The Voice on the Other End of the Phone . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
When the phone rings at GiGi’s Playhouse Phoenix, someone will almost always be available to answer. Our dedicated Staff and volunteers try to always be available and consider this one of the most important aspects of their jobs. Most of the calls that come in, are from parents asking about our programs, services, and opportunities available to participants with Down syndrome. Our Staff prides themselves in being available to our community whenever the phone rings and they do so with enthusiasm, encouragement, and acceptance.
Not long ago, one of our Staff answered the phone and on the other end was a woman who had nowhere to turn and needed help. She had just lost a member of her family and at the same time, an adult family member who has Down syndrome was placed in her custody. She was not only dealing with her own grief, but she had a new set of responsibilities and challenges in helping her new challenge. When she called, she had a whirlwind of questions. She found GiGi’s by doing a search on the internet. When she called GiGi’s she was listened to with a compassionate ear by someone who understood her fear, concern, and lack of confidence.
What started out as a multitude of questions became an opportunity for GiGi’s Playhouse Phoenix to offer support and to encourage this new guardian of an incredibly special person. This Staff Person who answered, was uniquely qualified to answer the phone that day. She has an adult daughter with Down syndrome. If you’ve had the blessing of meeting any of our Playhouse Staff, you know they will listen with empathy and compassion. At the end of the conversation, the woman was able to take a deep breath and think a little more clearly. Through that phone call, she realized she was not alone on her new and unexpected journey. She learned that a listening ear was just a phone call away. Playhouse Staff share resources, their personal experiences, and encouragement along with a promise to keep in touch.
That is what 15 minutes at GiGi’s Playhouse is all about. An opportunity to connect, support and encourage families regardless of the stage they are in. We are stronger together!
Robin Lea Amos