Four years ago, Tashmica Torok founded the Firecracker Foundation from her home in South Lansing. In early June, she moved the organization into a 2,000-square foot space in Holt.
"Originally, my goal was to help six kids," says Torok. "I had no idea this is what it would become."
Torok started the Firecracker Foundation to provide child survivors of sexual trauma and their families with high quality, consistent holistic healing services. Those service have evolved to include individual mental health therapy, trauma sensitive yoga therapy, and caretaker support groups.
The foundation's new location is the organization's fourth, following a path that led from Torok's home in South Lansing to The NEO Center in North Lansing to REO Town to Suite 9 in the office plaza at 2450 Delphi Commerce Drive.
"We were looking for a place that would accommodate not just administrative work, but our program work that includes yoga and therapy," says Torok. "This office has two spaces for yoga, two therapy rooms, and some group therapy rooms as well."
Before moving, Torok gave the space a makeover, including fresh paint, new carpeting and hardwood flooring, and putting up walls to section off service areas. The larger footprint triples the foundation's previous office in REO Town. The expansion enables Torok to offer on-site space to contracted, qualified therapists, and to run more yoga programming. Torok says the new facility also provides plenty of space for the foundation's pediatric medical advisory team to hold training and continuing education sessions.
The Firecracker Foundation employs two staff in addition to Torok, and benefits from the donated talented and services of about 75 active volunteers. Torok contracts with five therapists qualified to work with pediatric sexual trauma and five trauma-informed yoga instructors.
In the past year, the Foundation's client base has grown from 25 to 100 clients, with services provided to children and families.
"It makes me feel hopeful," says Torok of the organization's rapid growth. "I think what we've created is necessary and it's evolving to meet the needs of children and families in our community."
Source: Tashmica Torok, Executive Director, Firecracker Foundation
Writer: Ann Kammerer, News Editor
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