I love reading your Jackass V. Kindness posts — mostly for the kindness portions. I'd like to share a kindness with you.
Eddie Garretson is an average Joe who doesn't have a kid with disabilities, but just a guy who decided 10 years ago that kids and young adults with disabilities deserve the opportunity to have social lives. Eddie's Club ( http://www.eddiesclub.org) is a recreational club for kids and young adults with disabilities, using “normal” teens as buddies, and adult volunteers to help supervise various activities.
My son Zach loves going to Eddie's Club — it's the highlight of his week. It's the only place, outside of his own home, that he is treated like the “cool” guy he is. Usually, Eddie's Club is held at a local Jr. high, but other times, this guy manages to get the kids and families tickets to college basketball games, Disney on Ice, bowling, movies, and teen dinners at a local pizza parlor.
In the late Spring and Summer, Eddie's Club adjourns and is replaced by Springfield Challenger Baseball http://www.springfieldchallenger.org) also started by Eddie and some of his friends from Springfield, VA. Each Mother's Day weekend, Eddie provides a 2 day vacation at the beach for each kid and their family, along with participation in a Challenger baseball tournament. It's the only vacation some of us get all year long.
Eddie runs both all-volunteer programs on unbelievably small budgets, funded mostly through donations. I believe that he probably kicks in some of his own money — which he doesn't have a lot of — to keep things going. I honest to God don't know how he does it all.
So, if you have any clients who are from the Washington, DC area or the Northern Virginia area, and if any of them want to do a kindness and have a heart for people with disabilities, I ask that you please point them towards Eddie's Club.
Mom to Zach,13 yo with a chromosome 6p24 to 6pter deletion