Each November, The MENTOR Network–of which NeuroRestorative is a partner–honors employees and independent contractors from across the organization whose compassion, energy and skill create ripples of hope in the lives of those we serve. Ripple of Hope Awardwinners are nominated by their colleagues and chosen by The Network. This year, NeuroRestorative was honored to have one of our own chosen to accept the award–Bob Alves, Residential Team Lead for NeuroRestorative Massachusetts. In addition to the Ripple of Hope Award, Bob was award with the Northeast region’s 2013 Q4 NeuroRestorative Heroes award!
Bob started his career working with teenagers with challenging behaviors, including membership in some of the country’s toughest gangs. He attributes his de-escalation skills and ability to decrease anxiety and stave off emotional outbursts to this past work experience. Respect, trust—along with common sense and a sense of humor—are hallmarks of his approach to service.
“A lot of our participants have difficulty with communication, but Bob has a way of getting to know people and gaining their trust in a short amount of time,” says Linda Griffith, Program Manager at NeuroRestorative and Bob’s nominator.
The skill to connect quickly is a significant one for a program like Raynham’s, where the average participant stay is three months. As a Residential Team Lead at the Rayham NeuroRehab program, Bob has gained the trust and respect of staff and program participants alike for his ability to connect with individuals with acquired brain and spinal cord injuries and prepare them for the journey home.
Bob is often asked to deal with the toughest cases and to model approaches and techniques for other staff. Bob’s genuine interest in the well-being of individuals is evident in everything he does. A participant’s down time with Bob consists of working on speech and other goals, or going out in the community for a ride, a bite to eat or maybe a concert.
“Bob is able to develop such a great therapeutic rapport with all the participants,” says Linda. “He carefully considers how to maximize community integration and involvement for participants with significant behavioral, communication and mobility challenges. His attitude is always ‘Let’s give it a try.’ Family members often write to sing Bob’s praises, thanking him for helping a loved one regain his or her life.”
Bob’s goal is to enhance the lives of the individuals he serves, and to encourage his coworkers to do the same. His high level of energy motivates staff and participants alike.
“My mission is to give people a second chance at life,” says Bob.
View a video of Bob accepting his award from Bill Duffy, COO for NeuroRestorative.