“There are many experiences in life that can influence the person we become.”
These are insightful words for one so young, but at age 17, Morghan reflects a wisdom born of maturity. “My experiences at Bay Cliff have taught me how to face challenges head on and given me the tools to know how to overcome them.” She knows a thing or two about challenges.
Morghan is the daughter of Shawn and Cassandra of Marquette, Michigan. “I was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy around the age of two, and that was also the time my family became familiar with Bay Cliff. I had my first summer at camp the next year.” She was referred to camp for physical therapy and occupational therapy following surgery for her legs. With the goal of improving and strengthening mobility, in that first summer, Morghan learned to walk with longer reciprocating steps and gained the confidence to walk short distances without any assistance.
Each summer thereafter saw continued progress for Morghan in her independence with walking and daily living skills. Additional surgeries would temporarily reverse the previous gains she had made, and she would have to start back at square one to regain strength, function, and confidence. Morghan always returned to camp with determination and a positive attitude to work hard to achieve goals she had set for herself. “Bay Cliff has been a part of my life for fifteen years. Throughout my summers at camp, I’ve accomplished many goals from tying my shoes and learning basic social skills when I was younger, to relearning how to walk after the various surgeries I have had. Besides increasing my independence, Bay Cliff has helped me in more ways than I am able to say.”
In addition to therapy, Morghan was involved in the Teen Program during her last four years at camp. From following the lead of others as a 3-year old, she became a leader among her peers as a young teen. “I loved being part of the Teen Program! Not only did I learn responsibility, I was able to be a mentor for younger campers and make great friendships and memories along the way that I will have with me forever.”
In the future, Morghan plans to attend Northern Michigan University with the goal of studying speech-language pathology. “In my heart, I know that choosing this as my career is because of the people that I have been able to meet while I was a camper. I was inspired by how they were able to help people better communicate with the world around them. Bay Cliff has helped shape me and continues to help me be the best person I can be. I know that what I have learned from Bay Cliff will help me with this new part of my life.”
“I am truly blessed to have been here. I can say without a doubt that Bay Cliff has greatly impacted my life.” Without a doubt, this young lady will greatly impact the lives of others.