The Hope Institute - Me Magazine Spring 2010


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The Spring 2010 Issue of The Hope Institute for Children and Families' Me Magazine.

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The Hope Institute - Me Magazine Spring 2010

  1. 1. Celebrating the lives of children with developmental disabilities Spring 2010 Dr. Nyre’s Heart of Hope Contents Every day we see children with developmental disabilities struggle Angel of Hope ............................... 2 with basic life tasks that you and I take for granted. These children Hope Is Counting On You inspire us to work hard to ensure we care for their every need. Learning........................................ 3 Travis Finds His Voice Hope’s work is not without its own struggles. Right now we are in the Living ............................................ 4 midst of an unseen effort to maintain adequate state funding for our Supporting Struggling Youth programs and services. Taking Care ................................... 5 The state of Illinois counts on Hope to provide children with Hope’s New Dental Clinic developmental disabilities the kind of specialized educational, Discovering Hope.......................... 6 Helping Adults with Autism residential and healthcare services that it cannot. The state funds Hope to do so. Hope’s Children Depend on You .... 7 Become an Angel of Hope But Illinois is in financial crisis. Human service organizations like Hope Giving the Gift of Hope ..............7-8 often are the first to be affected by public fund shortages. That’s why Hope’s Generous Supporters we always are on high alert for funding cuts. Hope has a long-term financial plan. We are saving and spending money wisely to ensure the continuation of our services even when the state is unable to do the same. Last summer, the state told Hope we would need to send home 41 of our most severely compromised children. Immediately we called their parents and vowed to fight to protect their children. Still, nothing we said could quiet their fears that their children would lose the gains they have made at Hope. Some said they likely would need to quit their jobs to care for their children. One mother asked through tears, “Are you telling me our tax dollars can go to rescue big companies … but a child with life-threatening health conditions will have services discontinued?” Sadly, I was left to say yes. This mother’s fear and anger captures why Hope refused to back down in the face of budget cuts. And why we constantly reevaluate how we spend money to ensure the support you give directly improves the lives of Hope children. Thank you for your continued support of the children of Hope. Your Hope weathered a state financial friendship has never been more important. crisis to protect the care of children like Kristyn. She has cerebral palsy and a seizure disorder requiring the kind of one-on-one support only Hope can provide. Dr. Joseph E. Nyre A publication of The Hope Institute for Children and Families, formerly known as The Hope School a
  2. 2. Angel of Hope Hope Is Counting On You Could you be an Angel? Absolutely! Angels of Hope are devoted In fact, The Hope Institute takes into friends who support Hope’s children with account the support of our generous regularly scheduled gifts. Angels when determining its annual budget. Angels help make sure The frequency and amount of your gifts thousands of children struggling with is completely up to you. And, because developmental disabilities have access your Angel of Hope commitment to Hope’s state-of-the-art educational, reduces other Hope requests for your residential and healthcare services. support, your donation helps us cut printing and mailing costs. Your gift will do more good than you could ever imagine! Hope counts on its Angels. 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 children! David and Dr. Joe Nyre, explore nature on Hope’s tree-lined campus. To refer a child for services offered by The Hope Institute me is a publication of The Hope Institute for Children and or to learn more Families. 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. Writing by Courtney Reed Photography by Kimberly Smoot and Suzanne Plunkett 2 Spring 2010
  3. 3. Learning Travis Finds His Voice In Hope’s Chicago Program Travis had not spoken since age two. People believed he never would. Children who fail to develop language by age five rarely ever speak. But something extraordinary happened appropriate social interaction. Hope’s to Travis at age 14. At The Hope behavior specialists are helping Travis Institute’s Chicago program for students learn to use words to connect with with autism – he found his voice. classmates and communicate his thoughts and needs, such as saying hello “I always thought he had the ability to instead of grabbing or poking. talk but something was holding him back,” says Gail, his mom, who lacked Surprisingly for a young man his access to experts who might have helped mother describes as shy, Travis’ favorite her break through Travis’ barrier. communication tool is the karaoke machine. Individuals who have difficulty Her son communicated by gesturing and speaking words often can sing them. pointing. He always smiled, so Gail never Travis’ words have brought him another knew how he really was feeling … except benefit – improved self-esteem. He does when it came to school. Travis fell far not give up like he once did. behind his classmates. Travis, now 17, brought his mom to tears “He struggled and gave up quickly,” Gail when, in a deep baritone voice, he sang a says. “He often became frustrated, left solo at a recent classroom program. his class and shut himself off completely, which made things worse.” “I couldn’t believe it. I was No one could reach Travis. Then his so happy,” Gail school directed Gail to one of Hope’s says. “Finally I Chicago educational programs specially was hearing the designed for children with developmental voice he had disabilities. kept hidden all these years.” “We had been told Travis couldn’t speak or read,” says Cathy Witczak, Travis’ teacher. “Then we began hearing him sing words to songs. He has worked hard to develop his words and is putting sentences together.” When Travis learned to Travis is talking now. speak, his family discovered a Unique to Hope’s program for children beautiful singing with autism, behavior specialists work voice hidden alongside teachers to encourage within. communication, independence and me magazine 3
  4. 4. Living Hope’s Residential Program Helps Stabilize Struggling Youth Youth at Hope live in one of five on-campus or 11 community homes. Continuity of care from Hope classrooms to homes help youth like Brigitte learn how to live successfully with the debilitating effects of their disabilities. Long ago Brigitte was a happy girl, an Coordinator. “One year later she is artist, musically and mathematically forming relationships with other girls in inclined. But that little girl is gone, swept her home.” away by autism and its havoc. A team of Hope teachers, therapists By age seven Brigitte was unable to and direct care staff created a plan communicate and became aggressive. for structure and behavioral support By age 14 the aggression turned into across all areas of Brigitte’s life, from violence that her mom Michelle was school to her campus home. This 24/7 powerless to stop. intensive care is helping her learn to communicate and calm herself. “When Brigitte was small I could hold and calm her when she became upset,” Brigitte’s mom lives one hour from Michelle says. “As a teenager it took five Hope, but that does not stop her from to 10 people to restrain her.” actively engaging in her daughter’s care and rehabilitation. Recently Michelle Michelle lived in fear for her own safety asked the Hope team to help her create and Brigitte’s. She slept with the house a plan for Brigitte when she visits home. keys in her pocket to keep “I know Hope is succeeding with Brigitte Brigitte from because they’re getting through the running off. The day with no behavior incidents and I day her daughter lived with 10 a day,” she says. “I want bent a full-size to figure out how to get her behavior door in rage, under control at home so she can be a Michelle knew part of our family again. they needed help. She turned “I know Brigitte needs to be at Hope to The Hope right now, but I want my daughter back,” Institute. she adds. “When Brigitte Michelle may not have to wait too arrived, she long. Brigitte is mastering self-care isolated herself,” and independent living tasks – all with says Joan greatly reduced aggressive episodes. Hammond, Hope Program “Hope is working,” she says. Brigitte is enjoying life once again. In Hope’s vocational workshop, Brigitte prepares Formica® sample boards that will be distributed to dealers across the country. 4 Spring 2010
  5. 5. Taking Care New Hope Dental Clinic Fills Healthcare Gap For Youth With Disabilities Kurtis would not open his mouth for anyone. Tooth brushing was a daily battle; filling a cavity or extracting a tooth impossible. Lynn, Kurtis’ mom, took desperate On Kurtis’ first visit, he sat on the dental measures to ensure his oral health. She chair’s edge. On the second, he sat in paid $700 to hire a nurse anesthetist for the chair and looked at instruments. On one procedure; her private insurance the fifth, he allowed Kim to clean and refused coverage. Kurtis did not need it, polish his teeth. they said. “I can hardly believe she got it done,” But Kurtis did need it. He has autism, Lynn says. “Kurtis proved me to be a liar does not speak and becomes aggressive and that’s fabulous.” when fearful. His dentist was unable Hope’s Dental Clinic has enabled treat Kurtis without anesthesia. Kurtis to experience success, often So when Lynn heard Kurtis had an a rare occurrence for children with appointment at Hope’s new Dental developmental disabilities. His resulting Prevention and Intervention Clinic at Noll confidence transferred to a social Medical Pavilion, she thought, “If they experience. Kurtis works at the YMCA, can, that’s great … but there’s no way it’s where he saw Dental Hygienist Kim. going to happen.” “He tapped on my shoulder and waved Oral healthcare is off-putting for children to me,” she says. “When I first met with developmental disabilities. It Kurtis he could barely make eye contact. invades personal space; instruments Now he’s connecting with me and make odd sounds; lights are bright; that’s why I love my work. I’ve made a smells are unfamiliar. These children difference in his life.” require multiple visits to become comfortable before they can receive care. “While most dentists would love to help children with special needs, operating a private practice that way is not possible,” says Kim Trapani, Hope’s Dental Hygienist. “Private insurance doesn’t cover multiple visits and Medicaid doesn’t come close to covering costs.” Hope’s Clinic, funded by donations, can support multiple visits. Any child with developmental disabilities may visit the Clinic, regardless of ability to pay. Kim Trapani, Hope’s Dental Hygienist, polishes Kurtis’ teeth – a feat his mother doubted would ever happen. me magazine 5
  6. 6. Discovering Hope The Autism Program Reaches Nationwide to Help Adults with Autism The Autism Program of Illinois, The Hope Institute, partnering with Autism Speaks, The New York Center for Autism and other leaders, launched Advancing Futures for Adults with Autism to plan for the futures of adults with autism. For more information, visit Jacob is only nine, but already his parents Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley opened are worried about his future … with good this first-ever conference live in Chicago reason. Few services exist for adults with and via teleconference to 16 other cities. autism. Hundreds of participants in major cities “In the blink of an eye he will be 18,” like Philadelphia and Dallas discussed says Jacob’s mom Becky. “Where will he topics such as housing and employment. live and work? How will connect to the Small-group moderators uploaded community?” ideas to autism experts in Chicago, who determined common themes and asked Within the next 10 years, an participants nationwide to prioritize them unprecedented number of youth with via simultaneous keypad voting. Final autism will enter adulthood. The race recommendations will be presented to the against time has begun to ensure adult U.S. Congress. autism services are available – and The Autism Program (TAP), operated by The Becky and her husband BJ drove three Hope Institute, is leading the pack. hours to attend because they wanted to know what is – and is not – happening to TAP brought together 2,000 parents, plan for the futures of children like Jacob. experts and individuals with autism in a national town hall meeting to create a “No plan exists to help people with national agenda for adults with autism. developmental disabilities secure affordable housing,” Becky says. “How will we keep these vulnerable adults from falling to the edge of society?” Becky and BJ know about society’s edge. Jacob’s family They have felt alone trying to help Jacob. is close-knit, but he shares an especially In crisis, Becky Googled “autism family tender help” and found TAP offering behavior , relationship therapy and social skills groups to help with his Jacob communicate and make friends. younger brother Having stabilized their family, Becky and Joshua, age BJ are turning to TAP’s national efforts. three. “For Jacob, I want what every parent wants – college, a career and independence,” Becky says. “TAP is helping thousands of parents make that happen.” 6 Spring 2010
  7. 7. Hope’s Children Depend on You Become an Angel of Hope Dear Joe, Thank you for inviting me to become an Angel of Hope by offering The Hope Institute my committed financial support. ❑ I accept your invitation and will do my best to give a gift of $_________ ❑ Monthly ❑ Every other month ❑ Quarterly ❑ I prefer to charge my gift to The Hope Institute and have filled out the credit card information below. ❑ I prefer not to make a commitment, but offer my support today with a gift of ❑ $25 ❑ $15 ❑ $_________. ❑ Please charge $_________________ to my credit card on a one-time basis. I have filled out the credit card information below. Credit Card Information: ❑ Please charge my ❑ Visa ❑ MasterCard ❑ American Express Account Number: …………–…………–…………–………… Expiration Date: ______/______ Printed name as it appears on your card: _______________________________________________________________________ Signature: ___________________________________________________Cell phone/telephone: ___________________________ Email: __________________________________________________________________________________________________ When would you like us to contact you? I would like to receive information from The Hope Institute ❑ Quarterly ❑ Semi-Annually ❑ Annually Create a Legacy of Hope for the Children of The Hope Institute ❑ 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. 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 Event Supporters We wish to thank our special friends who have provided major support to The Hope Institute’s fundraising events. 5Flavors Catering Brian and Kate Flanagan Ameren CILCO Kevin Flood Appearances Salon & Retreat Frye-Williamson Press, Inc. Asthma Allergy Center, Sudha Prasad MD FWAI Architects Inc. Don and Linda Bast The Gallery Hair & Body Spa Robert and Carolyn Blackwell Hanson Professional Services, Inc. Kevin and Courtney Boehm William and MaryPat Hay BOKA Restaurant Group Heartland Credit Union Brandt Consolidated, Inc. Ronald N. Heftman, P .C. Brown, Hay & Stephens, LLP Henson Robinson Company Butler Funeral Homes & Cremation Tribute Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP Center Illinois National Bank Bill and Julie Cellini Kerber, Eck & Braeckel, LLP J.P Morgan Chase . Kimberly Smoot Photography CMFI Group King Technology, Inc. Ginny Conlee Kinzie Chophouse Kimberly Copp and Paul Ballam Judy and Bob Kjellander Nancy DeMarco James Lathim, Shear Artistry Brian Duncan, Bin 36 Suzy LeClair Edward Jones-Springfield Area Financial Levi, Ray and Shoup Foundation Advisors Mary Frisk Loken Bill and Susan Enlow Nicki Pecori and Alderman Bob Fioretti continued on back cover me magazine 7
  8. 8. NON PROFIT The US POSTAGE Hfor Children and Families OPE INSTITUTE PAID SOUTH SUBURBAN PERMIT NO 799 15 East Hazel Dell Lane PO Box 2817 Springfield, IL 62708-2817 Giving the Gift of Hope continued from page 7 Hope’s Generous Event Supporters Nancy Long Shefsky & Froelich Ltd., Cid and Mary Froelich Heather Lubin Sikich, LLP Sidney and Natalie Marder SIU School of Medicine, Division of Child and Marine Bank, Springfield Adolescent Neurology Mary Michelle Winery Southern Wine & Spirits of Illinois Dawn McCarthy Dan and Judy Stevens Jim and Annette McDermott Chris and Erin Stone David McEntee and Sharon Coughlin Sue Stone Mercy Home for Boys & Girls Streamwood Behavioral Health Center Michael Minton Judy and Ted Sunder Joyce and Steven Nardulli Chef Giuseppe Tentori, Perennial Niemczyk Painting & Papering Co. Karun and Curtis Tillett Peter and Mimi O’Brien Tobin Jewelers O’Brien’s Restaurant Helen Tolan Party Creations Joseph and Candace Townsend Pearson Lori Vallelunga and John Galik Satch and Rosemary Pecori Rita and Jack Victor Howard & Beverly Peters Chef Paul Virant, Vie Restaurant Tom and Lori Pritchett Wal-Mart Andrew Raucci and Christine Dudley Joseph and Jean Wilkins Renken Dentistry Terry and Georgia Winson Patti Riggs Zara’s Collision Center Michael Robillard Joseph and Ellen Zerega R.W. Troxell & Company ZZAZZ Productions Scott & Scott, P.C. If you would like to learn more about The Hope Institute’s 2010 events, please visit our website at or call 217-585-5119.