PBRC's Outdoor Therapy Center provides outdoor experience for patients

ODESSA, TX (KWES) - The Permian Basin Rehab Center is opening their Outdoor Therapy Center on Friday in an effort to help their patients learn how practice their motor skills. 
The project, which cost over a million dollars, broke ground last year, and through the help of donors the space is finally complete.

"It's an 8 year old dream," said Kathy Norwood, Director of Development and Marketing for the Rehab Center. "In 2010 I presented it to Larry Lee, one of our board members and he said dream bigger and I did and the board, donors and foundations all got behind that dream and now here we are."

This Outdoor Therapy Center is said to be one of a kind in the country. Built to help patients with their motor skills, the center provides the full experience including  a musical garden, a trampoline, a car to help patients practice getting in and out of vehicles and different textured surfaces.

"In a nice building, you can do a whole lot of great therapy," said Norwood. "But you can't replicate what's outside in our patient's every day world like the park, backyard, driveway or store.

"What you can do here, you can transfer to every day life so you don't miss out. That's my biggest thing is people to be left out of an environment."

Every year, the rehab center sees up to 2,100 different patients from 34 surrounding counties. With extra space to provide the outdoor experience, the move in the right direction all begins with a single step.

"I've got to walk out here and see their reactions and it's humbling and exciting to think what door we're going to open for that person," said Norwood. "That they'll look like everybody else and they'll be like everybody else. To give that to people is huge."

The center will have their grand opening this Friday at 9:30 a.m. It's located right next to their building on 620 N Alleghaney. The celebration is open to the public.

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