I found out about EMBRACED via volunteering through my company. I am SO glad I found out about this service! I obtained a walker and back brace for my grandmother who recently fell and had to have back surgery. These items helped her regain her independence. The best part about the service, besides the friendly staff and easy process, is its free! If my grandmother had to go through insurance, this would have cost hundreds of dollars. THANK YOU EMBRACED for all your help!
Review from Guidestar
I have worked in the sustainability arena since 1997 with an extensive background in multi-stakeholder initiatives with corporations, government and NGO’s. Using systems thinking the goal is to develop and deploy cutting edge organizations, standards and programs that provide positive reduction in environmental impact, economic and social benefits.
Embraced meets and exceeds this criteria as an innovative servant leadership organization. Through it’s mission Embraced provides a solution “to ensure that all people have access to quality orthopaedic and prosthetic devices that can improve the quality of their lives”. Embraced embodies the pioneering spirit having uncovered an unmet societal need and fulfilling a meaningful mission that truly gives back— adhering to the highest level of professionalism and ethics.
Review from Guidestar
I am a professional in the sustainability sector who learned of Embraced through discussions with a Board member. Obviously, the reuse component of Embraced is vital to environmental stewardship. Not only does Embraced collect and distribute gently-used durable medical supplies (crutches, wheelchairs, walkers, etc.) but it also reuses bins donated from a major product manufacturer to collect the equipment. This is the definition of " reuse squared" - saving millions of tons of waste from the landfill! But the great news is the reuse factor is just a pleasant by-product of the real mission of Embraced.
I have viewed video testimonials of the patients who have been served Embraced . Their stories validate that the mission of Embraced is being brought to life by providing mobility and independence to those less fortunate.
Lauren, below is my review...please edit if necessary and send back comments and I will upload to GuideStar.
On a personal note, I have met Lauren O'Brien, the executive director of Embraced. Lauren's passion for Embraced is real. Her drive and vision for the organization is built on the principle "the mother of invention is necessity." Lauren personally experienced being injured. She realized, upon her recovery, the medical equipment that provided her own independence was still in good condition and was not being used. There had to be a way to extend the life of the equipment AND helping the medically under-served. Thus, the concept of Embraced was born.
Embraced is also very active in the community generating awareness and support through carefully planned activities of its volunteers and Board members. In addition to much needed funding from donors and grants, Embraced is being built by hundreds of hours of sweat equity.
Anyone serving or served by Embraced cannot help but experience a sense of purpose and value. It meets the triple bottom line - it is an environmentally, economically, and socially valuable service.
I had an opportunity to be involved with an Embraced event this year and the experience was life changing.
Volunteers often work long hard hours and although they receive satisfaction of "doing something good" they rarely have an opportunity to witness the foundation at work. I had the pleasure of seeing Embraced at work first hand, how it impacts people in need and the hospitals that supply the care.
The night before Battle of the Burgers, the largest Embraced event of the year, Lauren (Embraced founder) received a call that a young girl had been severely injured and needed assistance with supplies. We had been working all day loading trucks and getting set up for the next day's event when Lauren said without hesitation, "I need to make a delivery", and guess who was driving.
Like most of us, I've only walked into hospitals a few times and it was always to visit someone I knew and loved so this was very different for me, but not for Lauren. Regardless of the circumstances, we're all uncomfortable entering a hospital but the words of praise we received from the doctor put me right at ease. The doctor was shocked how quick Embraced responded and admitted that most supplies take several days, if not weeks to arrive. She also warned us the injured girl was in terrible pain and understandably not easy to deal with.
I watched from the door as Lauren introduced herself to the family and began a dialogue with the injured girl. I expected a difficult situation but Lauren had an incredible one on one with the patient. She explained everything from how to use the equipment to how she should donate it to another in need when she had recovered. By the time we left the little girl was laughing and, if only for a few minutes of that day, Embraced had made an incredible impact on their lives - going forward the impact is truly immeasurable.
Battle of the Burgers was a great experience, a huge success and a memorable event but the event that I talk about and remember is that day in the hospital when I saw a wonderful foundation at work.
Embraced is a wonderful organization with an amazing mission. I have volunteered during their sort days as well as at their fundraising event. I always feel fulfilled knowing I am helping an organization I believe in. When I first heard about what Embraced does, I thought it seemed like such an obvious need and I couldn't believe there weren't more people already doing what Embraced does. This organization fills a need and does it well. I look forward to volunteering with them many more times!!
I have volunteered for Embraced on several occasions and each experience has been amazing! I love the fundamental concept behind Embraced: gathering of medical supplies from those who no longer require them and redistribution to people who are in desperate need of them! Not only does Embraced satisfy the medical needs of thousands of people, often in destitute areas, but it has the added bonus of eliminating waste from the places where they collect the supplies. This knowledge is undoubtedly one of the reasons why I feel volunteering for Embraced is so fulfilling and keeps me coming back.
The best volunteering experience I have had with Embraced was emptying their warehouse after the earthquake disaster in Haiti and sending every last supply to the battered country. The extensive media coverage made the Haitian's suffering almost palpable and to be able to contribute to the relief efforts in a small way was unbelievably rewarding.