(L to R: Wayne “Eli” Ehlebracht, Tom Botz, JP & Mike Jones with Kimmy & her sister, Lauren in front)
Minneapolis (August 29, 2012) — Ryan Companies US, Inc. has partnered with the Make-A-Wish® Minnesota to make a little girl’s dream come true. Kimmy, a 9-year-old with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), wished to have a wheelchair-accessible playhouse where she could play independently and have a place to call her own. The Ryan team transformed a 10 x 20 construction trailer into Kimmy’s Kastle and presented it to her at her home in Warroad, Minnesota.
Kimmy lives each day with the complications of SMA, a disease that weakens her muscles. Because of that, she needs help to do the daily things we all take for granted. Her wish was for a private getaway that would enable her to play without anyone’s help. When asked, Kimmy knew exactly what she wanted; a table and chairs where she and her sister, Lauren, can color, windows with curtains (pink, of course), an art station, chalkboard wall, sand and water table, sliding door with large holes for bean bag toss game, lots of storage for toys and books, and a room to dance and play. All of the features are designed and constructed to enable Kimmy to independently maneuver throughout the space.
Ryan donated time and materials to the project and drew upon volunteers from within the company, retired employees, family members of its employees, and various subcontractors to convert the former construction trailer into Kimmy’s dream space. “So many people contributed to this project, and I’ve been amazed at how generous they were with their time, talent, and materials,” said Jim “JP” Person, Director of Field Operation at Ryan who oversaw the project. “I’m convinced that those who volunteer walk away with as much of a benefit as those they are trying to help,” he added. Project leaders from Ryan were Wayne “Eli” Ehlebracht, Tom Botz, and Mike Jones. The playhouse was designed by Rehkamp Larson Architects.
Kimmy’s Kastle is just one of the many projects that the Make-A-Wish Minnesota coordinates each year for children with life-threatening medical conditions. “It was great to partner with Ryan Companies and Rehkamp Larson Architects to make Kimmy’s dream a reality,” said Jeffrey Chell, M.D., Make-A-Wish Board Chairman. “Seeing the smile on Kimmy’s face will be priceless.”
Click here to see Kimmy's wish come true in the Make-A-Wish video "To Have My Own Playhouse."
Click here to read the Make-A-Wish Minnesota's Wishmaker newsletter article "Ryan Companies makes accessible playhouse wish a reality."
Kimmy’s Kastle was made possible by;
The Wish Sponsor - Drs. Jeffrey and Isabel Chell
Ryan Companies US, Inc. - Wayne “Eli” Ehlebracht, Tom Botz, Jim “JP” Person, Marianne Person, Cally Person, Bobby Person, Jim Person Jr., Sarah Person, Frank Prebeck, Michael Pochucha, Mike Jones, Andy Ford, Wayne Ehlebracht Jr., Josh Groen, Dave Fasching
Rehkamp Larson Architects - Jean Rehkamp Larson, Amanda Kay
Window and doors donated by anonymous local supplier, Muska Electric, Horwitz-NSI, Central Roofing Company, Superal, Inc., Ingersoll Rand Security Technologies, Schwieters Companies, Inc., Acme Tool, Olympic Companies, Inc., Acoustic & Associates, The Valspar Foundation, White Bear Boat Works, Empirehouse Inc., Silk Flowers – Jen Groen (Ryan), Electronic aquarium – Tom Graber (Ryan), Trencher rental – Tom Botz (Ryan), Misc. materials – Wayne “Eli” Ehlebracht (Ryan)
About Ryan Companies US, Inc.
Ryan Companies US, Inc. is a 3rd generation, family-owned national developer, designer, capital investment consultant, builder and real estate manager specializing in fully integrated solutions for more than 70 years. Key market sectors include: retail, distribution, mission critical, public sector and health care; and product experience includes work on office, retail, mixed use, hospitality, multi-family housing, industrial, medical office buildings, senior housing, distribution center, public sector, and mission critical facilities. Ryan serves customers throughout the United States with offices in the NorthCentral, Midwest, Great Lakes, SouthEast, SouthCentral and SouthWest regions. Ryan was named the 2007 National Developer of the Year by the Commercial Real Estate Development Association (formally NAIOP). For more information, visit www.ryancompanies.com.
About the Make-A-Wish® Minnesota
The Make-A-Wish® grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. It is the largest wish-granting charity in the world, with 65 chapters in the United States and its territories. Founded in 1982, Make-A-Wish® Minnesota has granted more than 3,900 wishes to children across the state of Minnesota. Make-A-Wish Minnesota grants a wish for a Minnesota child every 27 hours. Visit Make-A-Wish Minnesota at www.mn.wish.org and discover how you can share the power of a wish®.