Featured in the Connecticut Family Magazine this fall, was Santina and her son, Gabriel. This beautiful young family shared the financial hardships that all families with children with special needs face. Santina was also able to share the incredible journey that she and Gabriel have begun. From state agencies to school systems, even local fire departments, Santina and Gabriel have learned that it never hurts to ask when she recounted the day that she called her local fire department to inquire about any activities they could assist with for Gabriel’s birthday. The Old Saybrook Fire Department stepped up and saved the day, coming to his home and giving him a once in a lifetime chance to ride in a fire truck!
Although every day has something special in it, Santina is no stranger to the battles that parents and families face within in CT for services, funding and assistance. Read more about their incredible journey by following the link below.
Click the link to read the story in its entirety. Connecticut Family Magazine Fall 2014
UCP of Eastern CT would like to thank
Chelsea Groton Foundation for their generous donation.
Community partners such as the Chelsea Groton Foundation make it possible for UCP ECT to ensure that individuals with disabilities live a life without limits!
14 year old Nick lives in a beautiful home in Pawcatuck with his sisters, Peyton and Quinn, and his parents.
Now, for most of us, going outside is pretty easy but for Nick it required a lot of extra hands and work. First, Nick’s Mom had to lift Nick and his wheelchair over the step. Thats 125 pounds! Then she had to turn Nick and his chair sideways to line up with the ramp which was very fragile, broken in several places and being held together with duct tape.
That was not an easy task. And it definitely was not going to get any easier as Nick got older.
Nick’s family contacted UCP for assistance and funding through grants.
With the help of the CHEFA grant, UCP was able to contract with an accessibility solutions contractor for the purchase and build of a wooden ramp that is attached to the house and comes with a lifetime warranty. The ramp is 16 feet long and allows for direct access to the home without any extra lifting over thresholds.
Life just got a little easier for Nick and his family and we were happy to help!
When Nick’s Grandmother called UCP of Eastern Connecticuts Disability Support Coordinator for help finding a safety seat for Nick to ride in, we knew what to do. And we were thrilled to help!
Nick is 10 years old and loves Nintendo DS, animals, school and playing in this school band. What he doesn’t love is riding in the car. Nick outgrew his toddler size booster seat and it was uncomfortable. Because of his Cerebral Palsy, Nick still needs some upper body support in combination with a safety harness.
UCP and Nick’s Mom, Cassie, found a Adjustable Position car seat system that would allow for growth, safety, style and adaptability. Most safety seats such as this have to be purchased on line and can cost approximately $1500.
Thanks to help from UCP and the Bellow’s Grant, Nick’s safety seat was paid for in full.
Now, Nick can add car rides to his list of favorites!