Holiday Giving 2015
Happy New Year!
As we begin the new year, we can’t help but reflect on all the great things that happened last year. 2015 was truly a blessing for STAR Physical Therapy and we hope it was for you and your family as well. From a business perspective, we experienced tremendous growth and helped thousands of patients as we continue to serve communities throughout Tennessee with world-class physical therapy. Aside from patient care and business successes, we were amazed by the efforts that many of our clinics organized to give back to those in need in their communities. This was especially evident during the Christmas season. The following are some of the amazing stories of giving, as shared by our employees, that demonstrate the servant’s heart of the wonderful people that work at STAR:
“Our gift giving was for a family we knew of from a local church that was in need for the Holidays. It was for a boy and girl- 12 and 4. We purchased toys- games, Legos, learning toys for the little girl and clothing for them. The boy was in bad need of a coat so most of the clothing part for him was spent on that, but we also got them some jeans, t shirts, socks and a dress for the girl. We took the gifts to their church to get passed on to the family :). It was fun and a blessing to collaborate with the other clinics not just with the gift giving, but also with some volunteer work, which also helped us stay in the spirit of giving, not just of gifts, but also of our time.”
“During this fall, my wife was student teaching at a local elementary school. She was in the first grade class for her internship.
Shortly after starting, a new student was assigned her class. This student had just arrived from out of state where his mother had taken his brother and him away from an abusive relationship. They came here where they have some family and are currently staying at a woman’s homeless shelter here in town.
My wife grew quickly attached to this child and his kindness and the loving heart he has despite the tough times he has had in his short life.
As my wife does, she got in touch with all her contacts on social media to see who else might want to support this family and the response was overwhelming. We gathered items from people from multiple states with gifts, gift cards, and money for this mom and the two kids she supports as best she can at this time.
After Christmas, we received pictures of the boys on Christmas morning as they sat in the ocean of gifts they received and once again I felt blessed we can have at least a small impact on this family’s life during this season and appreciate the support STAR gives us to do these things.”
“We reached out to a local organization that is very similar to Make-A-Wish foundation, but for just our county. It is called Kimbo’s Wish and they carry out wishes for children fighting cancer. In this particular case, Kimbo’s Wish had been contacted just days prior about a family who had been adopted off an angle tree, however, those who adopted the family were unable to provide what was needed. That’s were our gift came in as a last minute life savor. With our donation, they were able to provide Christmas dinner and gifts for the 2 children in the family. We were also able to help a teenage boy and his younger sister who are currently living with their aging grandmother as their mom has become subject to the demise of drugs and alcohol. The teenage boy has been walking to one of our local churches and bringing his sister in attempts to become closer to God and learn more of His teachings.”
“We found out about an organization called Grace Point. This is an organization that provides food, shelter, clothing for single, homeless mothers and their children. We were given 3 mothers with their children to choose from. When we came together as a clinic we all agreed we could not just choose a family. We felt the need to help all three. We had found out from the organization that most of the “needs” of the families were taken care of the none of the “wants” have been provided. The list had about 4-5 wants on all the children and at least 2-3 on the mother’s. We were able to get all the wants of the children and at least 2 for each mother. The organization could not believe what we were able to do. We were able to provide a bike (the exact one a child wanted) to a boy who’s only bike was stolen from him, a tablet to another child, 2 xbox games, digital camera, and many other items. We as a clinic were touched by this organization and we all were very grateful to be able to help these families.”
“Initially, we were not sure who we were going to do our Christmas giving for, but God has a plan. Early in December we learned of a youth that was kicked out of his house and spent the night outside in the cold. He had been staying at his girlfriend’s house and couch surfing with friends. He was kicked out of his mothers house about a year ago, and does not have any communication with her or his father. My husband and I took him in to our home for a few days, until another family offered to give him a home until he graduates in May. But with no family, we at our clinic wanted to help him have a great Christmas. Because he is a teenager, we decided to give him gift cards to make sure that he got exactly what he wanted in clothes. His friends also came together to get him some clothes as well. He came to our house to open presents and he was so excited and happy with all the clothes and gift cards. What might have been a very sad Christmas for him ended up being a very happy Christmas where he felt very loved.”
“I personally know a family of 3 kids through my church who are in a very split family. Ages are 19yr old boy, 11yr old boy and 9yr old girl. The 19yr old has Autism. The oldest has a different mother from the youngest two, and father & both mothers are split with the 2 women in/out of jail for drug/alcohol abuse. The kids have been riding our church bus for at least 7-8 years. We usually help them out around Christmas time, but this year our church took a financial hit as well & I didn’t want to see these kids go without some fun this Christmas. I recruited my mom to help me with the shopping for the kids, getting them each a new outfit (pants & shirt, along with training bras for the girl), as well as a new “big” toy each. The 19yr old loves anything with superheroes!! The 11yr old has had to grow up so fast over the last year to help with his older brother & younger sister, that we made sure he can still enjoy his Christmas as a kid. We were also able to give cash to their dad to help with bills or gas as needed.
It was so much fun for my mother & I to deliver the gifts personally & watch them open them! It’s always a blessing to give to someone else in their need, particularly children involved in a situation as this. Blesses the heart!!”
“We partnered with the local Police Department to find a family in need. This single mother has given everything that she has to her children so that they would have a great Christmas. She is $300 behind in rent and has no food though. We were able to give her over $100 in food and $100 in rent to try to help her. The police department threw in toys for the kids.”
“There is a grandmother raising 6 of her daughter’s children under 11 years old. She is still working and has to pay for the school childcare for the 10 days that kids are out of school. So we were able to help her with Christmas gifts for each child since so much of her money was going to child care.”
“We purchased Christmas gifts for a Mom and her two children that are staying in a shelter this Christmas. Safe Haven is the only Middle TN shelter that accepts entire families. This family happened to enter the shelter after the Christmas gift deadline, so we felt especially blessed that we found them and were able to help. There was a 13 year old girl and a 10 year old boy. We were able to purchase just about everything on the list for the children and the mom. The 13 year old girl requested books from several popular series, “The Fault in our Stars”, “Hunger Games” etc. We didn’t have money for all the books she asked for so the daughter of one of our team members, who happened to like the same books, gave her their copy of the books and a couple of DVD’s. In addition to this family, we were also able to purchase clothing and infant toys for two different babies through Project Nena. We had a 5 month old and a 7 month old. We are TRULY blessed to be able to do this every year and words can’t properly express how great it is to give back just a little.”
“We chose to help 4 children with Project Nena for our Christmas giving. We were able to provide clothing, shoes, jackets as well as some toys and jewelry for one of the older girls. This organization helps over 200 children throughout the North East Nashville area. We enjoyed shopping for all these items knowing we were helping children in need during this holiday season.”
“We learned of a woman who is taking care of her 3 grandsons after their mother died in a car accident a few years ago. She still works full-time to support her grandsons, but was forced to be off of work for a month after an injury and has been having a hard time trying to make ends meet. She’s such a sweet lady, and we were able to put some money to good use. We are all thankful for the opportunity to be able to help her out!”
“I had planned a shopping day with my Sunday School class to purchase Angel Tree gifts. While getting this together, I came upon a list from my Pastor for a senior lady and the granddaughter she is caring for. She has been through a lot of tragedies the past two Labor Day weekends. In 2014 she lost a grandson and this year a granddaughter. Our clinic decided to help this family.
She had listed several needs for both herself and granddaughter, but only one want each. Before and during the shopping day we prayed that God would help us stretch our funds and allow us to be good stewards of what He had provided. We were able to get most of the needs she listed which were all clothing items and the biggest blessing was that we were able to get grandma and granddaughter each the “want” items which were new comforter/bedding sets.”
“We had the opportunity to help a single dad in the community who is going through a tough time financially and was unable to provide clothes and Christmas gifts for his 2 children (8 year old son and his 13 yr old daughter). I do not know the specifics of his troubles, but the mother of his children has passed so I’m assuming they have been through a lot. When I spoke to him about what his kids were in need of he said pants, underwear, socks and shoes. I then asked if there was a game or activity they like to do together and he said they loved to roller skate together and it was something their mom used to take them to do. The youngest has grown out of his skates and the oldest had a wheel break on hers. We were able to buy the clothes and shoes they needed with enough money to buy them both a new pair of roller skates!! I hope they are able to make some new, good memories together skating.”
“We were able to help two families that had just recently become homeless. One family was from a local Church that we found and, through the help of a former patient of ours who is a school resource officer at a local school, we were able to help another family. We were able to provide both families with much needed clothing for the winter and some toys. They were so very appreciative for the help. Our single mother family just kept saying we just didn’t understand how this help came right on time because she did not know what she was going to do for her children that were ages 5, 11, and 14. We all have a home to go to each and everyday. Working with this family made me realize how we can take for granted having a safe place to go after a long day. Sometimes we get so caught up into day to day living that we forget there are other people who need our help. It just puts things into perspective and makes the little things we tend to stress over not such a big deal. Seeing the smile on kids faces made this so worthwhile.”
“This lady is on a string of bad luck, and we are so happy we could help her. She and her husband are retired and are on a fixed income. Her husband does some part time work for his former employer when the work is there, but unfortunately, there hasn’t been any lately.
She and her husband are going to have to sell their home and downsize because they can’t afford to stay there. Only getting social security once a month, bills were due and money was tight. She has NINE grandchildren, and could barely voice how much it hurt to not be able to buy them once single thing. We gave her the money to buy each one of them something special. She was overwhelmed with gratitude. For her, it was being able to shop for those kids, wrap their gifts with love, and watch their happiness as they opened them that has made this Christmas more special than she thought it would be.”
“This was a special treat to give back to this particular family that actually attends my church. The family’s wish list for gifts was given to the church in our “Gifts in His Name” program. The family of 5, consists is a single mom with 11, 10, 8 and 5 year old children. The mother asked for basic clothes, 1 toy for each child and a food gift card for her. We felt a calling to go above and beyond.
Each Child received double the amount of clothes, a new jacket and shoes. As for toys, each child will receive more than they ever could have expected. The mother got a $150 gift card and a gift also. We then had a wrapping party. It is good to see a group from across Middle Tennessee come together to give back not only time, but each out of our own blessings.
The church was very excited to see what we had done. The fact we gave more than they expected show them what a caring company and workers we have here at STAR PT. The church will also provide new backpacks, school supplies and lunch food to help the family until school starts.
In a time when each of us looks to buy the very best for our family and friends, it is nice to see that God really wants us to give with a loving heart. He gave his son at this time and now we should always look to give back.”
“We were made aware of a family of 5 in the area. The Dad has recently lost his job and they were not able to buy Christmas gifts for their 3 boys, ages 13, 10, and 2. The older boys love to read and play video games so we got them each gift cards to Barnes & Noble and Game Stop. We also got the 2 year old new shoes and some toys.”
“We found out about a single mom with 2 kids – 11 year old boy and 7 year old girl. The mom had just recently lost her job in October and had just started receiving help from a help center. She had just been in that morning to ask for help with Christmas when we had called later that day to ask for information on any families that may need help this Christmas season. We spoke with her and were moved by the amount of love she had for her kids and her only wish was for us to provide a few gifts so her kids would not be disappointed Christmas morning. We were able to provide clothes and toys and games the kids would love to have. We also were able to give the mom a gift card to Kroger to help with grocery expenses. It was such a blessing to be able to help this family for Christmas.”
“We were able to help a breast cancer survivor, recently having undergone double mastectomy and having expanders placed for upcoming reconstruction in January. She had recently gotten an order from her MD to have custom compression garments made for each arm but was devastated to find out that insurance would not pay for them. She and her husband were already struggling with paying her recent medical bills and even had resorted to getting their food from a local food bank. We were able to coordinate with the company making the garments and get her 2 pairs for each arm.”
“This year we adopted a local family in which both parents are veterans of the armed forces and have 3 children. The mom is very active at the children’s school and does a lot of volunteering and substituting for the school. We heard that dad was laid off from his job just a couple weeks ago so we decided this was “our” family in need this year. We were able to get the children (ages 5, 7, and 14) clothes, shoes, and toys. We were also able to get Mom and Dad clothes and a gift card to have a nice dinner together!”
“We were able to help 3 people that are the breadwinners of their family and are currently out of work, making Christmas nearly impossible. 2 are grandparents and leading a multi-generational family living under 1 roof. 3 families will received Visa gift cards to use for gifts, food for Christmas dinner or to help make ends meet.”
“We were able to help 4 families. 1 is a military wife who’s husband is to deploy to S Korea next month. 2 & 3 are single mothers with very little & 4 is a family whose mother recently passed away & could use a little giving.”
“We adopted two little boys who are brothers from the Men of Valor Program. This is a ministry that supports families of men who are in prison or have recently been released from prison. The brothers are 8 and 10 years old. We were able to buy them each 2 winter jackets, some clothes, a basketball and soccer ball, each a video game, and a study bible.”
“Some of our Rutherford County STAR family got together to give back to the communities that we work in each day!!! We had staff from all 3 Murfreesboro clinics, the Business Office, and even invited a few family and friends to join!!!
We got together and participated in the TONS OF LOVE program with Feed America First, and in just a couple of short hours we were able to individually bag uncooked rice to be distributed to local food banks and churches to help feed families through the holidays! This is a fabulous organization! While we were there a lady named Julie shared with us on average they distribute enough food to feed OVER 30,000 families a month in Tennessee and Kentucky! They are currently building a new warehouse and hope to triple their business in the next year.
In just TWO hours we were able to bag the rice, box it for distribution, and clean up our mess for 1,170 families!!! It was such a fun service project to do together, and we look forward to finding more way to serve together in the future!!
I am so blessed to be able to work with such a fun group of people that truly love to serve others!”