Charity Spotlight: Origami Brain Injury Rehabilitation Center

Holistic treatment for adults who have suffered from a brain injury.

Origami Brain Injury Rehabilitation Center gives personalized care and recovery in a natural setting to those who have suffered a brain injury. Just as each mind and each injury is different, so too must be the treatment.

In this charity spotlight, I spoke with Origami’s Executive Director, Tammy Hannah, and Business Development Manager, Yvonne Fleener.

Origin Story

Brain injuries are unlike any other injury a person might endure. They can be debilitating, but sometimes they can be easy to hide. They can come on suddenly or manifest over a long period of time. They can be caused by trauma, such as a car accident, or by disease, like an aneurysm. They can affect every aspect of a person’s life. They can affect the loved ones who are part of a person’s life.

The most complicated part of our body has no prescribed treatment for when it is injured. Yet there are treatments that work, and it isn’t uncommon for people to make partial or even full recoveries after they have suffered a brain injury.

Treatments that work are personal. They are designed specifically for each individual’s injury and are as unique as the injuries themselves. These treatments must be adapted over time and require a wide variety of techniques, experience, and support.

All of this is as true today as it was in the mid-90s when members of Michigan State University’s College of Osteopathic Medicine and Peckham, Inc. envisioned a way they could provide everything someone recovering from a brain injury might need. That vision became the Origami Brain Injury Rehabilitation Center.

Today

To provide the best care to each patient, Origami offers neural rehabilitation, physical and occupational therapy, vision, cognitive, and memory training, and a variety of specialized therapies. The center also helps patients manage daily routines, medication, money, cooking, dating, parenting, and vocational skills.

One facet of care that every patient receives is a system of support. Origami encourages family members to visit at any time and provides family and marriage counseling. Patients also see the same staff throughout their rehabilitation.

Residents can be assisted 24/7, live semi-independently in their own rooms, or stay in an on-site apartment with phone support available as needed. Origami also offers outpatient- and community-based care.

Origami sits amidst 35 acres of woodland property that offers patients tranquility, space, and freedom. The natural setting is complemented by hands-on activities for patients such as gardens, an art studio, and a wood shop. Computer-assisted recovery is also offered using devices such as a driving simulator and Nintendo Wii.

Goals

Tammy and Yvonne agree that one of their ongoing goals is to raise awareness about brain injuries, their prevention, and the treatments that Origami provides. Origami has also recently completed the first of five phases to develop and take full advantage of the naturally enriching environment that surrounds them.

Big Wins

By increasing the number of people who can be treated at any given time, adding new methods of treatment, and bringing in additional staff, Origami has been able to help many more people than they could nearly twenty years ago.

In fact, Origami recently started working with their 1,000th client! Helping so many people—and their families—has been and will continue to be a very uplifting accomplishment.

For Donors and Volunteers

If you’re deciding where to direct your energy, listen to the stories about who the charity has helped, witness a charity’s purpose first-hand, and pick what feels right.

As you volunteer, create your own stories. Support a person, be their cheerleader and their friend. You’ll make a huge difference in someone’s life.

For Nonprofits

When working for a nonprofit, make sure everything you do is in support of your mission. Tammy recommends you let your mission guide every decision you make. Teaming up with other nonprofits is also a great way to do a lot of good while still allowing you to focus on your strengths.

Get Involved

If you want to learn more about Origami Brain Injury Rehabilitation Center, you can reach them by clicking one of the buttons below.

Photographs Courtesy of Origami Brain Injury Rehabilitation Center.