In News

Grand Rapids, Michigan, April 1, 2019 – Malea Nicolet has joined Emmanuel Hospice as a complementary services coordinator/massage therapist.

In her new role, Nicolet provides massage therapy to a diverse population of hospice patients for pain and symptom management, relaxation and improved quality of life. She also coordinates referrals for complementary services, such as essential oils and music therapy, both in-house and with community contractors.

Additionally, as part of the interdisciplinary group to coordinate a holistic plan of care meeting the needs of the patients, Nicolet assists in the education of other team members on complementary therapy resources.

“With the increase in popularity of complementary therapy offerings over the last year, it became evident we needed to expand our team to help manage our continued growth,” said Sara Lowe, executive director of Emmanuel Hospice. “With her experience as a massage therapist and rich background in the nonprofit sector, higher education and marketing, we are excited to welcome Malea.”

Nicolet brings seven years of experience in health and wellness care to the role as a licensed massage therapist, in addition to more than eight years in education and advising and more than 10 years in marketing and event management. Some of Nicolet’s previous experience includes serving as director of marketing and membership for C3Exchange – Inclusive Spiritual Community, associate director of admissions for Grand Rapids Community College and admissions counselor at Grand Valley State University.

Nicolet earned her therapeutic massage certificate through Baker College of Muskegon in December 2013. She has a bachelor’s in English/secondary education from GVSU.

Complementary services include music therapy, massage therapy, companionship and journaling sessions, as well as acupuncture and acupressure. Emmanuel also offers a pet visitors program, where trained volunteers with certified therapy dogs brighten patients’ spirits. Additionally, essential oils are an option for spiritual caregivers and social workers to use with patients to help manage anxiety, sadness and pain. These programs are available for patients receiving hospice care at a facility or in their home.

“I became drawn to hospice care during my massage education,” Nicolet said. “In my final term at Baker College, I was selected to be the student therapist for a man with end-stage brain cancer. We worked together for about six weeks, and it was truly transformational.

“I am honored to be a part of Emmanuel’s team and committed to creating an excellent experience for all our clients, families and caregivers.”

Massage therapy was the first complementary service Emmanuel offered since it began serving patients in 2013. Demand has grown steadily. Today, every three out of four patients access one or more complementary services offered through Emmanuel Hospice.

Since its founding in 2012, Emmanuel Hospice has grown to care for more than 95 families a day in the four-county area. Last year, the organization cared for more than 455 patients and an estimated 1,365 caregivers who supported them on their end-of-life journeys.

Interested in joining our growing team? Visit our Careers page to view available opportunities: https://emmanuelhospice.org/careers