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Presbyterian Manor employee cares for those in need, young and old

Michelle Swyers serves her community in multiple ways, both at work and at home.

She helps care for residents at Rolla Presbyterian Manor as an occupational therapy assistant for Aegis Therapies®, a position she has held for 14 years.

Last year, she also joined the Presbyterian Manor staff as a certified medical assistant.

“I want to educate myself in as many areas of treatment as I can in order to improve the residents’ overall quality of life and return them to their highest level of function,” she said.

At Presbyterian Manor, Michelle finds satisfaction in meeting both the emotional and physical needs of residents.

“I feel like every day at work is a special moment,” she says, although Michelle particularly enjoyed helping with a successful resident picnic on a beautiful day earlier this year. “It made my day to see them so happy and enjoying the outside. It truly is an honor and privilege to get to work with our residents in their home.”

Her work at Presbyterian Manor is a good fit for Michelle, who says she has always gotten along well with people older than she.

She shifts gears at home, where she and her husband, Thomas, serve as foster parents.

“I have always wanted to help out children who are in need or abused,” she said. “My husband and I have raised our four children — the youngest just graduated from high school — and it seemed like the perfect time to start fostering.”

They became a licensed foster care home in March and have parented eight children since, four of whom were still living with the Swyers family as of July.

“We are happy to adopt at some point and would like to have a little one,” she said.

Originally from the St. Louis area, Michelle moved with her family from Barnhart to Steeleville, Mo., when she was 12. She volunteers at her church teaching Sunday school and for the girls’ ministry on Wednesday nights. Michelle also enjoys crocheting, playing with her kids, family dinners, bike riding, long walks, and vacationing with her family.

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