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In January 2024, Keko was the recipient of an ATI Foundation grant. They used this funding to support their passion for sled hockey. Their passion began with the All-In program at Center for Human Development (CHD), a barrier-free recreation program that promotes an active life for everybody.

Social and recreational programs for people with disabilities are hard to come by, and even harder for folks to participate in. Because many people with physical impairments live below the poverty line and have major health concerns, the majority of their income goes toward their physical health and wellbeing. While we are here to support medical needs and therapies not covered by insurance, we’re also honored to support other expenses in life, such as home modifications or recreation programs. At the ATI Foundation, we want to support the things that fulfill your life; the things that make you you.

And that’s why we’re so proud to support people like Keko. We’d like to share an email we received from Keko who recently graduated with their GED:

“It’s never too late to start again. What started out as a goal to show my children it’s never too late to succeed turned into an opportunity for immense personal growth and an even greater increase in self-confidence.

The confidence I gained from chasing my sled hockey dreams over the last year transformed the narrative of my life. I realized failures were just pauses, time to reevaluate and push forward. My success wasn’t tied to a scoreboard but rather my own personal improvement over the season. I applied this same logic when I decided to chase my GED.

Sled hockey taught me I was worth the effort I put into myself and the ATI Foundation grant I received enabled me to keep pursuing that self-confidence I found in sled hockey. With the encouragement from those around me and my new-found confidence, I boldly chose to start again and pursue my GED.

Now I sit here before you, officially a GED graduate. Having started again once more with a new-found confidence and a smile that reaches my soul. I’m proud of who I am and what I have overcome. I am proud that, time after time, I chose to start again, each time bringing me closer to success than the last. I know now that I am worth the effort. My dreams cannot be deferred. It is never too late to start again.” – Keko

We’re so proud of Keko; proud to be a small part of their journey and to see the confidence they have built up to change the course of their life. Congratulations on receiving your GED!

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