“It’s a feeling like none other.”

As most of you know, our annual Superhero 5K Run, 1 Mile Walk and Kids Dash is just around the corner. Families have been asked to create their fundraising teams and we currently have 24 teams raising funds for our local Playhouse. The top 3 fundraising teams will receive incentives for their efforts. We asked the first few families that created teams to help us with a series of blog posts related to their experience with the race and the impact it and GiGi’s has had on them and their families. Below you will see what Brian Yaklich, our current Board Vice-President, had to say.

How did you hear about GiGi’s Playhouse?

We heard about GiGi’s from the Social Worker at the hospital after we were given our newborn daughter’s diagnosis.  We finally made the call and visited a month after Zoey was born.

How long have you been participating in programming here at GiGi’s?

We have been participating in programming since day 1.  The 2 & Under group helped us immensely by allowing us to meet other parents of small children with Down syndrome, discuss challenges, and to “strategize” about what methods were working.  Zoey is now finishing up with her first session of literacy tutoring, as well as other programs.  Our favorite is LMNOP, because the entire family gets to interact and have fun while watching her learn.

If you were to pick one thing to say about GiGi’s, what would be the #BestofAll you would like to share?

GiGi’s gave us an easy avenue to get information and about a life that we had little knowledge of.

Why is this Superhero 5K fundraiser important to you?

Our family and friends treat the Superhero 5K as a celebration of all of the challenges and barriers that Zoey continues to push through.  It is a very uplifting experience and the proceeds go towards bettering her life and all of the other GiGi’s families.

Tell us about your team

Our team “Team ZOEY GRACE” is named after our rambunctious 3-year-old daughter.  We have family, friends, coworkers, and even folks that have met Zoey through others that join our team to show support.  It really has shown us that individuals with Down syndrome have a profound effect on everyone they meet.  Our fundraising goal for 2016 is $5,000.00.

Would you encourage others to create teams and/or participate in the race?

I would encourage families to create teams and participate in the entire day.  You’ll be amazed at the amount of people that your child has touched in some way just by being who they are.  It is a feeling like none other.

Thank you Brian for sharing your story (and Zoey) with all of us.

Team Zoey Grace

Stayed tuned in to our blog for additional stories from a few of our team captains. If you have your team set up and would like to share your story, please let us know.  To see a list of the current teams and their fundraising pages, click here.

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