We sat down with Alternatives in Motion’s new Program Coordinator, Kelsey, and got to know her a little better:
- Tell us a little bit more about yourself!
I am originally from a little town in Northeast MI, called Alpena. I moved down to Grand Rapids for school and ended up falling in love with West Michigan and everything it had to offer. I completed school at Grand Valley State University for my Bachelors in Exercise Science and went on to pursue a Masters in Occupational Therapy, in which I still continue to practice as a Pediatric OT! At Grand Valley I met my wonderful husband and have been married for about a year and a half. We love to be active outdoors and love to travel, which has included going to the Dominican Republic, Africa and soon, Europe!
- Why were you interested in working with AIM?
When I found out about AIM, my heart was on fire! I was craving a different way to get more involved in organizations making significant changes to better the West Michigan community. As an OT, independence is #1, and having experience in the medical field, I knew that individuals run into barriers to reach that independence. When I heard about AIM, I knew this was the perfect way to make an impact. Taking a more non-traditional role in OT has been more rewarding than I ever imagined.
- What has been your favorite moment working with AIM thus far?
Narrowing it down to one is so hard! After returning to the U.S., from Africa, and spending time in an orphanage, I think this particular story was very impactful. I will never forget the family that came in looking for a wheelchair for a child they were adopting from China. China wouldn’t allow them to bring the chair he was using to the U.S. and since they were in the process of adopting, insurance quickly denied them. When we walked back into the warehouse to see what we had available, there was the most ideal pediatric wheelchair that had been recently donated and ready to go to a new home. Many happy tears were shed over this wheelchair, both by myself and this family.
- Why should others support Alternatives in Motion’s mission?
People should support AIM because every piece of mobility equipment improves a client’s life significantly. All that AIM, and the family I mentioned above, could do was thank the generous person who donated that chair. The person who dropped off that piece of equipment not knowing how it was going to impact someone. It gave a little boy a new life.
I wish I could tell all the stories that come with our equipment, and the stories of the people who receive them. When the community supports us, we are giving life and independence to our clients. I wake up knowing I am making a difference in our community and changing lives every day! I encourage everyone to become involved with our community events, volunteering, mobility drives, anything; and I promise your life will be changed forever!