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Stay at Home Solutions blogs on topics such as aging in place, universal design, adaptive equipment, home modifications, accessibility, durable medical equipment, legislation, and caregiving.

Midwest Ability Summit Experience and EXCITING Announcement!

 Photo: Amanda Pearman

Photo: Amanda Pearman

(FYI: This post is an overview about my experience at the Midwest Ability Summit this last Saturday. BUT if you want to skip down to the bottom to read my exciting announcement, I wouldn’t blame you!)

Oh my! This past Saturday was fantastic! I had a booth at the Midwest Ability Summit at the Overland Park Convention Center in Overland Park, KS. This event is an ability expo that showcases various resources in the Kansas City metro for people with disabilities, their family members, caregivers, and health care professionals. There were educational classes, non-profit organizations, service providers, and tons more from law groups to home health companies!

Check out midwestabilitysummit.org to see all of the exhibitors from this year! Also, click here to learn more about the purpose of Stay at Home Solutions!

Personally, I felt so happy for my booth to sit right next to the KSDS Assistance Dogs because I got to sneak over and pet the doggies in training! For you animal lovers, there were also adorable therapy mini ponies at the summit. Never discount the health benefits of our four-legged friends!

 Photo: David Groves

Photo: David Groves

There were many other sights to take in at this event. I enjoyed watching the tennis demonstration area directly across from my booth. The happy expressions on the children and adults lobbying tennis balls to each other felt palpable! In fact, I tossed a couple of stray balls back into action. In addition to a sports viewing, I saw children and adults test recumbent bikes and power wheelchairs and standing frames around the convention center floor with huge grins. Everybody was having fun!

To add to the festivities, my booth offered candy amid other freebies like pens, sticky pads, and chapstick. I heard many parents bemoan the fact that the summit was like Halloween because of the vast amounts of candy within reach for the children! My booth neighbors came and grabbed candy for a quick snack every once in a while in between people. Visitors hauled tote bags full of goodies and information around the venue while talking to exhibitors.

The summit impressed me with the consideration of their guests! For instance, they provided a quiet/ sensory friendly area for people who needed a break from the stimulating sights and sounds. The displays were fantastic too! My friend and frequent project collaborator, David Groves of Accessible RehabWorks, set up a barrier free shower, patio, and wooden ramp. It looked amazing and added to the atmosphere of this event.

I was also delighted to see organizations represented at the summit that contribute excellent services to the community and I deeply support, like Minds Matter!

I felt so pleased to have many people come visit at my booth! I was happy to answer questions about my business and home modifications. Here are some of the most frequent ones:

Question: “How far out do you visit people?”

Answer: I see everyone in the Kansas City area in about a 50 mile radius. I am willing to Skype or do some other type of video communication with people who live outside of the area. For people who live outside Kansas City, I offered to help find home modification occupational therapists for people, like in Texas and Colorado.

Question: “Do you read blueprints?”

Answer: Yes, I do! I am happy to consult for people planning on building houses in order for them to live safely and independently.

Question: “I live in an apartment/townhouse. Can you help me?”

Answer: Absolutely yes! The Fair Housing Act ensures landlords allow reasonable accommodations be made for their residents. I recommend home modifications that will benefit you and make your landlord happy.

Question: “Do you see people of all ages?”

Answer: Yes, I am happy to see everybody! Everyone deserves to live in their home safely and independently without worry of moving to a facility!

 Photo: Amanda Pearman

Photo: Amanda Pearman

Question: “Do you take insurance?”

Answer: I take Missouri Medicare and am able to bill all of the managed care insurance companies for Medicare beneficiaries like Blue Cross Blue Shield, Aetna, Coventry, etc.

Question: “Are you an occupational therapist?”

Answer: Why yes I am!

There were visitors who asked specific questions about their home. For example, I helped a lady problem solve how to prevent water from spreading all over her bathroom floor from her barrier free shower. Another couple discussed options for downsizing their current home to make sure they could age in place in the community as opposed to going to a facility. I thoroughly enjoyed talking to people and learning about their needs and concerns for staying at home.

 Photo: Pexels

Photo: Pexels

Hear ye! Hear ye! Okay, now are you ready for my EXCITING announcement!

I have a RAFFLE for a FREE home evaluation! This is for all ages! If you win, I will come to your home and give you options on what you can do to live safely and independently! There are no prerequisites for a home evaluation (like a history of falls or disability). Every single person on the planet benefits from a professional like me to come give you ideas!

How do you enter? Like my Facebook page (@stayathomesolutionskc) by August 30th at 9 PM to enter the raffle! If you have already liked my Facebook page, please follow me on Instagram (@stayathomesolutions) or Pinterest (Stay at Home Solutions) to enter the raffle! Remember, I also post videos on YouTube at Stay at Home Solutions.

If you win the free home evaluation and you would like to gift it to a friend or family member, you sure can!

The winner will be announced this Friday, August 31st at noon on Facebook! Tune in to see who wins this amazing prize! Contests like these make me feel so excited!

I promise to shoot the Facebook video in landscape this time!

Lastly, I just wanted to say how honored I am to be included in the Midwest Ability Summit. The organizers are lovely, big-hearted people to create a one-stop shop for people of all different conditions and backgrounds. The summit was all inclusive and fun for attendees! I look forward to being a part of this event next year!