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Our Programs

Whether you are an individual living with a brain and/or spinal cord injury, a caregiver, or professional in the field, we have programs to offer for everyone. Through these programs, we connect individuals needing support with others through peer mentoring, sports and recreation partnerships, and community events. Other programs we offer focus on raising awareness, education, and advocacy. To learn about our programs, click on the tabs below.

Connection Circle


Our Connections Circle (Connections Immersed in Real Community Life Experiences) program has been started to fill the need of connecting individuals with brain and/or spinal cord injuries to support around the state. While there are some support groups individually run throughout the state, there are many individuals living with brain and/or spinal cord injuries that are not connected with any type of support. By communicating with people around the state, our hope is to locate these individuals needing support, and bring them together for enrichment and social opportunities with established support systems. Connections Circle events will be offered numerous times throughout the year statewide.

To learn more about this program, please email

Resource Backpacks

Resource Backpacks

Thanks to the generosity of the Oscar J. Tolmas Charitable Trust, we are able to provide resource backpack containing pertinent information that is of immediate assistance to individuals following a brain and/or spinal cord injury.  We are deeply grateful to the Oscar J. Tolmas Charitable Trust for supporting our mission and providing these resource backpacks.

Mr. Oscar J. Tolmas was an attorney, World War II veteran and a real estate developer. Upon his death, he created the Oscar J. Tolmas Charitable Trust to help other tax-exempt organizations with their mission of helping others. The Brain Injury Association of Louisiana/LA Chapter of United Spinal Association is the statewide resource for those impacted by brain and/or spinal cord injuries. Trustees Lisa Romano and Vincent Giardina stated “We decided to support the association because of their proven efforts in advocacy, awareness, education, prevention, and services to individuals and families affected by brain and/or spinal cord injuries. That falls in line with Mr. Tolmas’ mission of helping others.”

For more information, please send email to:

Thank You to:

Craig Cares

Craig Cares

Craig Cares emerged through the gift of friendship, in honor of Craig, to ease the transition in life for individuals following a spinal cord injury. Knowing the challenges Craig faced after his injury, Craig Cares aims to provide hope by helping others who are facing similar challenges in basic, yet impactful ways.

Craig Cares is a grant program, funded by a charitable gift, intended to assist individuals with spinal cord injuries as they adjust to life living with their injury. The goal is to provide this assistance, in a time of great need, when insurance will not cover or fully cover necessary items or services to maintain a positive quality of life. Individuals may apply for a grant, up to $1,000, if they meet the criteria as well as agree to the terms listed on application. Applications will be reviewed and a determination will be made by a committee. If the application is approved, a check will be mailed to the address listed on the application. A receipt must be submitted to our organization for the approved purchase. Failure to submit a receipt will eliminate any future grant funding.


Thanks to Our Sponsors:

Unmasking Brain Injury

Unmasking Brain Injury

BIALA is honored and proud to represent Louisiana as the state partner of "Unmasking Brain Injury". This powerful art exhibit, created by individuals from around Louisiana, who have sustained brain injuries, promotes awareness of the prevalence of brain injury; gives individuals with brain injuries a voice, and educates others of what it’s like to live with a brain injury. These masks show others that persons living with a disability, due to their brain injury, are like anyone else, deserving of dignity, respect, compassion, and the opportunity to prove their value as citizens in their community. Louisiana's Unmasking Brain Injury art exhibit is proudly shared around the state, at no cost, and leaves an impactful impression on all who view the masks.

To host the exhibit or paint a mask, email:

Thanks to Our Sponsor:

Sports/Recreation Partnership

Sports/Recreation Partnership

BIALA has formalized a partnership with the New Orleans based BISCIS League (Brain Injury Spinal Cord Injury Sports), and with the Baton Rouge based Cajun Crushers.

BISCIS is led by a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist who volunteers her time generously to individuals with either brain or spinal cord injuries who wish to play baseball and to bowl. Cajun Crushers, is led by a volunteer Support Group leader and volunteer coaches, who help train spinal cord injury survivors throughout the year who train for the annual Endeavor Games in Oklahoma.

To learn more about participating in these sports programs, please email

Peer Mentoring

Peer Mentoring

BIALA collaborates with hospitals and rehabilitation facilities around the state offering to pair certified, trained peer mentors, with patients and/or their caregivers who could benefit from having a mentor. This program impacts many lives in different ways, but its most important influence is the first-hand knowledge and guidance that newly injured individuals or caregivers are able to receive from their peer mentors who have gone through similar injuries. For more information, email:

Additional Resources

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