Stephen and Charlotte – found each other at GiGi’s Playhouse

Charlotte and her mother, Amy, discuss the impact of GiGi’s Playhouse on their lives. Charlotte struggled with making friends and feeling validated before finding GiGi’s Playhouse. The organization provided a supportive and accepting environment where Charlotte feels beautiful and loved. Similarly, Steven, who had become isolated and depressed during the pandemic, found solace and friendship at GiGi’s Playhouse. The organization has helped individuals like Charlotte and Steven find their voice and break through limitations.

Video transcription:

Charlotte: My name’s Charlotte.

Amy: My name is Am. I’m Charlotte’s mom. GiGi’s Playhouse has been so important to us in our lives that we’ve organized our whole lives around GiGi’s Playhouse. It makes her feel so validated, but Charlotte wasn’t doing fantastic. It was hard.

Charlotte: It was hard.

Amy: It was hard. Didn’t have friends. It was really a sad sight to see, and we didn’t want that for her. We knew there was something better out there for her. That’s when we found Gigi’s Playhouse, and it was just like a light in the end of the tunnel. Everybody’s much happier in a place where we accept Charlotte for who she is. Life is beautiful and she feels beautiful, and she has a lot of love and we love her.

Stephen’s sister: Stephen was born when I was 12 years old. I’m his older sister. He’s been through quite a lot. The start of the pandemic, his day program wasn’t meeting. The more isolated he was from the world, the more depressed he became. He started coming to fantastic friends. He just opened up. He became himself again, so he’d been going to fantastic friends for about a year. He had a friend named Charlotte. One evening, Charlotte told Stephen that she would like to go on a date, and now she’s your girlfriend, right?

Charlotte: I love fantastic friend. I love boyfriend.

Franco: We’re seeing these incredible breakthroughs happening all across our network. Finally, giving adults the opportunity to go out there and use that voice that they find here at GiGi’s.

Amy: We don’t want to set limits because Charlotte will tell us what she can do. She will show us, she will tell us, and we want to keep the doors wide open for her. Open the doors.

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