RYE BROOK, NY - Im a man with many hats, Michael Goldstein said to me in his cozy office on Bowman Avenue in Rye Brook. Being an attorney is just part of what I do.
Goldstein isn't your average everyday attorney, and although he's been a lawyer in Rye Brook for over thirty years, he didn't start out that way. "Originally I got my degree in social work," Goldstein said, "It wasn't until a little later on that I became a lawyer".
Goldstein describes himself as a real "hands on" person, and it shows in his work. His practice concentrates in adoption and family law and Goldstein has been recognized as one of the leading adoption attorneys in the nation.
An adoptive father of three, he has been involved in over 2,500 adoptions and is always searching for new ways to help kids both within the local community and beyond.
However, one of Goldsteins current projects was less initiative and more improvisation.
I had collected all of these shoes for people in Haiti, Goldstein explained, but unfortunately when the hurricane hit there was no way for us to ship the shoes. So, I had to find a place for all these shoes, and thats how I came in contact with AFYA and their crutch drive.
I guess Im the kind of person who believes in fate, Goldstein chuckled.
AFYA Foundation, based in Yonkers, is a place that collects a variety of items and ships them to Africa. They are currently working collaboratively with Crutches 4 Kids and Operation Rise to gather and ship thousands of crutches to the disabled in Sierra Leone. According to AFYA, Sierra Leone is home to 20% of the worlds amputees as well as tens of thousands of Polio victims.
(In Sierra Leone) if someone breaks a bone, its not going to get fixed, Goldstein said, Instead they just wait until it heals or amputate it.
After hearing about the crutch drive, Goldstein quickly phoned up Ken GiaQuinto of Rye Beach Pharmacy about gathering donations. It wasnt long before GiaQuinto had accumulated a wide variety of crutches, wheelchairs, canes and walkers from both patrons and the pharmacys own inventory.
Goldstein also received generous donations from Open Door Family Medical Center in Port Chester as well as members of the Rye YMCA.
We need a hundred Michael Goldsteins, Danielle Butin of AFYA said of the Rye Brook Attorney. Goldstein has amassed an eclectic mixture of walking aids at his office, and plans on sending his second shipment of crutches to Africa at the end of the month.
Do you or someone you know have crutches, wheelchairs, walkers, or canes lying around your house? If so, feel free to contact Michael Goldstein at (914) 939-1111 or firstname.lastname@example.org . If local, Michael can arrange a pick up or you can drop them off at 62 Bowman Ave. in Rye Brook any time day or night.
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