to come home, his family asked for help building ramps to give him access.  Triumph partnered with the men's group from Heart of the Canyons church.  The workers came out and built ramps to allow Caesar to come home.   

Roll On Capitol Hill
Triumph Foundation is proud to be the Golden State Chapter of the United Spinal Association.  Our founder, Andrew recently visited Washington DC and attended the 5th Annual Roll on Capitol Hill Legislative and Advocacy Conference to advocate for legislation that impacts people with disabilities. 
Roll on Capitol Hill is United Spinal's annual legislative advocacy event that addresses issues that impact the health, independence, and quality of life of individuals living with spinal cord injuries and disorders. He along with a group of others from California met with the states Congress members to discuss several pieces of legislation that matter to people with disabilities.

Learn More 

Women's Retreat
Triumph Foundation held it's 3rd annual Women's Retreat for wives, girlfriends, and partners of men with SCI. This year they went to Ventura and stayed at a beach resort. They spent the day socializing and discussing issues of having a significant other and companion who is paralyzed. Spinal cord injury doesn't just affect the person who is injured, it also affects their loved ones and people around them.

Cooking with our Veterans
Triumph Foundation held a wheelchair friendly cooking clinic and made lunch for around 20 veterans at the Long Beach VA hospital. Andrew, showed that even a quadriplegic is able to cook a good tasting, healthy, and nutritious meal. He and Triumph Ambassadors Walter, Erik, Luis, Jimmy, and Damon cooked up some food to feed the paralyzed vets and tried to inspire and challenge everyone in attendance to make better food choices and cook their own meals. We hope this is just the start to their post spinal cord injury culinary skills.

Casino Night Fundraiser

Join us at our Let'em Roll Casino Night on Saturday, July 30, 2016 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Valencia, CA.  

Don't miss the BEST PARTY of the year that will include a Texas Hold'em Poker Tournament, Craps, Blackjack and Roulette; PLUS we will have Prime Rib Dinner, Music, Dancing, and a Silent Auction.

Not only is this event a lot of fun and great for a date night, it is a celebration of all that we've accomplished and is our main fundraiser of the year that supports our programs. It is not about the games, it is about the cause.
Watch the sizzle reel:

Thank you

There are so many more stories worth sharing...your support changes lives.

Even if you can't personally attend our fundraiser, please consider buying a ticket for someone who otherwise could not afford one.   

Make a Donation 
We are so thankful for your support,

Andrew Skinner

Best News All Day

July 2, 2016

Outreach Update

Last month Triumph held our Wheelchair Sports Festival and we had many people say it was the highlight of their year.  Watch the video

But I know many of you would argue that it is not the best event we put on.  The best is our Let'em Roll Casino Night!

Get ready for the party of the year on Saturday, July 30th!!

The event will feature Texas Hold 'em Poker Tournament, Craps, Blackjack, and Roulette.  Plus Prime Rib Dinner, Dancing, and Silent Auction.  

All for only $100 if you buy your tickets before July 1st. It will be the best hundred bucks you spend all year.  Buy Tickets
Not only is the Casino Night fun and great for a date night, it is a celebration of all that we've accomplished and is our main fundraiser that supports our programs.  It is not about the games, it is about the cause. 
Read the Outreach Update below to see what you have made possible. It may be the best news you read all day. 

Even if you can't personally attend our fundraiser, please consider buying a ticket for someone who otherwise could not afford one.  

Thank you for your support,

Andrew Skinner
(661) 803-3700

Wheelchair Sports Festival

Our Wheelchair Sports Festival weekend had over 800 participants plus spectators and everyone had a chance to push the limits of their ability!  It was our BIGGEST EVENT EVER and we had many new people come out to play. 

Watch the video:

All of the events were a success; Diveheart held an amazing scuba diving program in the pool, participants in the WCMX rocked the skate park, people were challenged to race in our Powerchair Rodeo, many found their creative talents at our Artists for Trauma painting workshop, the Resource Fair increased awareness of community assets, and we opened many eyes and hearts to the number of people that live in our community with disabilities.  

The Wheelchair Sports Festival was an all inclusive, all fun, all safe, adapted athletics free-for-all. It doesn't get much better than that.
Check out Michael Hansel's pictures from Day 1 and Day 2

Paralympic Sport Club

Triumph Foundation is proud to announce that we have become the Paralympic Sport Club of Los Angeles.  This will allow us to develop our programs to help para-athletes participate in more sports and hopefully grow and nurture some future gold medalists!  

Click here for more information on Paralympic Sport Clubs

Care Basket Outreach

Our Care Baskets & Backpacks are the first line of support providing the injured person and their family with resources to guide their way. They are a tool-kit to help someone rebuild their life after becoming paralyzed. 
Brenda and her fiancé Darrack recently moved to California from the East coast to start their lives together. While 4 months pregnant, Brenda fell off the bed and broke her neck suffering a C4-6 spinal cord injury.  Thank God the baby is perfectly fine. She is getting good movement back on one side already and is getting better every day.  We pray for her recovery and health for the baby.
We met Terry, a software engineer from Venice Beach who recently had a procedure done during a operation on his neck that went wrong. He had damage to his spinal cord at the C5-6 level. He is getting a lot of return of function back and is able to walk a little already. He has a good attitude and a great support system with his girlfriend Anna, and we are optimistic about his transition home.
We met Michael who has a rare autoimmune disease who needed some rehab to regain strength.
Our ambassadors connect with patients at Rancho Los Amigos hospital to deliver Care Baskets.
We recently met Jose at Care Meridian's Oso House in Chatsworth who recently got into a car accident suffering an L2 spinal cord injury.  He is making a great recovery and is able to move his legs.  We plan to help him get the proper equipment to return home and regain mobility.
We met L.T. at Ballard Rehab. L.T. suffered a spinal cord injury from a gunshot wound while he was protecting a friend's house from a home invasion six months ago. We gave him a Care Backpack full of resources and information to help him rebuild his life.
We met Hank and his girlfriend Marissa at UC Irvine Medical Center. Hank was riding his motorcycle when someone pulled out in front of him crashing into his bike. He suffered multiple fractures including injury to his T4 vertebrae resulting in a spinal cord injury. He has an awesome attitude and a great support system. He is determined to ride again. We are excited to help him and Marissa transition back to life.
We met Leonard at Tustin Rehab. He recently suffered a spinal stroke suddenly becoming paralyzed. He has an awesome outlook on life and was grateful for a visit. He had lots of questions on normal activities of daily living and is anxious to get back to the good life of hanging out at home with his wife by the beach, drinking gin martinis and enjoying each day. We look forward to joining him for happy hour.

Equipment & Supply Exchange

Triumph Foundation helps repurpose old, used, and extra durable medical goods by giving them to people who are in need.  We call this our Equipment & Supply Exchange program. If you are in need or have items you'd like to donate, check out our website's Exchange to see what items are listed. 
Our friend Alfonzo is a frequent user of
our Exchange. He often uses it to find catheters and other urological supplies when his insurance won't cover enough to get him through the month.  Recently, while he was searching he saw a post by someone who was giving away two standing frames. Both were in need of work but Alfonzo was up for the challenge. 

He picked them up and spent time repairing them back into working condition. Keeping one standing frame for himself, he kept his eyes and ears open for someone else who was in need. 
A short time later he reconnected with 
his friend Rob who had been wanting for one for years but never was able to afford to purchase one. 

Alfonzo can say the rest:
"When I heard about (Rob's) situation I had to pay it forward and I gave him one of the standing frames that I got from the Exchange program. I took it to him, he was so happy, he hadn't really stood up since his accident four years ago. That made my day, that I can pay forward something that Triumph Foundation did by opening the Exchange program on there website.  From myself and Rob, thank you Triumph Foundation."

We met David at our Scripps Encinitas SCI Life Series Group. He has been injured just over 1 year and has gained a healthy amount of  weight back and had outgrown his wheelchair. He was very uncomfortable and looked awkward in a small wheelchair.  

Triumph came to the rescue.  We found him a loaner wheelchair that fits him much better and delivered it to him in San Diego.  He can keep it as long as he needs it. 

Nick Van Hecke was Athlete of the Year at our Wheelchair Sports Festival and helped us coach racquetball at the event.  He told us he has been looking for a better high performance wheelchair. His chair had seen some miles on it and Nick was looking for an upgrade.  It just so happened that our Ambassador Erik St. Amant had donated one of his old wheelchairs that was very aggressive and built for someone with good chair skills. Nick was a perfect match. 

Jaelynn is seven years old, a paraplegic, and lives in Montana. We received an email from her dad saying she was in need of a second wheelchair to use offroad to get around outside around their home in the country. Her dad was wondering if there was anyway we could help their family.  We had a small Zephyr wheelchair in our inventory that has been waiting for a good home. We shipped it out to Jaelynn and with some slight modifications by her dad, it fit perfectly and has some room for her to grow and use it for a number of years.   


Casino Night Fundraiser

You are invited to Triumph's Let'em Roll Casino Night Fundraiser on Saturday July 30, 2016 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Valencia.  The event will feature Texas Hold'em Poker Tournament, Craps, Blackjack and Roulette. It will also include Prime Rib Dinner, Dancing, and Silent Auction. 

This is our main source of funds to support our programs.  Please help us carry on our outreach. 

We need sponsors and silent auction items.  

Thank you

Your support of these programs changes lives.  

If you liked what you read, please join us in celebration of life after spinal cord injury at our Let'em Roll Casino Night fundraiser.  Download the flyer
Please consider giving monthly to Triumph Foundation.  A small gift each month helps keep our focus on serving.  It is an easy and affordable way for you to invest in people with disabilities.  

We are so thankful for your support,

Andrew Skinner