From a young age, Jeffrey Wall of Ohio was taught to look for ways to help others.
At just 6 years old, his parents enrolled him in classes to learn Tang Soo Do, a Korean martial art. It was love at first kick! Over the years, he worked his way up to achieve a black belt in the sport, and by 15, he had decided to share his talents with people in nursing homes!
He started Golden Age Karate to help seniors stay strong, fit, and healthy. He calls his students “Super Nanas” and “Super Grandpas” and said the program brings him just as much joy as it brings them.
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They’ve formed such a close friendship that these super athletes often tell him they wish he could come every day!
“I felt like they don’t get that much love and attention. I want to make them feel like I’m their grandchild,” Jeffrey explained. “It makes me feel joyful and excited to see my seniors — and just love on them as well. And my seniors feel the same way. To see their faces light up is the best feeling in the world.”
When the novel coronavirus pandemic forced his beloved friends into quarantine, Jeffrey wasn’t about to let a little social distance get in the way of their workouts!
“Many of them were really sad,” he said. “Some of them need me to be there as a companion; it gets really lonely in the nursing homes.”
So he pivoted his classes to online only and started a YouTube channel so he could conduct remote lessons. He also beefed up his Instagram presence to keep in touch more often.
Of course, his students are eager to have him return in person. To keep their spirits up, Jeffrey spends his free time writing them cards and notes.
Now that Golden Age Karate is getting media attention, admirers and fans from around the world are joining him!
“Hundreds of love notes for my students, this is gonna be a busy spring break,” the teen wrote on Instagram. “I think that if I am able to give one to every resident in my students’ nursing homes I will share with other nursing homes as well. They are going to love this.”
Jeffrey hopes to spend his summer creating more content and leading some very small socially-distant lessons outside.
Once he graduates from high school, he plans to study business management and someday run his own company. One thing is for sure: He wants to continue working with seniors no matter what the future holds!
This young man is sharing his talents with people who often feel forgotten, and he has no plans to stop anytime soon! Not even COVID-19 can keep him from making a huge impact on the people and the world around him. Well done, Jeffrey!
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