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GiGi’s Playhouse is a special place for this family

We are Dominick and Mery Furlano, and our family lives in the south Hillsborough County area of Tampa Bay.  We have 7 children—5 girls and 2 boys.  Our youngest four daughters were born in the Republic of China, whom we adopted as orphans.  Fallon Ella, age 9, was born with Trisomy 21.  Genevieve Lily, 8, was born with Epidermolysis Bullosa Simplex.  Fallon and Genevieve are only 5 months apart in age and are our virtual twins.

Falcon and Genevieve joined GiGi’s Playhouse—Tampa together right from the get-go at the Grand Opening, and participate weekly in the free, purposeful programming offered there. They’ve joinedthe Destination Discovery, Playhouse Pals, and Young Athletes – Special Olympics programs.


The program leads are not only experienced educators, they are also committed to making a difference in the lives of our children.  And getting to know other parents and other families at GiGi’s really reinforces the fact that we are all in this wonderful journey together.  GiGi’s has become a very popular word in our household.  We even attend when there are no programs available.  Fallon and Genevieve just enjoy spending time at GiGi’s, a place where they always feel welcomed and feel like they belong!

We are very grateful to all the special people whose vision and hard work brought GiGi’s Playhouse to the Tampa Bay community.

GiGi’s Playhouse offers free, purposeful programs to every age group.  Dominick truly enjoys spending time and interacting with our older participants in Wednesday’s Inspire Kitchen – Cooking Club, under the leadership of Chef Rob Rawlings. Witnessing the participants learning valuable, everyday life skills—and building on those skills each week—really demonstrates what GiGi’s is all about.

GiGi’s Playhouse is a special place of acceptance where our children can Learn, Play, and Laugh!

1 Comment

  1. Linda Berry on October 1, 2018 at 9:36 am

    I believe the Cooking Club is pivotal to young adults independence. It is creative, fun, simplistic and probably one of the best in the Nation.
    Thanks Chef Rawlings.

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