The Las Floristas Children’s Charities, a nonprofit, all-volunteer organization, was started more than 75 years ago by a group of civic-minded women who wished to help children and adolescents with physical disabilities lead more productive lives.
Las Floristas has exclusively supported Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center Pediatrics activities for four decades. With gifts totaling more than $10 million to date, Las Floristas has funded many Rancho programs, always concentrating on the special needs of children.
The devotion to our special children has helped provide care and assistance to thousands with birth defects, brain damage, severe injuries resulting from accidents, and other acquired disabilities. Our goal is to help children return to school with the confidence to take on new challenges and the tools to discover and use every bit of the ability within them. Every day, Las Floristas proves that one person can make a difference in the life of a child.
Some of the many programs Las Floristas has funded include:
- The Kenneth and Harlyne Norris Center for Applied Rehabilitation Technology (CART)
- The Marilyn J. Hilton Resource Center & Gregory R. Dillon Garden Plaza
- Rancho’s Las Floristas Pediatric Wheelchair Sports Program
- Las Floristas Medical Transport Van
- Nancy Dillon Pathokinesiology Computer Center
- Las Floristas Neurospsychology Laboratory
- Las Floristas College Scholarship/Awards Program
- Children’s Carnival Day
- Birthday Celebrations for Children with Disabilities
Here are a few highlights from three Las Floristas-sponsored projects at Rancho:
- The Computer Therapy Lab at CART offers computers for special needs children with special keyboards, and other accessibility options so that children can again use the computer to learn and play. Las Floristas provided special pediatric software and peripheral equipment designed especially for special needs children.
- The Wheelchair Sports Program provides 40 of Rancho’s inpatients and outpatients with the opportunity to participate in success-oriented physical activities. The program was started more than 25 years ago and has been funded by Las Floristas since its inception. The Rancho Wheelchair Sports Program is the only comprehensive wheelchair sports program in California that caters to youth and is completely free of charge for participants. Many of our wheelchair sports program athletes not only graduate from high school, but attend college and participate in sports. Our athletes are becoming educated, goal-oriented and productive members of society.
- The Las Floristas Scholarship/Awards Program has already helped more than 70 young people with their goals of obtaining a college degree. Several of those students have begun working on their Masters degrees. The Scholarship program is the crowning jewel of the rehabilitation process for Rancho’s children. It is hopes and dreams that build the future, and education is its path. At Rancho, with the assistance of Las Floristas, every child and family is made aware that opportunities exist for each child to succeed at all educational levels and that with hard work and loving support, these special children can realize the power of their dreams. Neither disability nor financial issues are allowed to deter the success of our children.
Providing Comprehensive Care
The Department of Pediatrics at Rancho Los Amigos continues to provide comprehensive evaluation and ongoing medical supervision for children with physical disabilities from infancy to 21 years of age. Some of the disorders treated at Rancho include spinal cord injury, traumatic head injury, children on ventilators or with tracheostomy tubes, meningitis and encephalitis, Guillain-Barre Syndrome, muscular dystrophy and spinal muscular atrophy.
The Las Floristas Commitment
Each member of Las Floristas devotes her personal volunteer time and energy both to fund-raising and to personal contact with the children we sponsor. We are active participants at our clinics, and especially enjoy the “hands-on” work we do at the festive holiday parties and special projects created for our patients.
Luis Montes, M.D., Chief of Rancho’s Department of Pediatrics, stated, “The support of Las Floristas continues to uplift us. Your dedication to the children of Rancho continues to give us hope, and continues to allow us to dream.”
Donating to Las Floristas
If you wish to make a donation to Las Floristas to help the children of Rancho, please make your check payable to Las Floristas, Inc. and mail it to:
Las Floristas, Inc.
c/o Rancho Los Amigos Foundation
Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center
7601 E. Imperial Highway, SSA-1110
Downey, CA 90242
Rancho Los Amigos Foundation
The Rancho Los Amigos Foundation is a tax exempt 501(c)(3) charitable nonprofit organization that raises funds to support research, education, equipment, and patient care at world-renowned Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center for patients who have suffered catastrophic disabling illnesses and injuries. Our funding helps patients who have suffered major strokes, spinal cord injuries, post-polio syndrome, brain injuries, birth defects or other disabling conditions build bridges to independence so that they may return to their family, school, or a job. Many patients make miraculous recoveries, defying the odds because of the excellent care they receive that heals their bodies and rebuilds their self-esteem.
Rancho is the only rehabilitation facility in California or any of its neighboring states to be ranked in the Annual U.S. News & World Report listing of “America’s Best Hospitals” for Rehabilitation Medicine. This is especially notable because Rancho’s patients have the highest level of disability and the lowest socioeconomic status of those at any rehab facility in the nation. That’s why it’s so important for the Foundation to fund vital patient programs that are essential elements in helping patients strive to realize the power of their dreams at Rancho, where miracles happen every day. Every patient has a unique story of recovery and beating the odds. Please click here to read some of our patients’ stories.
Rancho Los Amigos Foundation provides private funding for more than 30 innovative Rancho patient programs, many of which are directed by former patients. Some of these programs include:
- Don Knabe Pediatric Arts Program
- Performing Arts of Rancho
- Day Rehabilitation & Wellness Center
- KnowBarriers Peer Mentoring Program
- Wheelchair Sports Program
- Therapeutic Horseback Riding Program
- Winter Thereapeutic Sports Program
- Center for Applied Rehabilitation Technology
- Advanced Technology Robotics
- Language & Culture Resource Center
The Foundation conducts and/or funds a number of events and programs throughout the year, including:
- Rancho Golf Classic
- Art of Rancho Exhibition
- Spinal Injury Games
- Patient Fashion Show
- Annual Rancho Stroke Walk
- Amistad Gala
- Stroke Prevention Seminars
Giving to Rancho
A gift may be made to Rancho Los Amigos Foundation in appreciation of care given, in tribute of a loved one or to honor a special doctor or clinician. The Rancho Los Amigos Foundation is a separate, tax-exempt 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Your charitable contributions to Rancho Los Amigos Foundation are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowable by law.
- Art of Rancho Art Book
- Rancho Brochure
To Learn More, Contact:
Deborah Arroyo, Executive Director
Rancho Los Amigos Foundation
7601 E. Imperial Highway
Support Services Annex, Suite 1110
Downey, CA 90242
Tel. (562) 401-8214
For more information, please visit:
Rancho Research Institute
Rancho Research Institute, Inc. supports research and education for the benefit of all persons with disability. We strive to provide a constant feed of new discovery and state of the art information about best health care for professionals and patients.
We are based on the campus of Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Hospital Center, which is a Los Angeles County hospital serving all people regardless of their ability to pay.
The Rancho Research Institute (formerly The Los Amigos Research and Education Institute, Inc.) was established in 1956 as a non-profit organization to administer medical research and educational programs at Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center (Rancho). In addition, RRI serves as a resource and information center and sponsors seminars and conferences, presented by Rancho professional staff, which attract physicians and health personnel from all over the world for specialized rehabilitation studies.
RRI allows Rancho to recruit and retain clinicians with intellectual curiosity, committed to discovery and implementation of best clinical practice. RRI also allows Rancho patients access to cutting edge treatments and technologies. Rancho has over 60 years of experience providing quality comprehensive care for people with disabilities. Rancho’s mission is to provide each patient with superior medical and rehabilitation services in a culturally-sensitive environment.
Rancho Research Institute is affiliated with and conducts research with multiple world-renowned institutions including University of Southern California, University of California Los Angeles, University of Irvine, Loma Linda University, Western University and CalTech.
Julia LaPlount, Executive Director
Rancho Research Institute, Inc.
7601 E. Imperial Hwy., 900-A
Downey, CA 90242
Phone: 562-401-8111 Fax: 562-803-5569
For more information, please visit:
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