With your help we are going to serve even more children and families.
You, our generous contributors, enabled us to deliver a great summer camp experience for children with developmental, intellectual, and behavioral challenges. Our professional staff and curriculum helped these children achieve 82% of the developmental and behavioral goals their parents selected for the summer. This is a huge positive impact because regression of goals during the summer is the norm for this community, making the transition back to school even more challenging.
Now that school is back in session, these families still need the expert behavioral support we provide when school is out for holidays, teacher workdays, and winter break. We need your help to continue giving the same loving, nurturing, educational, and fun experience with our new Day Camps held during the school year when school is not in session.
This is from a parent about the impact you are making:
"This program has been such a blessing to us! Having a special needs child brings us joy in so many ways we never would have thought possible, yet also brings challenges. The Joyful Friends Program has provided a wonderful environment for our son who has difficulty transitioning, especially to new environments. They have been so warm and welcoming to him, and while it has taken him some time, he now, with his limited words, asks for "school," his name for camp, and now happily and willingly goes in each morning and hugs me goodbye. I know those parents that can relate will understand how huge this is. From the bottoms of our hearts, "Thank you!!!"
PLUS: ANNOUNCING AN EXPANSION OF JOYFUL FRIENDS RESPITE SERVICES
Burnout for the parents and caregivers of these children is real and impacts the quality of life for the whole family. Raising a child with developmental or intellectual disabilities and behavioral challenges is emotionally and physically taxing. We are nearly doubling our onsite Respite Care capacity through your generosity and in response to a critical need in our community. So far this year we have served over 100 children during our Respite Fun Days and Parents Night Out monthly events.
This is how you are changing families' lives through your generous support.
"It (Respite Fun Day) allows my husband and I to relax and reconnect. Sometimes we feel like we have lost our marriage and part of our lives due to our son's disability. We can see friends we haven't seen in years without worrying about their reaction to our son's behavior, which has cost us friendships in the past. And we can even get a nap in! The best part, though, is how eager (and in a good mind space) we are to see our beautiful son when we pick him up and listen to him tell us how much fun he had and all the fun and interesting things he did during Respite Day."