The Parents and Friends Association was organized to meet needs identified by both parents and the staff at St. John of God Community Services. One vital need was to provide parents with a sense of community and support system. Parents raising a child with developmental disabilities face challenges that most parents cannot begin to imagine, creating a sense of isolation for families.
The second need identified was to provide parents with information and an opportunity to discuss and process that information. When the organization was first organized, members would attend a monthly information session where they could also ask questions and hear how other families were addressing certain behaviors and/or topics.
A final need was to assist with the Annual “I Care” Fundraising Campaign held each November. Throughout the years, the organization has provided a support system for families and raised thousands of dollars which were used to ensure that children served at St. John of God Community Services and the staff which provides the care and education has all the resources necessary to aid those with disabilities to reach their full potential.
Today, the Parents and Friends Association continues to raise funds to support the programs and services of St. John of God Community Services, but they also serve as a voice for the parents and friends of our children and clients. While fundraising continues to be an emphasis for the organization, raising funds to assist with programs and/or services that are not covered by tuition, the group meets regularly with leadership to share their needs and discuss how St. John of God Community Services can help meet those needs.
If you would like to join the Parents and Friends Association or learn more about our activities, please contact Br. Thomas Osorio, OH at TOsorio@sjogcs.org or 856.848.4700.
Your interest and support is appreciated!