Press Releases

Familia Unida’s “Living with Multiple Sclerosis” 6th Annual Wheelchair Wash

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East Los Angeles, October 3, 2009 | HELEN MACHADO (202 225-1766) | comments

At Familia Unida’s “Living with Multiple Sclerosis” 6th Annual Wheelchair Wash, Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-34) presented the organization with a congressional record tribute for its outstanding service to the community.

“I want to give special recognition to the woman who is the heart and soul of Familia Unida, the founder and Executive Director Irma Resendez. In 1991, after seeing the lack of services for Latinos with disabilities, Irma had the courage to found Familia Unida, the first organization in the country designed to serve Spanish-language speakers with Multiple Sclerosis. Due to Irma’s hard work and commitment, Familia Unida has grown to serve individuals with all forms of disability,” said Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard, who served as the event’s honorary co-chair.  

Planned to coincide with Disability Awareness Month, the wheelchair wash took place at 4716 East Cesar E. Chavez Ave in East Los Angeles where area residents were treated to a free event that included food, entertainment, and pampering – from washing and waxing their wheelchairs or scooters to haircuts, makeovers, manicures, and massages.

"The Wheelchair Wash embraces diversity and a reminder that people living with a dis-Ability merit equal opportunities for employment and social engagement…
encouraging all to be more inclusive” says Irma Resendez, Founder and Executive Director of Familia Unida Living with MS.

A non-profit organization founded in 1991 to serve the needs of the Latino Multiple Sclerosis community, Familia Unida assists more than 15,000 clients each year living with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and various disabilities.  Familia Unida was the first organization in U.S. history designed to serve Spanish-speakers living with Multiple Sclerosis. Since its founding, Familia Unida has expanded its focus to serve people with all forms of physical disability throughout Los Angeles County. The services it provides include: Ticket to Work, a program that assists clients obtain employment; technology training; cultural diversity workshops; counseling; advocacy; and referrals.

Pictured in the photo from left to right: Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (holding roses) presents a Congressional Record Tribute to President and Founder of Familia Unida, Irma Resendez (shown holding the tribute) and other members of the Familia Unida leadership team.

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Tags: Health