Please share this information and link with as many people as you can. Together, we can continue to protect the necessary benefits of all catastrophically injured auto accident victims.
We love spreading awareness about our program, especially within the surrounding neighborhoods and communities that are near our Warren, MI locations. This month, we had the pleasure showcasing Unique Options in the Grosse Pointe Magazine! A big thank you to the magazine editors and Shelley Owens for their beautifully written write-up on our programs and dedication to the traumatic brain injury community.
The TBI community is extremely vocal about their personal experiences, and we love sharing different perspectives for both clients and professionals to reflect on. You never know when one person's point of view could change your own! Read the article here.
Because Monday's can be hard. So can Tuesday's. In fact, we all need a little nudge to keep us motivated throughout the week. Our Facebook page is full of fun and inspiring messages to keep you plugging through those difficult moments. Need a heavy dose of motivation? Check out our Pinterest boards for pages full of inspiring messages!
With concussion awareness more prevalent in the news than ever before, it seems everyday scientists are finding new ways to combat TBI symptoms and find faster ways to diagnosis brain injuries. Make sure to follow our Facebook page to stay up to date with the most recent studies in the news! Read the article here.
Breaking News & Headlines
When comedian and actor Tracy Morgan suffered a traumatic brain injury due to a horrific car wreck, we followed the story from beginning to end. As TBI's become more present in the news, sharing and supporting these headlines will only help bring about more awareness. Read the article here.
Did you hear the news? We recently opened our FOURTH location and newest retail training enclave! UniQuely Yours is an upscale consignment resale shop, located in the heart of Roseville, MI. We just opened so there's still plenty of time to get your hands on amazing designer deals! Being able to provide our clients with hands-on retail training is a service we're thrilled to be able to provide. Make sure to like UniQuely Yours' Facebook page as well to stay up to date with what's happening in the store!
Follow us on Facebook and see what we're up to today!
Unique Options, LLC is always looking for new ways to expand our reach, provide more services for our clients, and give those who are willing to work the best opportunities to master their skills.
We are proud to announce the opening of our newest enclave, UniQuely Yours!
UniQuely Yours is a upscale resale consignment shop, specializing in women's clothing, men's clothing, and home decor. Located in the heart of Roseville, MI, UniQuely Yours offers one-of-a-kind designer pieces and exclusive items that you won't find anywhere else!
While our current Warren, MI facility provides clients with retail training on a smaller scale, with Karen's Korner, UniQuely Yours will immerse our clients into a full-scale small business. Starting from the beginning, clients will work with us on inventory, pricing, store layout, making purchases, and providing excellent customer service.
Our GRAND OPENING is scheduled for Wednesday, July 22nd from 4:00 - 6:30 and we look forward to seeing you all there for food, drinks, ribbon cutting ceremony and of course...SHOPPING!
Have you been looking for opportunities to master your retail training skills? If so, give us a call and schedule a tour, and see how Unique Options, LLC can get you back to meaningful work!
Have you been looking for a new t shirt that beams with the joy you feel all summer long? We recently stocked our Unique Options Store with new radiant yellow t shirts that are motivating our staff and clients to keep their spirits high throughout the summer!
Want to purchase a shirt for yourself? Stop by our main location and head on over to Karen's Korner. They're only $9 so you can stock up for everyone you know! We have sizes available from Small - 4XL.
Change can be difficult for anyone to handle, depending on the circumstances, but especially challenging for those who have suffered traumatic brain injuries. At Unique Options, we do our best to provide a safe and structured environment for our clients on a daily basis, but such is life, and change happens all the time.
How can we find better ways to cope with stressful change? The answer to this question will depend on your perspective and the circumstance of change. We talked with some of our staff and clients on what they find works best when dealing with all of the ups and downs that life has to offer.
How do you cope with change?
Did you hear about Senate Bill 248?
In less than 36 hours, the Senate passed out of committee and voted on SB 248, a bill which alters no-fault auto insurance significantly.
Help protect Auto No Fault by contacting your State Representative NOW and tell them to VOTE NO on SB 248!
Did you know that improper body mechanics when performing the simplest tasks can be detrimental to your physical health? At Unique Options, we strive to ensure that all of our staff and clients are practicing proper body mechanics and ergonomics while they are working at any type of job. We've implemented tools and tips to help everyone work smarter at our own facilities, and have put together a list of what you can do to improve the ergonomics in your everyday life!
What is Ergonomics?
The word ‘ergonomics’ can be defined as ‘the study of work.’ This means finding the right fit for each individual and job. In order to maintain this balance, ergonomics works to find adaptations with work placement, environment, and design. When looking to eliminate and reduce the rate of workplace injuries, ergonomics focuses on with every employee’s abilities and limitations. The following examples are common types of ergonomic hazards:
- Repetitive Movements
- Forceful Movements
- Improper Postures
- Improper Workstations
- Improper Tools/Equipment
Let’s go over a few ways you can implement ergonomic solutions to improve your working conditions:
Chances are you’re currently sitting at a desk and are in front of a computer. The way your chair is positioned and how you are sitting could potentially be causing stress and strain on your entire body. Any office chair that you will be sitting in for long periods of time should ideally have the ability to adjust the height, back, and arm rests. These types of chairs give you lumbar support. Additionally, your feet should rest flat on the floor or on a footrest if you suffer from lower back pain. Overall, you should be able to sit comfortably and straight, without slouching or hunching to work, in every chair you sit in for long periods of time. As an added bonus, always make sure to rotate positions from sitting to standing every 20 to 30 minutes
Not all jobs require you to sit, and being on your feet all day can be tiring. By incorporating good posture into your ergonomic routine, you can prevent future injuries. Make sure to always stand tall, in order to allow the curves in your back to remain neutral. When you slouch you create more stress on your back, and your energy diminishes, which is why it is important to bring your work closer to the middle of your body. Shifting your weight between your legs, and remembering not to lock your knees, is also important when standing properly.
If your job requires lifting, make sure to always turn your entire body in the direction of the objects you’re lifting, instead of just twisting. Any object you are lifting should be close to your body, and never try and lift something that is extremely heavy. Proper body mechanics for lifting entails bending your knees, keeping your back straight as you lean, and then straightening upright as you lift. When you need to bend down to lift up something light or quickly, try using the ‘golfer lift,’ which is accomplished by bending one knee, pivoting off the floor with the opposite leg, and bending over. Always hold onto a table or chair for support when squatting or lifting, whenever possible.
Do your eyes ever feel tired or dry? Do you suffer from headaches at work? This could be due to poor lighting or glares of light surrounding your space. To minimize visual issues due to improper lighting, make sure your computer screens and lights are properly position and adjusted. Use tasks lights to help focus light onto areas of your workspace that you’re using the most. Also, try adding glare covers for your computer monitors to reduce stress on your eyes, as well as placing it directly within your natural line of vision, about 12 to 15 inches away. Whenever possible, your best option is to always opt for natural light!
Learn more about ergonomics and proper body mechanics by heading over to the OSHA website and start working better today!
This past week we had the honor of having State Representative Derek Miller stop by Unique Options for a tour and for a discussion about Michigan Auto No-Fault.
The tour went extremely well, and Representative Miller was very impressed with all of the real work opportunities we provide our clients. He was amazed to see how hard our clients work and the many steps that are taken to ensure that we not only meet our customers' expectations, but that our clients are successful in all that they do. Representative Miller also said that having never before toured a program like ours, he didn't know what to expect, but it is so impressive that it is something everyone has to see for themselves.
After the tour, we spent some time with Representative Miller discussing Michigan's Auto No-Fault system and the important role it plays in our clients lives. He said that he feels No-Fault is important and needs to be protected so people can receive the care they need, and sustain a quality life after a major accident. Representative Miller went on to say that he also appreciates that Auto No-Fault is covered by other drivers and doesn't create a cost shift that would then become a financial burden for the State of Michigan.
State Representative Derek Miller is a Democrat currently serving his first term in the Michigan House, and serves on the Insurance Committee and the Energy Committee. He represents Michigan's 28th district which includes Centerline and large portion of Warren. Representative Miller comes from a family that has long history of serving the City of Warren. His father served in the Michigan Senate from 1977 - 2003 and his grandfather was elected as the first Mayor of Warren in 1957.
Unique Options would like to thank State Representative Derek Miller for taking the time to come and learn about vocational rehabilitation, as well as his support of the Michigan Auto No-Fault Insurance System.
While we've been celebrating and promoting brain injuries all month long, March 18th was the official day for brain injury awareness! Unique Options has been actively engaging with the traumatic brain injury community, in order to shed more light on these invisible injuries and create positive change for the future. Wondering what we've been up to?
Spreading Awareness About Traumatic Brain Injuries By Educating Others
Kim Goodwin & Tim Hoste of Unique Options visited the CW50 to talk about employment opportunities that Unique Options hosts for the traumatic brain injury community. Click the picture below to watch their segment that discusses how we provide high level vocational training to all levels and abilities for the TBI community.
Spreading Awareness About Traumatic Brain Injuries By Contacting State Representatives
Everyone at Unique Options are actively engaged in helping push policies and proactive changes that would benefit the traumatic brain injury community. This month, we focused on writing to our state representatives in support of Senate Bill 41, otherwise known as the Michigan Brain Injury Law. With help from both staff and clients at Unique Options, who continuously voice their support for Senate Bill 41, we hope to truly make an impact on our state representatives and their decisions. Click here to contact your state senator and representatives, and show your support towards positive legislation for the TBI community!
Spreading Awareness About Traumatic Brain Injuries By Wearing Green!
Everyone at Unique Options has been sporting new green bracelets with our motto: Keep Calm & Work On! In support of Brain Injury Awareness month, Unique Options will be giving away hundreds of our green bracelets at the Carnival of Care conference on 3/22/15. Stop by our booth, play some games, and show your support all year long!
Spreading Awareness About Traumatic Brain Injuries By Sharing Personal Experiences & Support
We've shared tips and suggestions on how to spread awareness about traumatic brain injuries all month long on our Facebook page, but also wanted to hear from you! Our staff and clients shared their personal experiences, either from living with a brain injury or supporting the community, and how they help make a difference in lives every day. How are you helping promote brain injury awareness? Let us know in the comments below!
In honor of Brain Injury Awareness Month, we want to educate you on the facts about TBI.
The detrimental list of disabilities and issues that occur after sustaining a TBI is unique to each individual experiencing a brain injury. However, the impact that brain injuries have on our community is a very present and current reality that we all need to take more time to learn about.
Check back with us next week for tips on how to prevent brain injuries!
Unique Options, LLC is kicking off Brain Injury Awareness Month with motivation that will convince you to spread awareness all month long!
Unique Options, LLC is a proud participant in the 2015 Neuro Film Festival! We followed two of our dedicated clients, Melvin & Jeff, as they shared their stories about their lives inside and out of Unique Options, LLC. Both stories shed light on the realities of living with a traumatic brain injury, along with the motivation to help spread awareness across your community.
How can you help make a difference? You can vote for Melvin & Jeff! During March 3rd - March 10th, the 2015 Neuro Film Festival will be tallying votes for your favorite video. Watch the videos below and pick which one spoke to you the most. Click here to submit your vote for Melvin or Jeff, and help them win the Fan Favorite Award!
Don't forget to follow us on Facebook for more great ways to help spread awareness all month long!
March is Brain Injury Awareness Month. Unique Options, LLC strives to bring positive light and hope to brain injury survivors, by spreading their message and educating the public on the realities of a traumatic brain injury.
Nearly 2.4 million people incur a brain injury every year in the United States. Many of those individuals are thrown into a lifelong battle with physical, mental, and cognitive disabilities. With proper therapeutic and vocational rehabilitation, Unique Options, LLC is continuously working to make the future for traumatic brain injury survivors brighter. During the month of March, Unique Options, LLC encourages you to follow along with us as we bring forth more awareness for traumatic brain injuries, and honor the millions who are living with brain injuries today.
We’ll offer opportunities for you to give back to the brain injury community, spread awareness with those you know, and become an intricate member of providing real solutions for those living with a brain injury. Join Unique Options, LLC in the journey to shine a light on traumatic brain injuries and promote advocacy for creating a more meaningful future for every survivor!
Read to get started now? Subscribe to our blog below and follow us on Facebook for daily updates on brain injury awareness and how you can help make a difference!
Valentine’s Day is almost upon us, and while many embrace the holiday as a way to show their loved one’s just how much they care, it can be a difficult time for others. This year, don’t forget about those who are suffering from brain injuries, and may find it more difficult to express their emotions.
At Unique Options, we work with clients who have difficulty grasping their inner sensitivities. When someone acquires a traumatic brain injury, the psychological problems that can build from emotional stress are often too much for an individual to tackle on their own. This is why our program offers a safe and comfortable environment, to allow our clients to express their emotions, and work through their actions appropriately.
Below are some of the most common emotional symptoms that TBI survivors experience, and how you can take more proactive steps to help them cope.
- Mood Swings: Some people experience up’s and down’s faster than we can process. We often refer to this as an ‘emotional roller coaster,’ as many clients will go from happy to sad, in an extremely fast amount of time. These mood swings can happen for no specific reason, and shouldn't be taken personally by those on the opposite end.
- How Can You Help: If you happen to receive the aftermath of a mood swing, make sure to always remain calm. Try to speak quietly to the person experiencing the emotional roller coaster, and remain supportive of the situation.
- Depression: This is one of the most common emotional symptoms that go along with having a TBI. Many survivors morn the loss of what they once were, how they functioned before their injury, and the overwhelming sensation of change. This can also be a chemical reaction that shows face several months after incurring a brain injury.
- How Can You Help: Be as supportive and encouraging as possible, but understand that you won’t always be able to fix the problem. Medication, along with routine diet and exercise, can help curb depression issues for those with a TBI. If you know someone is experiencing these symptoms, don’t wait to speak up. Make sure they know they have your support!
- Anxiety: You know that feeling when your nerves take over, and all logical thinking goes out the window? So do those who’ve experience a brain injury. TBI clients are more likely to exhibit symptoms of anxiety frequently. This is often due to the difficulty caused by focusing, concentrating, or not understand what is being explained to them. Additionally, large crowds, physical limitations, or time constraints, can also be an anxiety trigger.
- How Can You Help: Keep things small and simple! When explaining information to someone with a TBI, keep your directions clear and concise. Offer reassuring assistance and provide as much structure for a situation, when you can.
- Irritability: Many people that have sustained a TBI end up struggling with tolerance issues. Their irritability increases, and it can often appear that they’re frequently agitated. Injuries that occur in the brain that control these areas are common with those suffering from a brain injury, and can also work in conjunction with their anxiety.
- How Can You Help: Again, we want to remind you to not take these situations personally. Avoid rationalizing with the other person, and give them some space to calm down. However, don’t shy away from letting the individual know that their behavior is an appropriate way for them to express themselves, and find a moment to talk about why the incident happened, at a later time.
What suggestions do you find work best when dealing with emotional extremes? Let us know in the comments below!
Looking for more important information and content on how to work with those with TBI's? Make sure to 'like' us on Facebook for daily updates on what's occurring in the world of brain injuries!
by Tim Hoste
In the January 22, 2015 Detroit Free Press, readers were greeted by a full page advertisement about the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association (MCCA). In what appears to be nothing more than a poor attempt to gain attention for a new radio program on a small time, low end of the dial radio station, this sub par attempt at "informing" the public is missing one important element...fact.
The first glaring statement that proves this advertisement is nothing more than a poorly worded opinion piece is the reference to the MCCA having $20 billion in the fund. The total amount of money in the MCCA's fund has been at the forefront of many auto no-fault related discussions for a number of years now, and even after numerous Freedom of Information Act requests and court battles, no definitive number has ever been presented. There has long been speculation as to the amount of money in this fund, as well as its overall sustainability, but as described in numerous independent audits of the MCCA, the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association uses accounting practices which differ from accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America.[i] This statement alone proves that before any statement can be made as to the financial status of the MCCA, further information is needed to truly understand the viability of the fund.
The second statement that shows whoever authored the advertisement does not have a strong understanding of how the MCCA operates in the sentence that reads, the MCCA reimburses a very small percentage of those not playing by the rules, meanwhile, a high percentage of people who play by the rules are paying for all of this. The MCCA is simply a re-insurer for any insurance company that writes auto insurance policies in the State of Michigan. While the responsibility of each claim falls on the various insurance companies, the MCCA will reimburse them for every dollar spent beyond the first $530,000. The purpose of the MCCA was to even the playing field for all auto insurers, and help ensure that the smaller companies could still write policies in Michigan, which requires all reasonable charges incurred for reasonably necessary products, services, and accommodations for an injured person’s care, recovery or rehabilitation be covered for the accident victims lifetime. That was and is all the MCCA does, so it is unclear as to how they only reimburse a very small percentage, when they reimburse ALL auto claims that exceed $530,000.
The third statement that continues to show the lack of knowledge from the people behind this advertisement is the one line that reads, We are for everyone who legitimately need assistance from this fund! (not the lowlifes who take advantage). Once you look past the unnecessary use of slanderous rhetoric, this statement contradicts their text box on the right side of the page that says, Place a $500,000 cap on current and future claimants. The reality is that anyone who sustains a catastrophic injury (such as a traumatic brain injury or a spinal cord injury), $500,000 will not even come close to covering the appropriate levels of care and rehabilitation they will require throughout their lifetime.
It is my sincere hope that whoever is responsible for this advertisement truly takes the time to learn the facts of Michigan's Auto No-Fault Insurance and the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Associations. All Michigan residents are fortunate to live in a state that allows all accident victims the chance to have a good quality of life post injury. In other states, the sad reality is that if you get injured in an auto accident, financial ruin for you and your family occurs, followed up by the remainder of your life is spent in a state-run nursing home.
If the "Ask Detroit" radio show and the staff at 680AM WNZK really want to delve into this topic, the focus should be on the MCCA and their refusal to present the real financial data that is needed to truly understand the status of that fund. Or, they can focus on why the State of Michigan allows your credit score, occupation, level of education, and residential address to factor into to how much your pay in auto insurance premiums. Better yet, I urge the hosts of "Ask Detroit" to spend some time learning the truth about Michigan Auto No-Fault Insurance, and witness firsthand some of the therapies and rehabilitation that are quintessential to the recovery and well being of auto accident victims.
If the hosts of "Ask Detroit" or any other media member would like to learn more about Auto No-Fault, please do not hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. It is my goal to help everyone understand just how critical Michigan's Auto No-Fault System is to not only those who currently need it, but to anyone who might need it in the future.
In a split second an auto accident can change someone's life forever, it could be yours. What type of auto insurance coverage would you want?
[i] Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association: Financial Statements and Supplemental Schedules Statutory Basis of Accounting. June 30, 2014 and 2013. PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP