We had the good fortune of connecting with Brynne Dunning and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Brynne, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
For me, the thought of starting my own business seemed overwhelming and daunting in the beginning. Like many small business owners, I was afraid of taking this huge leap of faith. For years I had worked in pediatric therapy settings where I saw cracks in the system but had no way of changing or impacting these systems in a significant way. I was frustrated with the status quo in the therapy world and the idea of letting insurance companies tell me how best to do my job. But ultimately, my tipping point was seeing these amazing children and their families get less than what they deserved. And so the idea behind Made to Play Pediatric Therapy was born here. I was finally ready to take the jump into small business ownership and to be a part of something completely different in order to help every family and child gain the necessary tools to live out their best life. I wanted therapy to truly be fun and functional again for these kids, while also making the logistical side of therapy less of a headache for families. Working inside family’s homes as a private Occupational Therapist has opened up many doors (literally & figuratively) and I am looking forward to Made to Play Pediatric Therapy’s future.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Made to Play Pediatric Therapy specializes in providing Occupational Therapy (OT) services to children of all ages and all abilities in the greater Denver area. OT is a great tool to help children that have fallen behind in development to catch up to their peers and ultimately live out their best lives. I use a play-based developmental approach that focuses on helping children acquire and retain skills leading to improved function. Whether the child struggles with sensory processing, fine motor skills, motor coordination, handwriting, or has a specific diagnosis that makes all of these areas of life challenging, my job is to make working on all of these skills more fun. At Made to Play, I tailor each service to best meet the individual needs of the child and family as a unit. Therapy at Made to Play also focuses on the strengths of each child to help support a strong foundation for development and promote future growth. Here at Made to Play, I believe that children are most successful when they are having fun!

Over the past few years, the therapy world has become very copy and paste. “Your child has this diagnosis, so he/she gets this many therapy sessions, and these are the approved techniques used to treat this diagnosis.” This was one of the main things I wanted to do differently with Made to Play. My philosophy as an Occupational Therapist is that the child, as an individual, comes first – not their diagnosis. Play is the lens I use for facilitating growth, skill development, and confidence for children of all ages. Incorporating the child’s unique interests and preferences into therapy has been a refreshing change and has led to better outcomes for my families. This type of play-based therapy is what excites me and motivates me. And let’s be honest, this way is more fun for everyone involved. I want every child and family that chooses Made to Play Pediatric Therapy to feel like their input is heard and valued when it comes to therapy outcomes. My role as the therapist is to empower and equip each family with tools and strategies that will positively impact their child’s daily life. And ultimately, I want the families that I work with to feel like they are playing the biggest role in their child’s success story.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Denver, and Colorado in general, is full of adventure that suites just about anyone’s taste. If not for COVID-19, these would be my recommendations for a week long visit with friends: First I would recommend snagging a couple of bikes and checking out some of Fort Collins breweries. You really can’t go wrong with any of them. Back in Denver, I would say do dinner at Root Down before grabbing cocktails at Death & Co. Late night pizza is always a must so definitely stop for a slice at either Cart Driver Pizza or Fat Sully’s. If the Rockies have a home game, then I would for sure be taking friends to the ballpark. It’s one of my favorite activities in Denver on a cool summer night. Summer and fall are also great for hiking, but not before brunch at Lucile’s Creole Café (say yes to the biscuits yall!). My favorite hikes to date have been Shrine Ridge in Vail and Mayflower Gulch near Copper Mountain. Camping is always my top recommendation during the summer. I love taking friends to camp at either Gross Reservoir or anywhere along Independence Pass near Twin Lakes. Campfires, s’mores, and a good bottle of wine wins every time with friends from out of town.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
So many wonderful people have poured into me and therefore Made to Play. All the glory goes to God first though. I am thankful for His provision, wisdom, and blessing throughout every step in this journey. My incredible rock of a husband deserves so much credit in this endeavor too. When I doubted myself, he encouraged me in just the right ways. When I was stuck, he knew just how to spark new inspiration in me. Without his full support, I truly don’t know that Made to Play would have ever been started. I have also been blessed beyond measure with an amazing family and community of friends. They have walked with me through all the highs and all the lows of small business ownership, and continue to support me in the kindest of ways when I need it most.

Website: https://www.madetoplaypediatrics.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/madetoplaypediatrics/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/madetoplaypediatrictherapy

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