Wednesday, July 18, 2012

HOPE (Hispanic Organization of Parents with Exceptional Children)

Family Voices Indiana shares this information about a support group for Latino families in Northwest Indiana. Our health information specialist, Ofelia Jimenez, can be contacted if you would like additional information: ofelia@fvindiana.org. 
Ofelia is bilingual and we are including her translation of the article, in Spanish.

by Ofelia Jimenez, health information specialist/bilingual specialist, Family Voices Indiana

HOPE, Hispanic Organization of Parents with Exceptional Children, is a non-profit family support organization for families who have children with exceptional needs or disabilities. The intent of the group is to assist families to obtain information regarding disabilities, laws related to educational rights for their children, and provide support to parents as well as social opportunities for their children.

Our group was founded by Sonia Reeves, Maria Maldonado, Nellie Feliciano and me, Ofelia Jimenez. We now have grown to over 100 families participating in our events. Families in this organization are from communities throughout Lake County.

We became a non-profit organization recognized by the state of Indiana last year; and we established a Board of Directors and are attempting to organize and plan to become a tax exempt organization when we are financially able to initiate the process.

The group attempts to conduct monthly meeting at Pastric Library, or wherever space is available, in East Chicago; generally on the third Saturday of every month. We provide workshops about: Article 7/special education law, Down Syndrome , Nutrition, abuse and neglect, SSI, ABA, etc.  Childcare services are provided to help families attend the workshops thanks to Myriam Pineda, Nellie Feliciano and a group  students working on community hours.

Due to limited opportunities for children with special needs to be included in the community or family events, we have also organized several festivities for families: Mother's Day parties, Halloween and Christmas parties, as well as a yearly picnic.

Our group activities have been supported by raffles, bake sales, donations, and in-kind contribution by parents.

En Espanol:

HOPE.- Organizacion de padres con niños con necesidades especiales.

Grupo HOPE es una organizacion sin fines de lucro, que da apoyo a familias con niños con necesidades especiales o discapacidad. Nuestra meta es asistir a las familias para que obtengan informacion acerca de : La discapacidad de su hijo(a), derechos y obligaciones relacionados con la Educacion, damos apoyo emocional a las familias y tenemos actividades sociales para que nestros niños  interactuen con otros niños y la comunidad.

El grupo HOPE fue fundado for Sonia Reeves, Maria Maldonado, Nellie Feliciano y una servidora Ofelia Jimenez. Nuestro grupo a ido creciendo y ahora contamos con mas de 100 familias que viven en el condado Lake.

El año pasado fuimos registrados como una Organizacion sin fines den Lucro en el estado de Indiana y establecimos una mesa Directiva, estamos planeando y buscando los recursos financieros para poder ser un grupo exento de impuestos.

Usualmente tenemos talleres educativos en la libreria “Pastric” en East Chicago, IN o donde encontramos algun lugar disponible. Regularmente nuestras reuniones son cada tercer Sabado del mes. Nuestros talleres Educativos son acerca de : Articulo 7, Ley de Educacion Especial, Sindrome de Down, Nutricion, Abuso y Negligencia, SSI, Terapia de Comportamiento,etc. 

Provemos cuidado de niños para que los padres tengan oportunidad de asistir a los talleres Educativos. El cuidado de niños se ha logrado gracias al apoyo de Myriam Pineda, Nellie Feliciano y un grupo de estudiantes que ofrecen servicio comunitario.

Debido a la falta de oportunidades para niños con necesidades especiales en nuestra comunidad, tenemos eventos y fiestas familiares como : Fiesta del Dia de las Madres, Fiesta de Halloween,Fiesta de Navidad y tenemos un paseo al parque una vez al año.

Nuestras actividades han sido financiadas por medio de rifas, venta de pasteles y galletas , donaciones y contribuciones voluntarias de algunos padres de familia.







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