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Akron, Ohio – July 19, 2012 – Kelly Cochran, LMT, was presented the Performance Health Humanitarian Award at this year's Florida State Massage Therapy Association Annual Convention. Performance Health, manufacturer and marketer of Biofreeze®, Prossage® and Thera-Band® health and wellness products, honors an individual annually in the massage therapy industry for their efforts in improving the welfare of their clients and demonstrating selfless devotion to others.
Bob Poirier, Vice President of Commercial Operations for Performance Health, had the honor of presenting the award to Ms. Cochran. "Kelly's list of accomplishments is long and continues to grow on a daily basis," stated Mr. Poirier. "A graduate of the Florida School of Massage, she is a successful massage therapist and an advanced practitioner in post surgical/injury recovery and scar tissue therapy who practices at the Marriott Harbor Beach Resort and Spa, Florida. Kelly promotes the industry and the profession consistently and constantly, yet still finds time to organize food drives and medical trips. She traveled to Haiti after the 2010 earthquake with a group of massage therapists from the Florida School of Massage to provide massage therapy to post earthquake trauma/amputee victims at the Rose Marie Paul Center for Physical Therapy in Jakmel, Haiti. During this trip, she met a group of children orphaned by the earthquake.
"This experience caused Kelly, fellow massage therapists and local Haitians to actively reach out to other American relief organizations working in Haiti," continued Mr. Poirier, "Within six months, she organized a volunteer medical team from the Reach Haiti Organization in Croix du Boquett, Haiti and they established 100 temporary home, allowing the children to move out of the tents where they had been living. By rallying donations from massage therapist across the country via Facebook, she was successful in increasing the availability of food for these children and adults from one meal every other day to two meals seven days a week. In April 2011, Kelly led another volunteer group of massage therapists from the Educating Hands School of Massage to meet the children of Haiti. In November of the same year, Kelly was selected by her employer, The Marriott Harbor Beach Resort and Spa, to return to Haiti with the Harbor Beach yearly Hearts4Haiti Volunteer Team led by Harbor Beach Human Resources Director, Lisa Larison. Marriott Harbor Beach sponsors the non-profit organization Great Commission Alliance (GCA) in Mirebalais, Haiti. In the fall of 2014, a Marriott property will open in Port au Prince, Haiti allowing Kelly the opportunity to transfer to Haiti
and become a more permanent and consistent part of the volunteer efforts for GCA and these children's lives. Kelly has shown us that one
Upon receiving the award, Ms. Cochran said, "I read a story of an anthropologist who placed an abundant basket of fresh fruit at the end of a field filled with children. When he told the children to run, they all took each others hands and ran together, then sat together and enjoyed their treats. When he asked them why they had not run individually, resulting in one of them having all the fruits, the children said, 'UBUNTU, how can one of us be happy if all the other ones are sad?' This is the mindset of the Haitian culture that I experienced. I have two fathers. My heavenly father and my earthly father—an International Latin Chemical Engineer who did business in Haiti. Both my fathers raised me to believe we have global responsibility to help one another, support one another, love one another and never give up. Kenbe la! Never give up! Kenbe la! Never give up!"
For information on how you can help Haiti go to mailto:email@example.com@gcanet.org
In addition to honoring Ms. Cochran at the FSMTA convention, Performance Health will donate $1,000 to the Great Commission Alliance.
About the Great Commission Alliance
The Great Commission Alliance (GCA) is non-profit organization dedicated to the people and country of Haiti. GCA's work began in the year 2000, working with the Haitian diaspora in South Florida, and then spreading to Les Cayes, Haiti where for over eight years GCA worked alongside other charities to help establish orphanages, schools and economic enterprises for the people of Les Cayes. GCA is now focusing its efforts in helping to wrebuild and enhance the lives of Haitians in Mirebalais, Haiti, which is located 40 miles NNE of the capital, Port au Prince.
About Florida State Massage Therapy Association
The Florida State Massage Therapy Association (FSMTA), the oldest professional massage therapy association in the country, is the only association that works exclusively for massage therapists in Florida. Since its beginning, the FSMTA has been involved in the legislative process concerning the massage therapy profession. The FSMTA's mission "To unify the massage therapy profession while creating, representing and promoting standards of excellence in health care" validates the FSMTA's
promise to serve and protect the massage therapist in Florida. www.fsmta.org
About Performance Health
Featuring leading brands like Thera-Band®, Biofreeze® and Pedigenix® Foot Care System, Performance Health offers a broad portfolio of products for the therapy, rehabilitation, wellness, massage, podiatric and performance markets. In addition to market-leading products, Performance Health provides practice building support, evidence-based protocols, clinical and product education, turn-key dispensing and pain management solutions.