A Museum for All of Us

What started as a simple donation of posters and prints from the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art to our "Birdie" themed classroom has become so much more. Early next month museum educators will be teaching a class onsite at Children's TLC for our three to five year old students. In December, one of our staff members will be part of a panel to help Nelson Atkins docents learn more about children with special needs. We talked to the Community Programs Manager at the Nelson, Christina Boutros, about some of the other efforts being made to make the museum more accessib...

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Seeing Hump Day in a New Light

For most of us, Wednesday is commonly referred to as “hump day.”  The day we have to get “over” to be closer to the weekend. But for Katherine, a three year old at Children’s TLC, it is something very different. “In our house, Wednesday is a national holiday,” says Katrina smiling. “It’s the day Katherine sees Miss Jodie.” Miss Jodie is Jodie Pafunda, MS, OTR/L, an occupational therapist at Children’s TLC who sees Katherine for her weekly OT appointment. “I’m really not kidding,” says Katrina. “Wednesdays with Miss Jodie have changed ...

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The ADA Turns 25 Today!

Where were you on July 26, 1990 when President George H. Bush signed the American Disabilities Act (ADA) into law? Well, Don Harkins, CEO of the Rehabilitation Institute of Kansas City, knows exactly where he was. “I was on the south lawn of the White House surrounded by thousands of people as we watched President Bush sign the ADA into law. The energy and excitement was palpable." The ADA is the first comprehensive civil rights law that protects people with disabilities from discrimination on the basis of disability.  It was passed almost unanimously by ...

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A #LabelMeAble Game Changer: Matthew Walzer + Nike = Flyease

Many of you have probably heard about the new Flyease brand of sneakers released by Nike last week. The story is a great #LabelMeAble one. It started initially with Nike's first employee, Jeff Johnson, writing to CEO Mark Parker about his need for a shoe Jeff could fasten with one hand. After his stroke, only one side of Jeff's body had the range of motion and strength required for his putting shoes on. They designed a shoe to meet his needs. The effort gained more momentum in 2012 when Matthew Walzer, who has cerebral palsy, wrote a letter to Nike: "I've worn ...

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KC Streetcar Building a Sensory Garden for Our Kids

On July 3rd we celebrated the beginning of our new sensory garden being built by the KC Streetcar Constructors at our Children’s Center Campus.  Even Mayor Sly James came to join us! The Streetcar team members are volunteering their time, supplies, equipment and peoplepower to build the garden that will benefit Children’s TLC, Children’s Center for the Visually Impaired, and the YMCA Early Learning Center. KC Streetcar Constructors have partnered with 40North Design in creating this new play area. Sensory Gardens are designed to be accessible in a number ...

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Missouri ABLE Act Passes

Helping children with disabilities is not a partisan issue, it’s a human issue. Governor Jay Nixon On June 30, 2015, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon signed the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act, Senate Bill 174, to allow families the opportunity to set up tax-exempt 529A savings accounts for disability-related expenses. The Missouri ABLE Act allows families to cover their child’s future education, housing, transportation and related expenses under a plan that is similar to the 529 college savings programs that helps families plan for college with a ...

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Happy 25th Anniversary ADA!

In the month of July, 25 years ago, the Americans With Disabilities Act was passed. This act was imperative as it enforced changes to existing structures, documents, and means of transportation to be accessible and usable by all. For some of us it may seem hard to imagine anyone would oppose an act that would allow children and adults with disabilities to better integrate into the community. However, many in opposition were concerned about the cost the implemented changes would require. Four months before the act was passed in to law, over 60 civil rights activi...

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Our 2015 Graduating Class

As the preschool year came to an end parents, teachers, and staff came together to celebrate our children’s success as they travel to the next chapter in school. For some this means going in to a new classroom within Children’s TLC, but for our 2015 graduating class it signifies a transition in to kindergarten. This was witnessed with a bittersweet but proud emotion as we see them growing up before our eyes. Our beloved teacher, Shun, opened the event with energy and excitement as we watched the graduating class proceed in to their front row seats. Each age ...

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2015 Bluebird Luncheon Is a Success

A special thank you to all of our sponsors, honorees and attendees for making the 2015 Bluebird Luncheon such a success. Close to 400 Children’s TLC supporters gathered at the Sheraton Hotel at Crown Center to celebrate the agency and the important services it provides to children with special needs. Attendees enjoyed a keynote address from GoBabyGofounder, Dr. James C. Galloway, and learned how Children’s TLC is implementing his program here in Kansas City. The agency also inducted four new members into the Bluebird Society. Peggy Dunn, William H. Dunn, Sr., ...

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Talk, Read, Play with Dinosaurs

Launched by The Family Conservancy and backed by Mayor Sly James, Talk, Read, Play is a unique education campaign promoting early development for children.  It's Dino Week at Children's TLC! We were lucky enough to have Sue McJunkin, a Children's TLC grandparent, spend time in our therapeutic preschool teaching us about the different types and sizes of dinosaurs. We learned about their dietary preferences and even touched a dinosaur's tooth! You can take dinosaurs from the classroom to your living room with these simple Talk, Read, Play activities. Talk about ...

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