Thank you for supporting the festival and the services provided by the Holmes County Association for Handicapped Citizens.
The roots of the Association go back to the early 1960's when children with mental retardation were excluded from public school services. Parents banded together to create schools in church basements or where ever they could get donated space. Parents provided transportation and raised funds to pay the teachers. Mrs. Jennifer Fair was the first teacher hired by the Association in Holmes County. The old Bunker Hill School was purchased in 1965 through fund raising projects by parents. Through the efforts of concerned parents, Ohio created County Boards of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities (MR/DD). The Holmes County Board of DD has grown to include Early Intervention Services, Preschool services, the School program, the Habilitation Center and Lynn Hope Industries for adults, family support services, transportation from anywhere in the county, residential supports and group living homes.
Since the 1960's, the Association has changed their name several times but their support for services for people with disabilities has never wavered. In 1977, the first Spring Festival was started. Through raffles, donations, bake sales and games; parents raised $4,000.00. This year will be the 36th Spring Festival. There will still be a bake sale but there are also meals, a craft auction, a furniture auction, a quilt auction and a silent auction. Because of the ongoing support from the Holmes County community for the Spring Festival, the Association has been able to fund a wide variety of unique services to help people with disabilities and their families.
The Holmes County Association for Handicapped Citizens is a non-profit organization. Anyone who supports the mission of the association is welcome to be a member. Annual family membership costs $8.00. Life memberships are available for $100.00. The members elect seven trustees to manage the activities of the Association. The trustees meet 11 times per year and the general membership meets 10 times per year, generally the first Tuesday evening of each month. The trustees appoint a treasurer to pay bills, manage the budget and perform other fiscal duties. An audit of the books is performed yearly. A staff member from the Training Center (Holmes County Board of Developmental Disabilities) serves as the secretary. The Superintendent of the Training Center serves as an ex-officio trustee (non-voting).
To educate the public on all aspects of disabilities.
To explore and exhaust every means to forward the welfare of the handicapped citizen.
Respite care for families caring for a adult or child with a developmental disability. Families are asked to pay 25% of the cost, although there are procedures to waive this requirement in hardship situations. Deb Schafer coordinates respite and transportation requests.
Transportation assistance to help families access medical care, therapies and HCTC activities.
Special Olympics support including equipment, supplies, traveling expenses (meals/hotels), uniforms, etc.
Parent Programs are provided monthly including the Mothers Club, the Down's Syndrome Reunion, Spina Bifida Reunion, and others.
Parent Trainings by bringing in speakers about disabilities
Teacher/adult program grants. The Association provides for each Teacher and adult program area to purchase supplies and materials.
KIDS committee has fund raisers throughout the year through the Association to support the purchase of specialized communication and adaptive equipment. At least one adult or child is helped with communication device each year.
Special Situations: The Association considers all requests for items and services to meet the special needs of individuals with handicapping conditions. Other funding sources must be accessed first.
Crisis support to individuals and families involved in Training Center services. Upon the passing of loved ones the Association sends flowers and/or a ham to the family.
Parent Resources -Library: Funding for new books and adaptive toys for the Special Needs Library, those can be borrowed from the library by Holmes County families.
Support for the Holmes CBDD Levy committee
Business expenses of the Association: audit, supplies, etc.
Festival expenses are part of that budget (food, tables, chairs, containers, etc.)
Community Support: Annual donation of noodles to Share-A-Christmas
HCTC Staff support: Staff recognition activities
Specialized Equipment for school, adult program or individuals, as requested and approved. Requests approved: electric wheelchair, oximonitor, lifting equipment, standing devices, "SMART" boards for classrooms, I-Pad, etc.
Ongoing Special Projects: Support for families with genetic/metabolic disorders through monthly visits by Dr. Wang of DDC Clinic and genetic testing
Support for the Windows of Hope Genetics Information Clinic,
Support for the Crippled Children's Fund,
Anesthesiologist services in the dental clinic
New School Bus for the Training Center
Past Projects funded by the Association: Horse Shelter.. HCTC sign... Lynn Hope Building ... Pavilion, including 5 expansions ... Nature Trail ....
Everyone who helps with the festival is a volunteer and all auction items are donated.
Many blessing have accrued to our families
and the Training Center from the Spring Festival.
The trustees take their stewardship seriously and ensure dollars are well spent.
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