I have had the great privilege of Ben making presentations to our Church family (Faith Lutheran Church, Seguin, Texas) and to the clients of my agency (Caldwell County Adult Probation) over the years. Through his presentations, I have witnessed the heightened awareness, sensitive, and Christian compassion gained by Ben connecting with his audience. He has great skills as a speaker and educator. Marvel Maddox, Sept. 28, 2010, Seguin, Texas
I work at a camp that welcomes 4000+ campers every summer and thousands of retreaters throughout the year. For almost 30 years Ben has opened campers' eyes to his faith, to the gifts of folks with disabilities and to the work of giving equal opportunities for all whatever their abilities are. He's helped kids take others with disabilities out of their 'box'.
In my early work, as a counselor and program developer with the Regional Mental Health and Retardation Center in Grand Forks, N.D. I met Ben. I found him to be a determined and energetic young man with a vision to overcome the limitations of his cerebral palsy, some at a physical everyday level and others dictated by public and professional impressions. I soon realized that Ben had the intelligence and drive to make a real and positive impact in the field of developmental disabilities. Very soon he was making contact with groups and individuals in churches, schools and other locations. He provided encouragement to those with disabilities and their family members and provided education to professionals and to the general public. His message was one that helped open doors to persons with disabilities, while breaking through the stereotypes that many people held on to. One of the services he provided was his involvement in early ground work in setting up a drop-in center in Grand Forks, N.D. for people with disabilities. In a recent contact a professional in Grand Forks I learned that the drop-in center is still operating and doing well. After having contact with Ben and Dee, in recent years, I have seen the success that they have achieved. I have witnessed the positive impact they are having, with Ben's fellow members on the Governor's Rehabilitation Council in Madison, Wi; with Dee's fine assistance in organizational aspects; and with the respect they have garnered in northern Wisconsin. It is refreshing to see them respond to calls for their involvement in events throughout the country. This program is an important one and Ben and Dee have grown with the times, through taking the initiative to obtain the training and education they need to carry this out. They have worked as a team to provide a needed service.
Ben speaks with experience through his own journey. He is passionate in his support of and opening of doors for dis-abled folks. He has provided cousel for parents and direct support to young people. He is authentic in his presentations and displays his passion for advocacy for those with disabilities.
I hired this organizaton to come and speak to the community service providers and others about disability and what the impact really is for the individual and the family. The message delivered was clear, meaningful, and inspirational. Because they have actually walked in the shoes of disability they are able to speak in a strong and specific voice when talking about the needs, dreams and ambitions of individuals with disabilities.I have attended classes tought at other events by Ben and walked away with a deeper and more meaningful understandin of both my work and the child I am raising. (she also has a disability) The books written by Ben through Break Through Inc, have been a wonderful tool in the work in our community. Recently one of our schools adopted it as part of their curriculum!
I worked closely with Ben for the first ten years of Break Through Inc. As co-presenter or observer, I have seen him present on many occasions. He really "delivers the goods" in that he tells his story in a sometimes humorous, impactful, and spellbinding fashion, as other reviews will attest. While his work is helpful to all ages, his presentations appear to have a particularly strong effect with younger adults who have not heard the story of a person with a disability told so personally and dramatically. In addition, his insight-producing consulting and in-service presentations have helped adults learn how to work in more effective and respectful ways with persons with disabilities. He's an effective and dynamic professional in the field of disabilities education and training.
I work for a company that is a website for persons with disabilities. Last year I had the opportunity to meet, through our website, Ben and Dee Anderson and our organization purchased a few copies of his book to give out at our holiday giveaway. I also bought one for myself, because I was intrigued with his story and wanted to learn more. I was very moved by the book that I read and the journey this wonderful person had undertaken. I loved the fact that the book was written in such a manner that you felt you were almost just having a conversation with Ben about his experiences. Because of his "no airs" approach I really feel it is a story that anyone could relate to. You can't help but want to cheer Ben on through the obstacles that he has faced. I have the utmost respect for individuals who rise above adversity with this determined spirit to want to reach out and help others, and I only hope I am fortunate enough to meet Ben and Dee in person some day.
Greetings Breakthrough Ministry, It has been such a great blessing seeing your ministry grow and offer such an incredible service to individuals and churches/schools. You have simply taught me, that every human being plays a vital role in making this world a better place and that God uses all of us to bring His Kingdom to light in this world. Ben you have changed my family in a way that has given my four daughters a passion and heart for the physically challenged. One is in a full time profession with the physically/emotionally challenged because of your friendship. Keep up the fantastic work, David W. Saving, Executive Director Children's Christian Concern Society
In June of 2008, our oldest daughter (then 12) came home from a week at Camp Lutherhaven in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. She had learned a new word during her week away at camp: "disability." It's not that she was unfamiliar with the term, of course, but more that she'd never given it much thought. We have a close friend confined to a wheelchair, but as is the nature of children, our daughter always just sort of "accepted" the fact that our friend can't walk, and never looked further. But then she heard Mr. Ben Anderson of Break Through, Inc. speak at camp, and was deeply impressed by what was said. She talked about the presentation for weeks, and still mentions it to this day (two years later). The topic was reinforced by her camp counselor that year who used a walker, despite her young age. Our daughter came home with a much more mature understanding of human nature and the ability to see limitations as gifts and opportunities. I applaud Mr. Anderson’s efforts to increase awareness of the potential of those with disabilities by his campaign to teach those who may not have had much prior experience with disabilities.
It has been my pleasure to be associated with Break Through. Director Ben Anderson is able to be particularly helpful to everyone needing to know more about disability awareness. His presentations come from his own life experience as a person born with cerebral palsy. Ben's courageous perserverence in education accomplished a BS in Vocational Rehabilition, which puts him in a unique position to help our culture with understanding and direction.