GiGi’s Kitchen is Serving up Independence 

And we’re doing it with help from a generous donor 

At GiGi’s Playhouse, we don’t lack ambition.  

Our mission is not only to change how the world views Down syndrome, but also to completely change the world, making it more accepting for EVERYONE!  

It’s a big job. One we work in pursuit of every day. 

Through our FREE programming at our 59 Playhouse locations (and counting), as well as our Virtual Playhouse, we foster understanding and promote inclusivity. As we keep working to bring substantial change to entire communities, it’s easy to lose sight of the incredible impact one individual can have, but we’ve seen it firsthand. 

The generosity of countless individuals has enabled us to continue to reach more families, help more participants, and ultimately improve the lives of so many. 

At the end of the day, GiGi’s programming changes lives.  

Our GiGi’s Kitchen program exemplifies this. GiGi’s Kitchen is a program designed to give our participants early exposure to practical cooking skills, providing them hands-on experience with cooking, nutrition, and healthy living. 

At first glance, one might think GiGi’s Kitchen is simply a fun program — that it allows our participants to experiment in a kitchen and learn a few recipes, but the impact of GiGi’s kitchen is greater than that. Much greater. 

Developing cooking skills and learning about proper nutrition empowers our participants to improve their overall health and wellness. By teaching our participants what foods to eat and how to properly prepare them, we can help them lessen the complications that come from low muscle tone, something commonly associated with Down syndrome. 

More than that, GiGi’s Kitchen lays the groundwork for our participants to achieve independence and live long, healthy lives! GiGi’s Kitchen reaches participants of every age level, whether they’re 7-year-olds learning the basics of nutrition, or an adult who’s trying to become independent. GiGi’s Kitchen is a game-changer! 

Yet, at one point, it was uncertain if GiGi’s Kitchen would ever come to fruition.  

Although our programs are 100% FREE to participants and families, it costs us money to design a new program, pilot it, and introduce it to all our Playhouses. There was a tremendous need for a program like GiGi’s Kitchen, but it was unclear if we’d able to secure the seed money needed to implement the program. 

For a moment, it seemed like GiGi’s Kitchen might be a pipe dream. 

…Until an anonymous donor entered the picture and seized the skillet. 

This donor immediately recognized the need for the program, but more than that, this donor realized that they could step in, immediately make a difference, and help us change the world! From the donor’s seed money, we were able to design and pilot the program, and now, GiGi’s Kitchen is in over 33 of our Playhouses and changing lives daily!  

None of this would have been possible without our anonymous donor and their gift! 

Trying to change the world often seems like an impossible, daunting task, but the truth is, an individual act, whether it’s a monetary donation or a simple act of kindness, can make a meaningful difference. 

This story serves as an important reminder that we all can change the world… provided we don’t lack ambition. 

Want to help us change the world? No matter the size of the gift, your contribution will benefit the entire GiGi’s Playhouse network and help provide FREE and purposeful programs. Donate today. 

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