Shriners Hospitals for Children, the official philanthropy of Shriners International, is a pediatric health care system providing specialty care in a family-centered environment, regardless of the patients’ ability to pay. The Shriners Hospital in Chicago specializes in orthopedics, cleft/craniofacial services, and spinal cord injury rehabilitation.
The Rinker Family Foundation was the principle funder for the remarkable new Swiss-built pediatric Lokomat, now in use at the Chicago hospital. The Lokomat assists patients through automated locomotion therapy. A non-ambulatory child, using the Lokomat, is able to walk following a pre-programmed computerized pattern, which resembles the natural gait. The pediatric Lokomat at Shriners Hospital Chicago is used for clinical and research programs to benefit children with spinal cord injury, cerebral palsy, and other neuromuskuloskeletal conditions.
Long committed to the care and nurture of children, the Rinker Family Foundation is one of four major institutions involved in the acquisition of the pediatric Lokomat in Chicago. Three generations of the Rinker family attended an award ceremony at the Chicago hospital and a demonstration of the Lokomat in which they observed a close family-friend undergoing therapy. The attending family group included John Rinker, founder and creative and entrepreneurial force behind Rinker Boat Company’s great success from its inception. Joining him were daughter Raeni Rinker-Dumford, her husband Chris, and their children Agatha and Addison. Mizpah Noble Robert Dumford also accompanied the group.
It was a day to celebrate and show appreciation says Mr. Niederpruem, “We are grateful to the Rinker Family Foundation for their visionary and generous gifts to make this important device a part of our service. The Rinkers are true friends of children and great colleagues with our staff.”