Me Newsletter - Fall 2012


Published on

The Hope Institute for Children and Families' Fall 2012 Issue of Me Magazine

  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Me Newsletter - Fall 2012

  1. 1. Celebrating the lives of children with developmental disabilities Fall 2012 Heart of HopeContents Over the phone from her new home at Hope, Brionna said “I loveAngels of Hope............................... 2 you” to her mom. It was the first time Diane had heard languageWhat is $5 a Month? from her daughter.Learning......................................... 3Art is Therapeutic for Twin Sisters “I cried like a baby,” she says.Living............................................. 4 Brionna has a rare chromosomal disorder that causes seizures, anPapa Lives on in Adam’s Triumphs enlarged heart and intellectual disabilities. Six months ago, Diane wasTaking Care.................................... 5 running out of options for her daughter. Three different schools couldHope Helps Bring Jackson Back not help her; no day care would accept her. Diane had to quit her jobDiscovering Hope........................... 6Luciana Needs Few Supports at HILA and ran out of money. Then the eviction notice came.Hope’s Children Depend on You..... 7 With a broken heart, but determined to do the right thing for Brionna,Become an Angel of Hope she called Hope.Giving the Gift of Hope.................. 7Hope’s Generous Supporters “I knew one day I would have to place her in a residential program butGifts at Work.................................. 8 I didn’t think it would be now, at age nine,” Diane says.Local Company Comes to the Rescue Hope offered Brionna exactly what her mom wanted – a structured and consistent schedule, speech therapy, staff who understand her daughter, 24/7 care and an on-site school. Most comforting to Diane was that Brionna would live and go to school at Hope. Brionna is one of the first children to live in our new standalone home on campus. She experiences the feel of a neighborhood as she leaves her house and walks one block to school. We have just begun to explore re-creating this feel across our 26-acre campus by replacing aging dormitory-style residences with standalone homes like Brionna’s. Our dream is to build homes, sidewalks, streets and a park – the type of real-world environment into which Hope children will eventually step as adults. We must do everything possible to ensure they are ready for the world. With your continued financial support, we can do so. In the meantime, Brionna is busy living her life and building skills toward independence. She thrives on Hope’s structured and consistent routine. She is a Girl Scout, plays on the baseball team and attends church on Sundays, activities Diane once thought impossible.Diane knows Brionna is happy at Hope, “I couldn’t ask for more for Brionna,” Diane says. “As long as Hopeand it shows. Sitting on the front porch exists, I want all parents like me to know there is hope for children likeof her new home, Brionna shares a ours.”laugh with Clint Paul, Interim President/CEO. A publication of The Hope Institute for Children and Families
  2. 2. Angels of Hope What is $5 a Month? A gift from an Angel! With even the smallest monthly your Angels of Hope commitment commitment – say, $5 – you can give a reduces other Hope requests for your world of happiness and health to The support, the impact of your generosity Hope Institute’s special boys and girls. will be that much greater. When you become an Angel of Hope, Our Angels help The Hope Institute you will join our most dedicated friends budget effectively for the year ahead in helping loveable children who by ensuring state-of-the-art medical, struggle with significant developmental educational and residential services disabilities. for thousands of girls and boys coping with autism, cognitive impairments and The frequency and amount of your gifts physical disabilities. are completely up to you. And, because Your gifts will do more good than you could ever imagine! Become an Angel of Hope today. It is easy! Just fill out the reply card on page 7 and mail it with your first gift. Or visit to donate online. Thank you for being an Angel to Hope’s wonderful children! Mark is a delightful 13-year-old with a wonderful sense of humor. He is a country music fan and loves to sing along with the karaoke machine. To refer a child for services offered by The Hope Instituteme is a publication of The Hope Institute for Children and or to learn moreFamilies. For inquiries or comments, please contact us at (217) 585-5119, or about Hope services, PO Box 2817, Springfield, IL 62708-2817. please call 217-585-5437. Writer/Editor: Courtney Reed Photographer: Kimberly Smoot 2 Fall 2012
  3. 3. Learning Paint-Splotched Clothes Equal Living LifeRoger doesn’t know whether he saved his granddaughters’ lives or they savedhis. No matter. They are happy now, so he is happy.Two years ago Roger was alone. So were and Maisee’s paintings) as it is abouthis granddaughters. Hannah and Maisee experiencing new physical sensations.are six-year-old twins who have autism. At first, the girls were apprehensive butRoger took them in and quit his job to care also curious about paint. Wendy Johns, artfor them. He is as devoted as any parent. educator, helped them touch all kinds ofLike the uniqueness of snowflakes, these paint tools. Soon they began dipping theirtwins experience autism differently. fingers into the paint.Hannah loves motion. She likes to watch “Learning to tolerate something that mighther grandfather toss a ball. Maisee is feel uncomfortable such as paint or clay,fascinated by how things work. She wants opens the door to feeling and handlingto discover where air goes into the ball. other unfamiliar objects,” Wendy says.His girls’ inquisitiveness is a change Roger “Through art, for example, we are preparingsees since they came to Hope 10 months the girls to be able to work with their handsago. He believes Hope’s care is helping in a vocational setting.”Hannah and Maisee feel safe, confident For now, painting is simply fun for Hannahand open to new experiences. and Maisee. Roger is delighted when his“Everyone at Hope loves my girls,” Roger girls come home with paint on their clothes.says. “Hannah and Maisee may never be “The dirtier they get, the better I feel aboutable to tie a shoe, have a conversation their day,” Roger says. “It means they’veor add numbers. But if they have love participated in life.”wherever they are, that’smost important to theirgrandfather.”Love is abundant at Hope.So are high expectations ofthe girls’ abilities. To maketheir lives better tomorrow,Hope works diligently touncover every ounce ofcapability in a child today.Thanks to Gerald andSue Schillon’s generosity,Hope’s new ExceptionalArt Program does justthat. This program is notso much about producingartwork (though Roger’shome is covered in Hannah’s Hannah (left) and Maisee (right) learn to play with paint under the patient and loving guidance of Hope Art Educator Wendy Johns (center). me magazine 3
  4. 4. Living Adam’s Papa Would Be Proud of His Life at Hope Adrian threw out the child-rearing books when Adam was born three months premature. His developmental delays were immediate. But so was Adrian’s instinct to follow Adam’s lead. “I knew we would have unique After Papa’s death, their lives gradually challenges” she says. We just took deteriorated. Adam began sneaking things as they came.” out at night. Adrian slept in her clothes on the couch, ready to jump at any Adrian says “we” even though her noise. Eventually she bolted doors and father, who moved in after Adam’s locked windows. birth to help his grandson, died unexpectedly when Adam was 15. When Adam tried to jump out of the car as she drove, Adrian realized she “They were inseparable,” Adrian says. no longer could keep him safe. “When my dad started driving the school bus, he and Adam left and Hope is keeping Adam safe with the came home together every day.” kind of round-the-clock monitoring and care that is impossible for parents The peaceful rhythm of Adam’s life to provide. Adam relies on a consistent stopped when his “Papa” died. He schedule. When he has difficulty knew Papa would never leave him leaving school, staff have time to wait and could not understand where he until he is ready. had gone. Adam also was a teenager, a challenging time for anyone but Papa’s positive influence lives on in especially for Adam’s triumphs. Sweet-tempered young people and social, Adam is a leader among with disabilities. his friends. Adrian thought she would never be able to converse with her son “My greatest but when she calls nightly, Adam picks struggle was up the phone. getting him home after “He used to speak only one or two school,” she words at a time,” she says. “Now he says. “Every day tells me about his day and what he had he dropped to for dinner. The other day he recited the ground and Martin Luther King Jr.’s ‘I Have a refused to move. Dream’ speech.” I had to call As much as Adrian would like to paramedics or bring her son home, she believes her police to help.” decisions are not about what she wants but what Adam needs. “Adam loved helping his Papa,” Adrian says. “He needs Hope,” she says. “Adam was capable of doing a lot for himself and others, and my dad showed me that.”4 Fall 2012
  5. 5. Taking Care Jackson’s Mom is Finding the Boy She Thought She LostJackson was a happy, engaging baby. He walked early, played ball with his momand loved to swim.But then something changed. At 18 therapies and teaching strategies tomonths Jackson began to withdraw. help him focus so he could beginWords he knew evaporated. His gaze learning to care for himself andlooked disconnected. In front of his communicate with others.mother’s eyes, Jackson faded away. Today, Jackson’s helmet is off. He isAutism took Jackson. speaking words again, getting dressed on his own and brushing his teeth with“I broke down and cried, ‘Why my only a little help.child?’” Emily says. “I was in shock.” At Hope, Jackson is reconnecting withLike any toddler, Jackson began himself.throwing tantrums. But his weredifferent. He bit and scratched others, “Hope’s consistent expectations ofand banged his head. Emily searched Jackson are helping him gain a sensefor help from doctors and therapists but of control,” Emily says. Now she seesnothing worked. herself looking differently at her son when he comes home every otherBy age five, Jackson was putting himself weekend.and others at risk. His kindergartenclassroom called Emily so often to take “I’m realizing how much hehim home that she lost her job. She understands,” she says. “He rolls hisand Jackson spiraled downward while eyes when I sing, he laughs at me. I’mhis behaviors escalated. finding my son again.”“I had to nail our windows shut toprotect him from running into thestreet,” Emily says. “I couldn’t leave.I couldn’t work. I couldn’t be in thebathroom by myself for fear he wouldhurt himself.”The Hope Institute, Emily believes,saved them both.Jackson arrived at Hope wearing ahelmet because he hit or banged hishead more than 50 times a day. Hisaggression was unpredictable. Herequired 24/7 one-on-one care – afeat impossible for Emily or any otherparent to provide.Jackson’s Hope team coordinatedhis medical care with behavioral Emily is saving money for an iPad in hopes it might help Jackson communicate. “I feel like Jackson is a normal little boy trapped in his body,” she says. me magazine 5
  6. 6. Discovering Hope Luciana Moves Beyond Special Supports at HILA Luciana is a talkative and inquisitive second grader at Hope Institute Learning Academy. Just four years ago she spoke very few words. Luciana was born in Kazakhstan. Her for us to read to her.” They looked for parents adopted her from an orphanage an education program that understood at age one. She had serious vision their daughter’s special needs. Nothing problems and was suffering from lack of seemed to fit. stimulation during infancy. Then Suellen discovered Hope Institute “We expected delays and knew we Learning Academy. Known as HILA, the would need to catch her up,” says school’s mission is to educate boys and Suellen, Luciana’s mom. But despite girls of all abilities and learning styles. everything they did, early intervention “I knew in 10 minutes it was perfect and therapies, Luciana’s inability to for my daughter,” Suellen says. “The focus was getting in the way of learning. teachers and staff understood her “We could tell she was smart,” Suellen challenges and spoke to us in a spirit says. “But she was like a bumblebee, of willingness to work together to help in constant motion. We were dizzy her.” watching her.” Now Luciana requires very little of the An attention deficit disorder (ADD) speech and occupational therapies and diagnosis soon explained Luciana’s special education supports that she inability to focus. It also terrified her received in kindergarten and first grade. parents. In fact, compared to second grade standards, she is reading at grade “How were we going to educate her?” level and testing above in math. Her Suellen recalls. “She couldn’t color, vocabulary is flourishing. dress herself or sit still long enough Teachers and staff attuned to Luciana also are helping her develop coping skills by turning her sensitivity to touch into something positive. Luciana keeps a squishy toy in her desk that she can squeeze when she feels uncomfortable. Suellen has learned to bring a similar toy into situations outside of school that may cause Luciana anxiety. “Every single person at HILA is tuned in to what children like Luciana need to be successful,” Suellen says. “HILA is giving my daughter the tools, encouragement and space she needs to grow into the leader she is.” Luciana has moved from half days in special education classes to full days in her mainstream class. (Photo courtesy of HILA.)6 Fall 2012
  7. 7. Hope’s Children Depend on You Suppor t Our Special Boys and Girls by Making a Gift TodayThank you for inviting me to become an Angel of Hope by offering The Hope Institute my committed financial support.K I accept your invitation and will do my best to give a gift of $_________ K Monthly K Every other month K QuarterlyK I prefer to charge my gift to The Hope Institute and have filled out the credit card information below.K I prefer not to make a commitment, but offer my support today with a gift of K $25 K $15 K $_________.K Please charge $_________________ to my credit card on a one-time basis. I have filled out the credit card information below.Credit Card Information:K Please charge my K Visa K MasterCard K American ExpressAccount Number: ––– Expiration Date: ______/______Printed name as it appears on your card: _______________________________________________________________________Signature: ___________________________________________________Cell phone/telephone: ___________________________Email: __________________________________________________________________________________________________Would you like to become an Ambassador of Hope?K Please contact me about becoming an Ambassador of Hope.Create a Legacy of Hope for the Children of The Hope InstituteK I have remembered The Hope Institute in my will. Thank you for your generous tax-deductible gift. Please make checks payable to The Hope Institute. PO Box 2817 • Springfield, IL 62708-2817 Please remove reply at perforation, fold and enclose it with your gift in the envelope provided. Thank you! Giving the Gift of Hope Hope’s Generous Supporters We wish to thank our corporate sponsors that have provided major support to Hope’s fundraising efforts over the past year. 5Flavors Catering FWAI Architects Pease’s Candy Allied Waste Services Grady Realtors Preferred Network Access   Ameren Hanson Professional Services Presentations Direct Anderson Legislative Consulting Heartland Credit Union R.W. Troxell & Company Apricot Lane Boutique Hinshaw & Culbertson Renken Denistry Bank of Springfield Illinois Automobile Dealers Association Roland Machinery Company Bob Ridings/Jim Xamis Dealerships Illinois National Bank Scott & Scott Boka Restaurant Group Integrated Networking Solutions Shefsky & Froelich Brandt Consolidated King Technology Sikich Brown, Hay & Stehpens Kinzie Chophouse Sloan Implement Company Bunn-O-Matic Corporation Levi, Ray & Shoup Southern Wine & Spirits of Illinois Butler Funeral Homes MJ Kellner Food Service Spartan Sports Park Chicago Blackhawks Charities Marine Bank Telephone and Data Systems Cinzano Wines Mercy Home for Boys & Girls Tobin Jewelers Clark Baird Smith Michael von Behren Builder Town and Country Bank Corporation Service Company O’Brien’s Restaurant Walmart Davis Law Offices Pearson Corporation Zara’s Collision Center Please visit or call 217-585-5119 to learn more about Hope’s special events. me magazine 7
  8. 8. NON PROFIT The US POSTAGEHfor Children and Families OPE INSTITUTE PAID SOUTH SUBURBAN PERMIT NO 799 15 East Hazel Dell Lane PO Box 2817 Springfield, IL 62708-2817 Gifts At Work Local Company Comes to Hope’s Rescue The heat index was 100+ degrees when Hope’s walk-in freezer stopped working. Inside were over 200 boxes of frozen meats and other major food items that would thaw and spoil within hours. Hope needed a helping hand … fast. trailer pulled up alongside Hope’s kitchen and stayed there for five days. MJ Kellner insisted on Fran Berry, who for 16 years has overseen absorbing the cost. the dietary needs of 185 Hope children on campus and in their homes, called MJ To Fran, Mike’s efforts to help Hope were heroic. Kellner, a local Hope food distributor. “I don’t know what we would have done without “I told her not to worry, that I would do him,” Fran says. “He was there when we needed whatever I could to get a freezer to Hope,” him.” says Mike Dobson, MJ Kellner’s director of To Mike, he simply lived out the family-owned operations. And he did. company’s commitment to the community. Within one hour, “MJ Kellner will always extend a helping hand with help from to organizations that help people in our partner Whalen community,” Mike says. “Hope can count on us.” Transportation, a refrigerated semi When a broken freezer threatened Hope’s food inventory for 185 children, MJ Kellner delivered a refrigerated trailer within one hour. (Photo courtesy of MJ Kellner.)