27 May Amazing Athletes of Eastern Oklahoma owner, Michael Amberg, named Therapy Volunteer of the Year!
Each month, Michael Amberg and his team of coaches pool their time and resources to teach Amazing Athletes’ sports enrichment program to young children with disabilities at The Little Light House, an all-volunteer child development center that is dedicated to improving the lives of children with special needs. For his volunteer commitment to helping advance the motor function and life skills in these very special young students, Amberg was honored as this year’s Therapy Volunteer of the Year at The Little Light House’s Volunteer Appreciation Banquet on May 8.
Little Light House’s Therapy Volunteer of the Year Award is given each year to one outstanding volunteer who has shown a tremendous commitment to improving the lives of children at the center and going above and beyond the call of duty in his or her volunteer efforts. Amberg has proven to show a tireless devotion to the students at The Little Light House by providing his adaptive sports enrichment program to the students every month, as well as volunteering his time for other organizational activities at the center throughout the year.
“I am energized by the amount of pure joy and excitement these kids show when we come in to coach classes at the Little Light House. It is inspiring to my staff and I to see them doing things that most people wouldn’t even think possible. To win this award is both surprising and incredible humbling. We truly love what we do and I feel that we get so much more out of it than the kids do,” said Amberg.
Through Amazing Athletes’ adaptive sports enrichment program, the students at Little Light House are not hindered by their special circumstances; instead, they are motivated to get moving and have fun, which – according to Amberg – is what it’s all about.
“My coaches find the classes so rewarding that they sometimes ask not to coach at their regular classes that they get paid for so they can coach at The Little Light House as a volunteer,” said Amberg. “It is the most rewarding thing I have done since I started coaching. I love it!”
As excited as Amberg and his staff are to coach the children at The Little Light House, the students and teaching staff at the children’s center feel just the same.
“The children’s and staff’s total excitement for their arrival on ‘Amazing Athletes Days’ is but one indicator of the success of this program and benefits to the students of the Little Light House,” said Dede Flatley, a physical therapist at The Little Light House. “Improvement in the developmental motor activities in the lives of our children is noticeable during each class.”
Amberg has dedicated his life to helping children achieve their highest potential through sports. Not only do the children at Little Light House have the opportunity to get moving, develop their gross and fine motor skill function, and establish healthy exercise habits, but the children also take with them life skills like confidence, teamwork and goal-setting that will last a lifetime.