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October 25, 2010

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October 25, 2010

UCP Central PA offers services to all ages and levels of special needs. I am not only a board member, but both my children attended UCP's Inclusive daycare. This experience allowed my children not to differentiate or judge those with special needs and taught them acceptance of all. I also needed early invention when our son had meningitis. UCP tested our son for developmental delays so we could work with him to improve his abilities that were affected. UCP is here to help with anything from early childhood delays to providing housing to adults with special needs to give them the opportunities to live a fulfilling life. UCP has touched the lives of many people in our community in a positive way and continues to provide quality service to anyone in need.

The Great!

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

When my daughter attended the inclusive daycare there was a boy in her infant room who could not walk, talk or feed himself and the parents were given little hope from doctors for improvement i saw this boy improve over the years he was able to feed himself and had learned to speak several words. The most moment us achievement was at their preschool graduation when he came onto the stage with a walker and walked to receive his diploma. There was not a dry eye in the house.

Ways to make it better...

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

The most difficult task with UCP Central PA is educating the public so that everyone knows that they help with all needs not only cerebral palsy. Every person who volunteers, works for or has received services from UCP has accepted this challenge and continues to promote the depth of this organization.

October 25, 2010

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October 25, 2010

UCP Central PA offers a wonderful variety of services that have benefited both of my children with autism. Sibshops is my 12 year olds favorite activity and he has been attending for 6 years. Their facility is beautiful and the family support service staff goes above and beyond to help their clients and families.

The Great!

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

UCP Central PA offers a wonderful variety of services that have benefited both of my children with autism. Sibshops is my 12 year olds favorite activity and he has been attending for 6 years. Their facility is beautiful and the family support service staff goes above and beyond to help their clients and families.

Ways to make it better...

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

expand their staff and facility size to allow them to provide for more families.

October 25, 2010

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October 25, 2010

I am a volunteer for the organization's annual golf fundraiser. As a member of the committee I help plan the details of the event and solicit for donations for the silent auction. I have donated goods and services to the annual golf and black tie fundraisers. UCP Central PA provides invaluable services to its community and I am proud to be a small part of helping make that happen. The organization was very understanding and flexible when I went through a career change and my availability for meetings changed.

The Great!

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

its inclusive day care program, Captial Area Children's Center, which my children attend.

Ways to make it better...

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

I can't think of any changes I would make.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)

Introduced me to new friends and business contacts.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

October 25, 2010

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October 25, 2010

I have been volunteering for UCP Central PA for over 5 years. I am an active member of the Magic Night Committee, which supports UCP Central PA's annual black tie fundraising effort. Through my involvement with the committee I was able to learn of the wonderful services the organization provides to children and individuals in our community. When our children were born my husband and I signed them up immediately for UCP Central PA’s inclusive day care facility (Capital Area Children’s Center). CACC provides a stimulating and nurturing environment for all of the children it serves.

The Great!

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

seeing the organization respond to the needs of the local community.

Ways to make it better...

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

find a way to teach more people in the community about the efforts of the organization and the resources it makes available.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)

Introduced me to more people in the community.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

October 22, 2010

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October 22, 2010

It is truly a blessing to have a healthy baby these days. And as a mother, you know when something just isn’t right with one of your children. Jacob was born on December 31, 1994. He had an older brother, so I had a benchmark of what to expect. Jacob wasn’t a typical happy baby. He didn’t smile a lot, had issues with food textures, didn’t sleep well, etc. As a toddler, it got worse. He didn’t develop speech, became somewhat aggressive, was very particular about his food, had many perseverative behaviors, etc. Jacob was diagnosed with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (on the autism spectrum) when he was about 2. Luckily, we caught it early and he was immediately enrolled in developmental, speech and occupational therapies. Then, our prayers were answered. I remember the first time I visited UCP of Central PA in Camp Hill, PA. The physical facilities were a child’s AND parent’s dream…so colorful, so inviting, and so conducive to everything they do there. I especially liked the 2-way windows where parents could observe without being seen. But those facilities were nothing compared to the Understanding Caring Professionals I met. I immediately knew this was where Jacob needed to be. He began in an inclusion preschool class, and boy, was he miserable! I remember observing him during most of my lunch hours. Specifically, I remember a time when Jacob would not stop crying. The teacher/developmental therapist had taken away one of his dinosaur toys. I couldn’t stand it! I went to the door and told her why he was crying. She knew why. She had taken 1 of his 2 dinosaurs because Jacob was a part of the class. He was not forced to participate in the art project at the time, but he had to have a hand available if he chose to participate. Tough love at its finest! What was next to impossible for me to do at home to keep peace in the house or even more difficult, outside of the house, was what this teacher did so easily. Being in the inclusion classroom gave him peer models, and he probably learned as much from them as from his therapists. And it worked. Jacob received occupational and speech therapy at UCP as well. His occupational therapist worked with him on his fine motor and sensory integration skills. He couldn’t tolerate being in a sandbox or touching gooey things. Now he buries himself in the sand at the beach! His speech therapist helped him progress from sounds, grunts and pointing to words, then sentences, then writing paragraphs. Admittedly, there are some days I wish he’d just stop talking! How did they do it? Hard work? Absolutely. Teamwork. No question. There are a lot of certified therapists out there, most of whom are probably wonderful. But at UCP of Central PA, I met professionals who loved and cared about Jacob so much that they were determined to see him succeed. By the time he graduated from the preschool program, he was one of the typical kids in the inclusion preschool. He had friends, laughed and was happy, all I ever really wanted. He transitioned to a private school and is now a sophomore in high school earning A’s and B’s, playing basketball and in Driver’s Ed! UCP of Central PA gave us so much HOPE. They were all a support system to Jacob and our family. We are FOREVER indebted to them, and continue to contribute financially and with anything we can do to promote them. Jacob, himself, has given back by volunteering at UCP’s Family Fun Fair. UCP of Central PA has helped make Jacob who he is today. How can I not be forever indebted?

The Great!

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

seeing my Jacob live as a typical teenager everyday.

Ways to make it better...

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

The only thing I could think of is to make more Eearly Intervention facilities like UCP of Central PA available!

October 21, 2010

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October 21, 2010

We became involved with UCP when our middle son was born with CP. Our son, Daniel, started receiving services at 6mos. of age. The therapists and staff were professional and considerate with not only Danny, but with each member of our family. The guided us through some very difficult times and taught us the realities of what life was going to be like for and with Danny. The staff was instrumental in referring us to specialist such as feeding clinics, schools and doctors. More importantly, they were always there for us. When Danny was hospitalized several times during the first three years he was being treated at UCP the staff would call and visit to see how he and all of us were doing. Even during his school years they have kept in touch to check on his status. I became involved in volunteering with UCP over six years ago. I feel proud to represent such a deserved organization that has such strong ties in the community. I never have a problem asking for help or donations because they are very well respected. I enjoy coming into the center to help because it is so wonderful to see all the children around. It is also heartwarming to see the diverse mix of children who are able to take advantage of UCP's services, whether it be just in daycare of therapies. Now that our son is 18, I look to UCP for the same guidance and experience that they gave to us when he was younger. At this age, Danny needs them now just as much if not more than he did when he was an infant. I feel very blessed to be associated with UCP and find their services invaluable.

The Great!

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

Our son Daniel

Ways to make it better...

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

Help them set up more services around the area for teenagers and young adults

October 21, 2010

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October 21, 2010

UCP has been there for my family for the past 3 1/2 years. They support us as a family - that's what makes them so special. From IEP meetings to sibling workshops to family fun festivals - we all feel included and have so many opportunities to meet other families in similar situations. We look forward to participating in these activities for many years to come.

The Great!

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

The way my children teach neighborhood kids about their brother's disability and the patience and understanding they have with each other and their brother. My oldest son went out of his way to help a little boy with a learning disability in the library instead of doing his own homework. Netwoking with other families.

Ways to make it better...

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

... volunteer more of my time to let people know what a great organization this is and that this is the first place you want to visit if a loved one is diagnosed with any disability.

October 18, 2010

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October 18, 2010

I have been volunteering for UCP Central PA for the past six years in various capacities. I help with special event set-up, implementation, and clean-up, and with various maintenance or office projects as necessary. The volunteers at UCP are an essential part of being able to make a large impact with a limited budget for extra staff. The culture at UCP is such that once you become part of the UCP family as a volunteer, you will have a desire to work to further the mission in whatever way possible. I have had the opportunity for the last three years to serve on the UCP/SchmidtKramer Golf Committee, and as a result have met some great people, and learned how the community can rally together even in tough economic times. I highly recommend UCP for volunteer opportunities whether you have one hour to give or ten.

The Great!

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

needs of individuals with disabilities in the local community are met based on their own interests and desires.

Ways to make it better...

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

do more community outreach related to the specific volunteer needs of the organization.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

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