AFS Community Raises 11k in one week for Mother of Ann Arbor Trainer
Valued Clients, Staff, and Friends of AFS:
I often refer to AFS as a community. I think this word most embodies what we are. Yes, we’re a place people exercise, a place people reach their goals, and a place that people can truly change their lives. But the one element that transcends all of those things is the sense of community that exists. The strength of this community we are all a part of, has never been as real to me as it’s been these past few weeks with Chris and Debbie Early’s story.
When I first heard about what Chris and his family were going through, my natural inclination was to offer the assistance of the AFS community. When I asked, I wasn’t asking just on behalf of myself, or the staff, I was asking on behalf of all you. I truly feel if any one of you were in my position; to represent the community as a whole, you would have done the same thing. When someone in your community; your family, is struggling – you help, it’s just what you do.
When I offered the help of the AFS community, I didn’t doubt for a second we would accomplish the task at hand, and all of you didn’t disappoint. Within 24hrs of our email going out we had raised the additional $9000 we needed to cover Debbie’s (Chris’ mom) medical bills. I will admit though I was slightly surprised with the magnitude of the response. I thought it might take a week or so to raise the money, but I should have realized the strength of our community. All of you thought just as I thought; when someone you care about is struggling – you help, it’s just what you do, because it’s just right.
I am proud of so many of things that AFS has accomplished over the years, but this may be my proudest moment. This moment was more than practitioners helping clients, more than instructors teaching classes. In this moment we all united as a community to help one of our own. That transcends fitness, it is truly special.
If you’ve ever looked closely at the AFS logo, you notice it’s the Greek Delta, which in math and science signifies change. We like to consider our logo as beacon of positive change. That beacon has never been brighter than in the past few weeks!
I saw Debbie Early last week in Plymouth (you’ll all be happy to know she just finished a workout, so she’s doing quite well). All she could do is hug me and cry, she didn’t even have words to describe her gratitude, and she didn’t need them. She almost couldn’t let me go, and in that moment I realized she was hugging the entire community, not just me.
Thank you to all of you for making AFS a strong and vibrant community. Thank you to all of you who make AFS a beacon of hope. Thank you to all of you for helping us make change in people’s lives.