Monday, February 26, 2018

Who and What is PeerPals.org?

You may have seen us promote and speak about PeerPals.org in our social media posts. Who are they? What are they up to? Let's highlight who they are in today's blog. 


PeerPals.org matches children with disabilities with children who are on track for typical cognitive development for play dates. PeerPals.org is a501(c)(3) charity that charges nothing to any of it's participants. They rely only on the funding of donations from the community to run.

Because of their disability, they may look or act differently than other kids in class and this can create large obstacles in making friends. The way this program is designed,  kids with disabilities will have the chance to communicate and interact with children who may not be exactly like them and vice versa.

This gives the chance for children without disabilities learn to develop empathy, creating a model peer to have in school. Play dates are guided and run in fun and safely monitored environments.

The overall idea is to promote a better elementary school experience. PeerPals.org says, "When I talk with adults with disabilities they all seem to share a similar story about when they were in elementary school…that they had never been invited to a birthday party or on a play date.  As the mother of three children, each of whom was diagnosed with autism by the age of two, this broke my heart.  I didn’t want this future for my own children or anyone else’s child."

If you feel this is an organization you would like to your child to participate in, disability or not, there is an application process you can learn more about on Peer Pals' site here: http://www.peerpals.org/page/signup

PeerPals is also actively looking for special education teachers, speech pathologists, occupational therapists, physical therapists, aba teachers, and regular education teachers to volunteer. If you feel this might fit your calling, check out how to volunteer here: https://secure.peerpals.org/pages/volunteers

Keep in Mind, Sean Acosta is being honored as their Community Champion!  Learn more about this evening event here: https://secure.peerpals.org/page/contribute/2018PlantingSeedsofCommunityTickets 

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