Friday, July 4, 2014

4th of July at Easter Seals

July hosts one of our very favorite holidays: 4th of July. Not only because it revels in our marvelous nation but because it promotes our very favorite word: INDEPENDENCE. At the end of the day our goal is simple: help people with special needs become independent. For nearly 100 years Easter Seals has worked to ensure that these individuals have a place that is both safe and pushes them excel to their full potential. One way we do this is through our employment services. Nationwide, Easter Seals has been able to assist thousands of people with a variety of special needs train, prepare for, and find a job. Because unemployment among the disability community is twelve times that of the average, we take this issue very seriously and it is constantly on our minds. Hearing of a first pay check or the latest friend someone made at work is as exciting for us as it is for them. We hope to shrink the unemployment rate and expand awareness for the equality of all people in the workplace. Independence is for all people, we are here to make sure that message is not forgotten. For more information please log onto our website and see how you can get involved in the quest for independence.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Easter Seals Parents

Parents are among the strongest people we know. Sometimes it’s hard to believe all the unconditional love, support and care one person can give to another. This is why parents with special needs children are so important to us! We want to take the time out to mention one of the incredible parents we have been lucky enough to work with.


Shaquita’s Story: Shaquita Davis discovered she was expecting beautiful twin girls at five months pregnant. This happy news would prove to be short-lived however, as the doctor later informed her that there were apparent complications. Shaquita’s twins had what is known as twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome. The girls were developing in a shared placenta sack with abnormal blood vessels. In her case, one twin was not receiving as many nutrients as the other, placing all three lives in jeopardy. The possibility of one child thriving while the other developed heart defects or grew malnourished was looming.


As her pregnancy progressed, doctors told Shaquita that the only way of ensuring the survival of her twins was to have emergency surgery. Concerned for her girls, she made an immediate decision to undergo surgery; even if it meant endangering her own life. After hours in the OR, the procedure was successful and Shaquita’s beautiful identical twin girls were born. Their names, Truste’ and B’Lyeve, are reminiscent of their inspiring journey into life. Truste’ was born with a cleft lip palate and had corrective surgery.  B’Lyeve defied the odds and survived!


Shaquita came to the Easter Seals Murray Child Development Center after one twin was diagnosed with physical and developmental delays. Not wanting to separate her girls, she enrolled Truste’ and B’Lyeve in our program as it was the only place that would accept them both. Shaquita believes this is the perfect place for her 9-month old children to grow together and support each other, especially though their vital developmental stages. 


For more stories that parents have shared click:

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Earth Day

  Easter Seals Florida takes pride in the ways that we integrate our programs with mother nature. Our very own Day Break center for adults and seniors is home to a marvelous sensory garden. There, our older adult members are able to plant a variety of different flowers, vegetables and herbs. We like to think that it’s the union of social interactions and nature that keep our members happy.
 Camp Challenge also proves this each and every year. Every child and adult that comes our patch of forested fun leaves feeling a new vigor. We have our campers interact with all sorts of life from trees on the zipline, petting zoo animals, nature trails and more. We couldn’t provide all of these things without loving our earth and respecting it in every way possible. We are proud to say that both our campers and our camp counselors are constantly learning about our earth and how to maintain it's impeccable beauty. So here’s to making every day Earth Day!
 If you are interested in helping us keep Camp Challenge the lush, green playground it is visit:

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Developmental disabilities Awareness Month: Michelle's Story

There is a difference between being “different” and being “unique”. As an individual facing developmental disabilities, there’s no denying Michelle is “different” from your average 24 year old. She is one of the 4.6 million Americans living with such a disability, but out of those millions, she is unique. And that’s where we come in.

 After moving to Central Florida from New Jersey, Michelle’s family discovered our Day Break program located in Winter Park. Her mother and step-father, both employed full time, felt uneasy about leaving their daughter home while they were working. Apart from Michelle living with congenital heart disease, developmental delays and hypertension, Michelle’s parents were concerned about her introverted nature. They wanted her to be social and were certain that in their absence, she would spent a majority of her time watching TV. Luckily, they found just what they were looking for in Easter Seals. Day Break offers a caring daytime environment for adults over the age of 18 with special needs or disabilities. With a balanced daily meal and plenty of social activities for Michelle, her parents couldn’t think of a better place for her. So, they decided to dive in.

At first, Michelle was shy and reserved. Given a few months, however, Michelle would soon become quite the social butterfly. She discovered her love for arts & crafts and her incredible urge to help others in any way she possible. Her parents are absolutely thrilled with her daily socialization, and thank goodness too, because with her ever-growing enthusiasm and caring nature we can’t help but adore her! At Day Break, Michelle has been able to meet new people, try a variation of activities, and discover exactly what makes her unique.

In honor of March being “Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month” we want to not only share Michelle’s awesome story of self-discovery, but promote the awareness of individuals living with developmental disabilities. Everyone deserves their chance to shine and we at Easter Seals let our members shine every single day.

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