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Visit Muscogee Nation
August 19, 2020

MCN Caregiver goes above and beyond for elders

Social media post gains huge response for donation of walkers

WETUMKA, Oklahoma — Muscogee (Creek) citizen Timothy Yahola, who goes by his middle name Eric, saw a need for elderly Muscogee (Creek) citizens throughout the reservation.

Yahola is a caregiver advocate for the Native American Caregiver Support Program through Muscogee (Creek) Nation. He said he came across several citizens who were in need of walkers and wheelchairs.

“This past year, our program was able to purchase wheelchair and walkers for the citizens,” Yahola said. “Problem is we cannot fulfill all the needs for everyone.”

He said he was bringing supplies to one citizen when she requested a sitting walker because her own had a broken wheel.

“I asked to look at her walker and take it with me with hopes of being able to fix it,” Yahola said.

Fortunately, he found another wheel for her walker and was able to fix and return it to her.

“That was when the lightbulb inside my head turned on,” he said.

From there, Yahola said he made a post and plea on social media’s Facebook to anyone willing to donate old walkers to help out other people.

“People have responded to the post,” he said.

A lot of the donations that he has received needed parts or a good cleaning, when he was done with that he delivered to whoever needed a walker.

“We make sure to look it over and they are in good use before we give them to the people,” Yahola said.

Yahola said he knew that people were going to help when he made the post and had an understanding about tribal citizens.

“Us Natives, especially (Muscogee) Creeks, we don’t throw nothing away,” he said laughing. “People were ready to help and that is where holding onto stuff all these years have paid off.”

MCN Acting Secretary of Community and Human Services Shawn Partridge said she is overjoyed at what MCN employees do to help out their citizens.

“I saw his post and then I saw the response from everyone who wants to help shows me what employees, like Eric, do to go above and beyond to help out to people who are in need,” Partridge said. “His willingness to think ‘outside of the box,’ in providing services shows that he is a great person.”

Yahola said he is going to keep accepting donations for the walkers for as long as possible.

“People will keep getting older,” he said. “When that happens, they will need help getting around at times and that is why I want this to keep going.”

Yahola said he wants to help as many people as possible, not just in the areas where he works but all of MCN.

“Please get ahold of us if anyone is needing a walker,” he said.

Yahola can be reached by cell at: 918-698-3022 or call his office number at: 918-549-2459.