Thrive by IU Health

June 01, 2023

Funding the gift of mobility

IU Health Bloomington Hospital

Funding the gift of mobility

Curry Auto Center, Inc. has been a Bloomington staple almost as long as the motorized vehicle itself. “We do very little advertising,” said Cary Curry, president and fourth generation of the family-owned dealership. “We do more community involvement.” Liz Peterson, an occupational therapist and certified driving rehab specialist at IU Health Bloomington, agrees—she knows from firsthand experience that the name Curry is synonymous with giving.

For more than a decade, Curry Auto Center has supplied vehicles used for mobility rehabilitation to help patients drive again despite neurological disorders and other medical conditions.

Sedan with Adaptive Equipment installed

Curry provided the first vehicle for this program in 2011: a sedan outfitted with adaptive equipment necessary for Peterson’s patients to drive safely, such as left-foot gas pedals and knobs and hand controls in place of traditional gas and brake pedals. The Curry Auto Center recently contributed a second vehicle—an updated crossover SUV—as well as a monetary donation that Peterson said will secure the future of the program.

“So many of us take for granted the ability to get in a car and drive wherever we want,” Peterson said. “My patients were so grateful for the rehab sedan because it helped them regain a sense of normalcy.” Peterson said nearly 1,000 patients have been assessed to drive using the car leased by Curry.

Following their completion of equipment training, each patient is given a “vehicle prescription” that notes the specialty equipment they need to make driving feasible—ensuring they can live independently. “Thanks to Curry, I feel the weight lifted off my shoulders knowing that we will be able to continue making a difference in our community,” she said.

For information on how to support philanthropic initiatives at IU Health, contact the IU Health Foundation at 317.962.1777 or foundationinfo@iuhealth.org.