Amanda Chappell knows what it’s like to struggle with affording healthcare on top of everything else. She also knows that without support from her community, she would not be where she is today. Chappell learned from those experiences, then used those lessons to support her community the way they supported her.
Chappell grew up on a dairy farm in Columbia City, Indiana and attended Whitko High School. She graduated from the University of Evansville with a degree in sociology after deciding to switch her major from nursing. Now, she works at Brightpoint as the Covering Kids and Families (CKF) Program Manager.
“My high school guidance counselor is the reason I successfully got accepted into college while my mom was in the hospital my senior year of high school,” Chappell said. “My sociology professors were the reason I was able to quit nursing school two and a half years into college and still graduate with a sociology degree in under four years when I couldn’t afford another year of school.”
Chappell’s late mother was sick for the majority of her childhood. Being one of 10 children, Chappell saw the financial struggles her family went through to afford her mother’s medical bills. Her parents sold off family farmland and her father worked three or more jobs at a time. But Chappell noticed how others from the community helped them, both financially and medically.
“My parents worked hard for what we had, and I grew up knowing that I always wanted to help people in whatever career path I took,” Chappell said. “I love what I do because I get to advocate for social justice and directly impact the lives of others in my community through helping them access healthcare.”
Chappell could not be happier with the work she does. Brightpoint is a private, non-profit agency that promotes economic and community development by providing resources, helping people gain access to opportunities, and teaching them skills they need to become self-sufficient. Chappell provides services that allow consumers to become healthier, thus improving their quality of life.
“The value in what I do is in the tearful thank you that we received when a homeless, pregnant 18-year-old found out that she was approved for coverage and able to receive her prenatal care for her high-risk pregnancy, and was able to get support to finish high school,” Chappell said. “The value is in the life that was saved of a 59-year-old man who lost his job of two years and found out that his cancer had returned one month after being uninsured. He received life-saving treatment and is in remission,” she said.
It’s always been about giving back for Chappell.
“The value that I see in what I do is helping people have an improved quality of life,” Chappell said. “Just like others did for me and my family.”
Chappell has been working with CKF-IN for just over six years and wants to thank her late mom and her dad for teaching her how to fight for what is right, to care about others, and to never quit. Today, Chappell spends all of the time she can with her husband and 3-year-old son. She loves scrapbooking, the lake, and her community.
If there’s one thing that Chappell wants to bring awareness to, it’s that more than 94,000 people in Northeast Indiana are uninsured.
“The uninsured don’t have access to preventative healthcare, mental healthcare, or other necessary healthcare services,” Chappell said. “They could be your neighbors, your children, your parents, etc.”
If you are uninsured and need help finding coverage, go to www.mybrightpoint.org.