Orland Park Teenager with Cerebral Palsy Receives Life-Changing Gift from Safe Step Walk-In Tub Co.
CHICAGO, June 25, 2014 – Naheda Jablonski is a widowed mother of two teenage girls, Sophia and Stephanie. Sophia has cerebral palsy and is confined to a wheelchair. Until recently, the only way Sophia could bathe was if her mother physically lifted her into a tub and bathed with her.
Ms. Jablonski is 4’11”, recently had back surgery and her daughter is as big as her, which makes bathing a complete physical challenge. Naheda is well known in the Orland Park community for her fundraising efforts for others’ causes. She keeps her daughters involved in Girl Scouts and dancing (even Sophia is in a dance group for disabled students).
Many in the community, as well as the village itself, have come to her assistance because of her past deeds. Her church remodeled the lower level of her home so a ramp could be installed. They also repainted the interior of the house. When her local bank heard she was facing foreclosure, they stepped up and refinanced her with a 40-year loan she could afford.
In looking for ways to ease her daughter’s pain and grant her independence, she reached out to the Safe Step Walk-In Tub Co. It’s important to note, she was interested in purchasing the tub and was not asking for help. It was determined that Ms. Jablonski was unable to afford the tub for her daughter. But, rather than simply moving on, the sales representative who met with Ms. Jablonski, Don Ball, asked his company to help.
And they did.
Safe Step, which routinely receives numerous letters for tub donations, recognized that Ms. Jablonski was making a difference in her church and community, but she needed assistance for her daughter with a disability. So the company decided to make a difference for the Orland Park teenager and her family. Through its award-winning national program of giving, Safe Step Cares, the Nashville-based company delivered and installed the tub that will change the family’s life.
At no cost to the family.
“We were moved by the Jablonski’s story and Safe Step is in the business of changing the lives of our neighbors and friends, every day” said Craig Dauffenbach, CEO and owner of Safe Step Walk-In Tub Co. of Minnesota, Inc., who chose the Jablonski family as the Safe Step Cares recipient. “We felt the family could really benefit from our tub and we are thrilled to help them with something that will change their lives.”
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Former Quadriplegic Disabled by Uninsured Drunk Driver Receives a ‘Miracle’ from Safe Step Walk-In Tub Co.
Tony Cato, Once a University of Nebraska – Lincoln Basketball Star, Becomes First Honoree of Safe Step Cares Program
OMAHA, Neb., March 28, 2013 – Tony Cato is getting used to miracles. In September, 2007 his doctors told the former University of Nebraska – Lincoln basketball star he’d never walk again. They ate their words just months later when Tony surprised friends by taking his first steps since being declared a quadriplegic following an accident involving an uninsured drunk driver.
Tony, who walks on his own but still suffers partial paralysis, recently received a surprise of his own, as representatives from Nashville-based Safe Step Walk-In Tub Co. arrived in Omaha to bring Tony its top-of-the-line walk-in tub free of charge as part of the Safe Step Cares program. Cato couldn’t escape tears as he walked slowly down his porch steps to see his new tub.
“This is a miracle,” said Cato. “I wasn’t sure I was ever going to be able to take a bath again, but now I can.”
Tony has undergone 12 surgeries since the wreck and his mother says his medical bills are in the millions. In a conversation with his friend Jennifer Galloway in January, Tony was asked if he could have one thing, what it would be. His answer: a tub. So she wrote several leading walk-in tub companies requesting consideration for a donation.
“I took a chance but didn’t know if it would turn into anything,” said Galloway. “But it was on my heart, so I wanted to give it my best shot for Tony.”
Only one company responded: Safe Step.
“We heard his story, how he had fought back, never quit, never complained and made time to speak to the dangers of drunk driving in between volunteering at the VA among other community endeavors, and we said, ‘this is our guy, let’s swoop in and show him Safe Step cares,” said Omaha native and Safe Step’s corporate marketing manager Danielle Revelette, who flew in to be a part of Tony’s special moment. “We are here to change his life,” added Revelette.
Safe Step says that Tony is the first recipient of Safe Step Cares but the company intends to keep giving back to the communities it serves on a regular basis.
“Safe Step’s business is about changing lives,” said Safe Step executive Stuart Hall, who also came to Omaha to meet Tony. “When I saw the look on his face as he walked out to see the tub, I knew that we had done the right thing. Safe Step is here because we care about Tony.”
Tony’s first words upon seeing the completed install: “Wow, this is unbelievable. All I can say is this makes me feel human again. Now get out of here so I can take a bath (his first on his own in more than five years).”
About Safe Step Walk-In Tub Co.
Safe Step Walk-In Tub Co. is one of the nation’s leading walk-in tub providers, known for quality, service and affordability. Safe Step Tubs have received the Ease-Of-Use Commendation by the Arthritis Foundation and are manufactured and built in America using American-made components. Their quality is backed with the best warranty in the business, including a lifetime warranty on the tub, the door seal and faucets. Servicing all of the US and parts of Canada, Safe Step Walk-In Tub is a family company, headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee.