ConnectAbility, Inc.

Rating: 4.92 stars   13 reviews

Issues: Disabilities, Human Services

Location: PO Box 381 Dahlonega GA 30533 USA

Mission:
Results: We have been hosting respite care events for the past 8 years to allow our participants to enjoy a fun-filled evening while parents & caregivers have some time to themselves. Parent Share Groups are hosted twice each month to share resources and friendships. All of our events are FREE to participants.
Target demographics: Adults & children with disabilities along with their families.
Geographic areas served: Northeast Georgia including the following counties: Lumpkin, Dawson, White, Hall and Forsyth

2011 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

My son has been a part of Sidekicks - and now Connectability for almost 7 years. From his first days of coming to a gathering and watching from the fringes to now being the cheerleader/life of the party, he has always felt welcome and we felt he was safe. His love for Jacque and her gang is visible anytime their names are mentioned. James and Jacque/Jacque and James - what wonderful examples to the community.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

ConnectAbility and Sidekicks are amazing! My daughter and I had the privilege of visiting the Sidekicks respite program and observe what a blessing it is to the people served and their families - and also to those volunteers who help make it possible. It is a loving, caring environment where people are treated with dignity, respect, and just valued for who they are. There is fun, crafts, snacks, Bible stories, music - and parents/caregivers get some needed rest during this time. Jacquelyn Daniel started all of this and has some of the most dedicated volunteers. It is hard work but is a passion of hers to help people with disabilities.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Observing Sidekicks helped me start a respite program at Duluth First Baptist Church. We have about 25 children every month on a Saturday. Also, Jackie's example is helping others around the state do likewise through her facebook and internet postings and also by sharing at Developmental Disabilities Ministries Opening New Worlds Conference this year.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

No changes to the program and all that they do to help people with disabilities. Their heart for others is incredible. Just wish there were more funding available, and additional volunteers are always needed.

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Rating: 5 stars  

We have been truely blessed to have the opportunity to participate in all of the activities that Connectability provides to our extended community. Connectability addresses so many areas of great need for us including respite for individuals of all ages with special needs, share groups for caregivers and families, organizational and volunteer support for Special Olympics, and the development and support of special needs ministries in non-denominational places of worship. Jacqueline Daniel has created, nutured, and expanded Connectability in order to reach that invisible population - the often forgotten and neglected population of those with disabilities. As a parent of a child with Down syndrome, I can honestly tell you that I can rest easier knowing that my child has a place in our community thanks to Connectablity. I will always be grateful for Jacqueline and for Connectability.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have personally expereinced the results of this organization in numerous ways. Our son is warmly welcomed in church, VBS, and respites due to Connectability. I am supported by members of the share group who help me to find resources needed for our son. Our son has the opportunity to participate in sports such as Hero baseball and Special Olympics which helps to improve his physical and social well being.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would clone both Connectability and Jacqueline Daniel. It is a shame that other communities throughout our nation (especially rural communities) can not have the same opportunities that we have via Connectabilty. It is hard to find someone with such a passion for helping people with disabilities like Jacqueline Daniel.

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Rating: 5 stars  

Jacque Daniel has an incredible heart for those with special needs. I have watched her passion as a volunteer develop in this area since she was teenager. Since those many years ago she has prepared herself both educationally and as a young leader for her most recent endeavor of founding ConnectAbility, a not for profit organization focusing specifically on those with special needs. Her vision extends from educating and connecting churches of all sizes and denominations, to participation in school systems and in the Special Olympics. Great things are in store for this organization where countless individuals and their extended families will be strengthened and encouraged. With so many competing intangibles for our time and finances, Jacque Daniel’s passion and excitement for what she believes is not only a career, but a calling, separates her from the rest.

Paul Bates, Pastor, Author, & ConnectAbility Volunteer

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have personally been a part of seeing families that were largely disconnected from mainstream society become connected to an extended family of understanding and caring individuals of similar challenges.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Emphasize the need for continued training of volunteers to better understand the many varying nuances of those with special needs.

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Rating: 5 stars  

What an incredible opportunity to serve children and adults with special needs! ConnectAbility is led by Jacque Daniel, a seasoned professional in this field. She had the credentials and more importantly, the heart, passion, and drive to make dreams a reality for people who are in great need. She has created an event each month called Sidekicks, in which special needs children and adults can come and enjoy many creative life experiences. The special needs attendees are treated with respect, love and the specific care that they individually require.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have seen this organization function from the inside out. Very impressive.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

This organization needs more funds to create larger events to serve more people in need.

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Rating: 5 stars  

My friend's daughter has been with Sidekicks for the past three years and the growth I have seen in her is amazing! It comes across in her attitude, in her smile, in her energy! I am looking forward to getting a chance to volunteer with Sidekicks sometime in the near future after seeing the amazing things they help to accomplish!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Through spending time with my friend's daughter and attending events.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

None as of yet.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I have been a volunteer with Sidekicks for many years. As a special ed teacher, I have seen few organizations available that are so helpful to the families of children with special needs. I have enjoyed watching the children in program mature and gain social skills. Last year I took guardianship of a 10 year old with special needs. Several of the parents have helped me with naviagating thru some programs that were unfamiliar to me. So, I have seen both sides of the organization-both as a volunteer and a new parent. I highly recommend this organization for families who have children with special needs.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

This organization has increased my knowledge about the needs of parents whose children have special needs. It has been very enjoyable working with the children and getting to know them and their parents.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I can't think of any changes

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Rating: 5 stars  

I was invited about 5 years ago to bring my daughter to Sidekicks and our family was instantly welcomed with an incredible amount of warmth and kindess that we so desperately needed at that time in our lives. My daughter, Fiona, LOVES Sidekicks and her two typically developing brothers also enjoyed participated in the fun Friday evenings once/month. It is difficult to get a babysitter to watch three young children, esp when one has special needs, and this time also afforded my husband and I a few hours to go to dinner and get a needed break. Some months, we would stay and volunteer as well and found we enjoyed that equally as much. I began work on my Masters degree in Special Education about this same time and then spent the next two Summers getting to volunteer to help with Sidekicks' VBS program. I truly think that perhaps tied with my wedding week and the weeks of my children's births, these are the two happiest weeks of my life thus far. The entire group of Sidekicks, led by example by Jacques Daniel, is the most joyous group of people I have ever met- people that I know God put on this planet to make a better place- and it is contagious. As I am a special education teacher and have been involved with Sidekicks for a few years, I was recently asked to join the Board of Directors for this organization.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

We are off to a great start to building this group to serve even more children and adults and families throughout the North Georgia area. The organization now is working with Special Olympics in Lumpkin County and is expanding to offer parent support group meetings and many other wonderful opportunities for people with special needs.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Help it grow more! Reach more people!! Spread the word!!

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

ConnectAbility and Sidekicks is a much needed organization providing social interaction for adults and children with disabilities, while at the same time giving parents and caregivers much needed respite. Jacque Daniel has skill, experience (I should know, she worked with me years ago as a teen volunteer in a respite program I began in Gwinnett County!) and a natural ability to relate to individuals with disabilities. She's a dedicated, hard-worker with a heart to touch both the people she serves and their families. Any life would be enhanced by the services ConnectAbility provides and you are sure to leave with a smile on your face, eagerly awaiting the next opportunity to socialize with your friends or to take a breather knowing your loved one is having fun in a safe, caring, enriching environment!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Seeing the smiling faces in the photos that have been shared and by hearing the exciting story of this much needed organization from its inception to the present.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Find a stable, generous funding source in order to enlarge and expand these services.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I began volunteering with Sidekicks last year and have thoroughly enjoyed every opportunity to interact with this special group of people. My young son and I both look forward to our monthly get-togethers. In the beginning I thought I would be doing a good thing for this group - it turns out I think I get more rewards than I give. I know the parents and caregivers appreciate a few hours of free time and Jacque always plans a fun evening of activities for us to share. Looking forward to future opportunities to participate!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

our community as well as in my own family.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

possibly expand the hours and increase it's influence within the region as well as in other other communities around the U.S.

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