SAILing into Independence
June 2021
An informative newsletter with SAIL news and resources for an accessible Upper Peninsula disability community.
Individual Success Story
Heather's story is of courage and independence. As a Sault tribe member, Heather was looking for housing and wanted to live on her own again. She had been living with her mother at the time but with the support of her brother, Heather found housing! SAIL was able to then support her in her new home, connect her to services in her community for cooking, support the process of getting a phone and applied for a home heating credit. Once settled in, Heather requested some support in learning the transportation system in her area and SAIL could help! Heather expressed interest in getting back to work and SAIL connected her with Michigan Rehabilitation Services in which she received a benefits analysis service. This helped her to make an informed decision about what work would look like for her. With the support of her family and SAIL, she has gained confidence in her own skills and being independent. Heather now has a place of her own and is starting to look at her future in her community!

Click on the image below to watch a video about Heather's story!
Program Highlight
U.P. Vets SERVED program is a health and wellness program around the beautiful U.P. to foster camaraderie in a welcoming and engaging environment for veterans, service members and military families. All wellness events are at no cost to participants due to the generous donations of the SAIL One in Five Annual Appeal. Events are hosted regularly throughout the various U.P. communities.


Annual Stars and Stripes Campout July 23 - 25th, 2021 at the AmVets Post 122 in West Ishpeming, MI.

If you and/or your family is interested in attending, please contact us at 906-228-5744 or email [email protected] today!
Help us help others!
Donate to One in Five Annual Appeal so we can purchase an Action Track Chair!
Proceeds of the Battle of the Boards tournament will be designated to the purchase of an Action Track Chair!
SAIL Employee Spotlight
Fiona started at SAIL in 2019 as a Native American Services Advocate to assist with providing independent living services to tribal communities throughout the Upper Peninsula. Over the past year, she has been working with adults and transition age youth in our employment services program. On a daily basis, she supports individuals with work readiness skills, career exploration, resource navigation, peer mentoring, workplace soft skills and assists them in community work based learning environments. SAIL and the state agency, Michigan Rehabilitation Services or MRS work in partnership to support those individuals in gaining work skills, finding and maintaining employment. When asked about her role at SAIL, Fiona stated, "I love working with our consumers to build skills that they can use in the workplace. These skills help them to feel more confident in themselves for when they are ready to enter the workforce. They are capable of accomplishing anything." Fiona can be reached by calling 906-936-0923 or by email at [email protected].

Happy Birthday this month, Fiona!
One in Five Donor Spotlight
Hometown Battles
Thank you to Hometown Battles for the generous donation of $3,801 towards our U.P. Vets SERVED program! Unfortunately, Hometown Battles was a volunteer run organization and 2020 was difficult to continue due to the pandemic, therefore, they have dissolved. Upon dissolution, a local U.P. veteran recommended SAIL as a recipient of a portion of those dollars.

Thank you to all past donors to the Hometown Battles program and we appreciate the ability to continue to serve U.P. veterans with our health and wellness program.

Do you love to play cornhole??

Get a team together and sign up for the SAIL Battle of the Boards Cornhole Tournament coming August 21st in Marquette!

Teams of 2 people.
Are you a "board" member of any non-profit? We invite you to grab a fellow member and really compete in the "Battle of the Boards"!

If you don't want to play, become a sponsor of a team!

Visit to learn more!
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has announced a new hotline to improve access to COVID-19 vaccines for people with disabilities. The Disability Information and Access Line (DIAL) connects callers to information about how to access the COVID-19 vaccine and related supports. DIAL was created through a partnership between the Administration for Community Living and the CDC.

Click on the image below to learn more!
SAIL Employee Updates
Congratulations to Kristin Williams on expanding her position to include Community Outreach Coordinator!
Congratulations to Tanya Johnson on becoming our new Program Manager!
Living Well in the Community Workshop at the Forsyth Senior Center
by Julie Shaw

In the month of May, SAIL staff offered seniors at the Forsyth Senior Center in Gwinn a workshop series, Living Well in the Community, a curriculum by University of Montana Rural Institute. Some topics included Goal Setting, Building Support and Physical Activity. In the first meeting, the participants wrote a goal that they would like to work on. One woman was skeptical at the first meeting. She felt she had accomplished her bucket list as she had always travelled with her husband and once he passed away and macular degeneration set in, she thought her travelling days were over. By the end of the last workshop, she had booked her plane tickets to Montana. She was pleased that she had set and met her goal! Another woman's goal was to fix her bicycle that she used to enjoy so much. Her goal was broken down into smaller steps. First, she brought her bike into the bike shop in Marquette. Once her bike was repaired, she picked it up, brought it home and she braved riding it again. Riding brought back beautiful memories and new freedom from her physical ailments!
As the workshop continued through the month, the participants asked to do some physical activity and the SAIL staff brought adaptive bikes from the SAIL SPAR program to try for the last session!! One woman's fearless commitment to achieve her goal of bike riding inspired all the ladies in the workshop to want to try giving adaptive biking a try.  Some participants were apprehensive to try at first, but by the end of that session, they had all tried riding and many who feared the recumbent bike ended up loving it! Two women stated that it made them feel young again and their giddy laughter was contagious. Check out the pictures!

Before this workshop, the women were isolated due to the pandemic but this opportunity brought them together and they now are friends! One woman stated, "Thank you so much for offering this workshop. I have been so isolated during the pandemic, and this helped me come back to life. I have made a great new group of friends, and we will get through this together.”
Click below to learn more about our Veterans and SPAR program!
SAIL is a member of two statewide networks

Disability Network of Michigan (DNM)
Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC)

Click the buttons to learn more!