“I couldn’t sit and do nothing,” explains Deborah as her daughter Patty plays around her. Patty, a rambunctious eight year-old, was born with a genetic abnormality that affects her ability to communicate and concentrate. “She struggles with learning, but she has such a high level of empathy,” says Collette, their Way to Grow Family Educator.
Deborah herself struggled in school and was a victim of bullying as a child. Looking back, she realizes this deeply affected her confidence. As a mother, she was adamant about creating a better life for her daughter and knew she needed resources to help make that happen, especially considering Patty’s specific needs. Determined to support her daughter in every possible way, Deborah tirelessly researched and contacted resources to help Patty progress and grow. In early 2015, a referral from Healthy Families brought Deborah and Patty to Way to Grow.
Fast forward to today, and Collette says Patty has made significant progress in her reading. What’s more, together she and Deborah have continued to build Patty’s social skills while connecting her with environments and mentors that are helping her thrive. Reflecting on her time with Way to Grow, Deborah also recognizes that Patty was not the only one growing these past few years. By attending education and advocacy events, Deborah has expanded her own social skills, increased her confidence, and has become one of Way to Grow’s most active parent champions. “Collette and Way to Grow have been a godsend to our lives. I cannot wait to see what our future holds!”