Jenimae got the best first birthday gift ever, thanks to generous donations – bilateral Baha implants!

We love hearing about true feelgood stories like this!


Kristin Arabally, 36, (left), wanted to help Jenimae Michener, 11 months, (right, with mom, Amber Michener). Chris Vigil, (center) showed support at the B&B Cafe. Photo by Virginia Grantier

A generous restaurant owner in Colorado, USA, donated 100% of his income of an entire weekend to a little girl he’d never met – just so she could afford getting Baha implants!

Little Jenimae Michener was born with Treachers Collins Syndrome, which causes facial deformities. She has a mild case, but lost 90% of her hearing. The only way to recover her hearing would be with Baha implants – but her parents, Amber and Joshua Michener, couldn’t afford it.

Word about the Micheners’ situation quickly got out in their community. Kristin Arabally, who had only recently met the family, visited several local restaurants and businesses asking if they would consider donating 10% of one day’s profits to help fund Jenimae’s hearing implants. Her requests were rejected, until she approached Chris Vigil at the B&B Café.

Vigil said he would give more than 10%. He would open the café the entire weekend and donate 100% of his total earnings! The benefit dinners were a success and Vigil and his crew raised over $8,000, all of which they donated to the Michener family.

“It was so much fun, it was really great meeting everybody,” Amber tells the Good News about the benefit. “Chris was awesome for doing this. He’s truly a wonderful guy.”

“Their child’s gonna have what she needs,” Vigil says. “I did what people should do.”

The Micheners will now be able to afford bilateral Baha sound processors for their daughter, so she’ll be able to hear speech and learn to talk. What better birthday gift for Jenimae who turns one on March 21!