When I first started interning at GiGi’s Playhouse, I was excited because I wanted to experience a new environment and population. I had known that GiGi’s playhouse was a place to empower families and the community, but I have experienced so much more than just that. I am currently interning at GiGi’s Playhouse in Rockford, Illinois and a student at Rockford University. Since the first day that I walked in the doors at GiGi’s Playhouse, I have been surrounded with a kind and helpful network through the GiGi community. I am majoring in Human Development, so interning at GiGi’s Playhouse is a great opportunity for me to learn more about the development for a nonprofit organization and an individual diagnosed with Down syndrome. I am learning more about the assessments and techniques that are used and their life span development.

I work in GiGi U, and tutor math and literacy, and have coordinated the Valentine’s and Easter parties. I am learning more about the developmental process that is focused on at GiGi’s Playhouse. I have been able to work with administration and get to learn the structure and materials that are used for fundraising. Paula, Erin and Stacey have been amazing for reaching out and helping me during my time at GiGi’s Playhouse. They show so much love and support for the GiGi participants and families.

When I planned the Valentine’s and Easter parties, I was able to meet and talk to the families of GiGi’s Playhouse. It was amazing to see everyone get together and empower one another. Everyday is different at GiGi’s Playhouse and it is always exciting. I am able to tutor students of all different ages and it has been a wonderful experience. I am having an amazing experience and I believe that I am gaining a deeper understanding for GiGi’s Playhouse. I am so thankful for the opportunity to intern at GiGi’s and all of it’s community members.

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