While Oasis of Hope Center (OHC) opened on April 30th, 2007, the story actually began shortly after the turn of the current century. Barbara Grinwis, a physician assistant on faculty at Western Michigan University (Kalamazoo, MI) in the College of Health and Human Services, preparing new physician assistants for service, began to feel the Lord’s leading to leave academia and return to clinical medicine, but in a manner that more intentionally focused on the underserved.
The rest reads like a story out of the Bible: the successful orchestration of all the logistics necessary to start a free clinic; how the employment situation of Barb’s husband Dan was so dramatically altered that he was able to come alongside Barb in this new adventure on a full-time basis; how the two of them were able, against all worldly odds, to purchase a 100+ year old commercial building just outside of downtown Grand Rapids; how a community came together and took a chance on them and invested resources to turn that building into an Oasis of Hope for the community; how the vision given to one person has exploded into a reality supported through the years by hundreds of supporters and hundreds of volunteer health professionals and so many others; how this originally Founder run organization has blossomed into one led by a strong and committed Board of Directors comprised of Christian leaders dedicated to the mission of OHC; and how through the subsequent years, thousands of lives have been touched and have had hope restored through an improvement in their health and their overall well-being – and most importantly, left knowing that it was all done in the name of Jesus Christ.
Ask Dan and Barb for the details sometime, but be prepared to have your perceptions changed. Truly God is in this place and He proves it every day by His faithfulness.