Success Stories

Noah's Success Story!

Plus One Foundation helps so many people and we love doing it. The thing that makes us truly happy is when we hear stories such as this one and it's such a wonderful story that we just had to share it!  My name is Trishana and I am the proud mom of a special needs child named Noah.

Noah is 15 years old, and has struggled a bit more than the typical child with Autism, club feet, Spina biffida acolta, scoliosis, Somatic dramatic language disorder, and dyslexia.

With that said he is such a compassionate, kind, loving child. When Noah sees a disabled person struggling he always says "Mom I just pray that other people don't make fun of them the way they made fun of me." Noah has always wanted friends so badly. It has certainly been a struggle for him and such a strong desire.

I'll never forget the day a few years back when three neighborhood boys who have always ignored my son and teased him throughout his childhood, knocked on our door asking Noah if he would like to ride scooters with them. Before I could stop Noah, he was out the door with his new birthday scooter and a giant smile on his face. Noah ran inside 5 minutes later Saying “Mama, mama they really want to be my friend now. They just asked me to check the time for them.”

When he returned with the time..... they were gone and so was his new scooter. Needless to say Noah was heartbroken and devastated.

Shortly after we found a program called Little Bit Horse Therapy and signed Noah up for riding lessons. He sure loved grooming the horses and looking in their eyes and learning their body language.

Noah finally found friends who loved him unconditionally. They were in the form of animals, but friends no less.

Due to financial struggles we could no longer afford little bits lessons. Noah was heartbroken as he had to say goodbye to the horses that truly became Noah's friends. I still remember Noah kissing goodbye to his favorite horse Sunny on the side of the face and a tear started rolling down Noah's cheek.

I called Little Bit to explain our situation and due to a lack of funding they couldn't help Noah at that time. The gal at Little Bit told me about an exciting new foundation called the Plus One Foundation and gave me a contact number and said you never know, maybe they can help Noah out.

Within 3 hours of me leaving them a voicemail message explaining our situation, I received a phone call back from Kacey Kroeger, from the Plus One Foundation. I'll never forget that compassionate, female voice on the phone. So excited to talk to me. Within the two minutes of our conversation, all Kacey could say over and over was: “We really want to help you. We want to find a way to help Noah.”

She began to say “This is exactly why we are starting this foundation. This is why we've spend all of these long hours fighting to get this foundation off the ground. For all the other Noah's in the world.” Kacey said “We can't give up on Noah. He deserves to experience all the same things other typically developing children do. Friendships, good self esteem and success.”

Because of Plus One Foundation’s generous donation Noah is still riding horses at Little Bit as of today. Noah's self esteem has improved tremendously. He has fallen in love with several horses and even made real human friends there.

Thanks to the Plus One Foundation we've discovered that Noah is really a very good rider. Noah even went on to compete in two horse shows. Noah's face lit up with such pride and amazement as he heard his name being called as the first place winner. Not once, but twice.

As you can imagine these ribbons are so proudly displayed in our home and most importantly in Noah's heart and his self-esteem.

This story that I share with you is bigger than just a special needs child, riding a horse. It's about a child who will now carry with him his entire life the feeling of success, true friendship, and the most importantly the knowledge that a group a strangers at the time, now known to our family as the Plus One Foundation, believed in Noah and his dream to ride.

Thank you Sincerely, Trishana

To help more children, like Noah, and adults with neurological disorders, diseases, or injuries check out our homepage at http://www.plusonefoundation.org/

Also we have our Retro Bingo Fundraiser coming up in less than a month. This is NOT your grandma’s bingo. Join us for a night of food, bingo, and fun to support a great cause! You can register online!

Or if you can’t make it you can always donate here

To hear more success stories check out our YouTube channel

In the Blink of an Eye

Recently I got the chance to meet with one of Plus One’s grant recipients, Mary. Back in 2007, Mary had just given birth to her twin daughters eight days earlier, when in a blink of an eye her life changed forever.  Mary suffered from a brain aneurysm and was then rushed in to have an emergency brain surgery and fell into a coma for three months.  

 

Of course before meeting Mary I did a little research on brain aneurysms and here is what I found. A brain aneurysm is s a weak bulging spot on the wall of a brain artery, when the aneurysm ruptures it allows blood to escape into the space around the brain. About 30,000 people in the United States suffer a brain aneurysm rupture, or there is a brain aneurysm rupturing every 18 minutes. Ruptured brain aneurysms are fatal in about 40% of cases. Of those who survive, about 66% suffer some permanent neurological deficit.

 

Needless to say Mary’s life has changed drastically since her brain aneurysm. She had to relearn all the basic things that we take for granted like walking, talking, and breathing. Mary does one-on-one Mobility and Balance training with a physical instructor, Sue. These sessions are so Mary can work on her strength, balance, and mobility. I got to meet with Mary during one of her sessions and got to learn how Sue is such an important part in Mary’s rehabilitation.

 

Sue does a lot to help Mary. One thing Sue does is since Mary is no longer able to drive, Sue drives to Mary’s house once a week for their sessions. Mary gets distracted easily and Sue is always thinking of new ways to keep her attention. One way she does this is through music. Mary danced and sang to Bruce Springsteen for almost the entire session and she absolutely loved it.  Another thing that Sue realized keeps Mary focused is numbers, when doing a certain exercise if Sue didn’t tell her to do a certain amount Mary would get distracted and start talking to me. But the moment Sue told Mary “Ok now do five more” Mary would instantly get motivated and would start counting in French!

 

My favorite part of going to Mary’s session with Sue was at the very end when Mary told me her goal to run again. Mary used to run on the UW cross country team and could run a half mile in TWO minutes. Since the brain aneurysm, Mary has had to relearn how to walk and now that she has got that down she wants to get back to doing the thing she loved, running. At the end of the session Mary ‘jogged’ across her living room and she had the largest smile on her face.

 

While talking with the two of them, I could see that Mary and Sue had become friends in their time together. And to end this I would like to quote Sue and Mary. Sue told me “My favorite part of working with Mary is her great sense of humor” to which Mary responded “You can’t get through life without being able to laugh” Even though Mary’s life changed so drastically and so quickly she remembers to laugh. And this reminds me that everything I do for Plus One is to help people like Mary smile again and find some hope and laughter in their lives.

 

If you are interested in learning more about brain aneurysms check out http://www.bafound.org/

 

Chelsea Husted

Plus One Foundation

Intern

Mary "jogging"