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Monday, November 9, 2020

Overcoming Barriers Inc - Meet Kaja Thornton-Hunter


Our travels have taken us to so many incredible places and we've had the opportunity to meet some awesome people.  It seems a little crazy to look back to when all of this started with a GoPro Camera and this very free blog program, but when you stick to what you believe in and let those beliefs guide you, at least we've found, the stories that need to be told come to find you.  Well, that happened today while we were out filming for the Muskegon Channel.

Our amazing guest chef LaKisha Harris invited a friend along for a segment to add a little creole zip to a dish, Kaja Thornton-Hunter who's line of seasonings is catching on and quite often featured in L'Soul Filled recipes, and while we were in between a couple of takes and something was cooking, I asked Kaja if she worked elsewhere to go along with the start up and this is where our story begins today.

At 18 Kaja started he working life in a group home.  Working with special needs people who may have a mental or developmental disability and learned at a very young age just what a rewarding and valuable path she was heading down.  After all, she was heading in to the family business so it wasn't a completely new experience, but like any upstart there are ropes to be learned and the finesse of the day to day to warp your arms around.  Off to college she went where she also learned a little about what you'll see coming up on The Muskegon Channel.  

Overcoming Barriers Inc On FB

Spending some of her time working for HGA Support Services and Health West after school, when the opportunity came for her to take over the family business, she was ready.  Today, Kaja is the Founder and CEO of Overcoming Barriers Inc. in Muskegon Heights.  It's a non profit organization that helps those with disabilities find happiness in their home, their personal relationships, and be contributing members of the community.  They have 5 residential homes for adult foster care where they can help with some things as much as possible while encouraging as much independence as possible.  They have an independent living program which is tailor fit to every individual to access vocational, educational and recreational opportunities and they also have a skill building program where the match up mentors with those they serve to help share knowledge and a little understanding which not only helps with soft skills, it enriches the lives of both the mentor and mentee as we all work toward more ways of "together".  

As the smells of the recipes coming together swirled in the air, and we had another quick few minutes to visit, I figured it best everyone gets to know this incredible woman and hear more about her passion, those she and her staff serve and see first hand that there truly are miracles in action right here, and right now in Muskegon Heights and all of our surrounding communities.  Take a few minutes and learn about Overcoming Barriers with Kaja Thornton-Hunter.   

Amazing how life leads you where you need to be next.  We are always just amazed by the kind of work Kaja and her staff at Overcoming Barriers Inc does.  Helping those who are looking for no more than what we all have is truly the highest form of work that can be done and as we spoke in the video, the rewards are beyond measure.  Lucky for us, we've found yet another amazing organization to brag up here in town.  We've got another incredible cause to help champion and we've been given the ability yet again to show you the beauty of humanity when it comes to what's really important and that's our ability to show love, compassion and care.  Tune in tomorrow on the Muskegon Channel for the will NOT be sorry there either.  :)  Our many thanks to Kaja for spending a few more minutes with us today to talk about her passion.  To learn more, click below.

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