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2017 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Family To Family Network

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Civil Rights, Disabilities, Disabled Persons Rights, Education, Educational Services, Family Services, Human Services

Mission: Creating success for children with disabilities by empowering their families with information, referrals, training and support as they navigate the complex education, health care, and social service systems.

Results: As of 6/30/17 - Over 1300 persons made email, phone or online requests for information on the special education process (38%), finding resources in the community (26%), information on how to navigate the adult service system (21%) or had other areas of need for information & support (13%). There are over 2000 individuals receiving our monthly e-newsletter of family events, training opportunities or support groups. Attended 29 community resource fair events where F2F spoke to over 1600 individuals. Held a conference event as well as provided training in the community to over 900. Provided many social opportunities to approx. 400 family members. Represented families on a number of Texas Education Agency stakeholder committees at the state level and the local Harris Center for Mental Health and Intellectual & Developmental Disabilities (IDD) IDD-Project Advisory Committee. Held a Legislative Forum in collaboration with the Arc of Greater Houston before the 85th Legislative Session.

Target demographics: Families with children with disabilities or chronic illness

Direct beneficiaries per year: 2781

Geographic areas served: Greater Houston Area

Programs: Information & Referral; Texas Project FIRST, Educational events (workshops & conferences) , Guided Transition program, Leadership & Advocacy, & family events

Community Stories

68 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Susan509

Client Served

Rating: 5

After the flooding subsided in Houston, Family to Family reached out to see if there was anything they could do to help our two special needs girls. With the Help of an organization in Ohio called The Make It Fit Foundation, each of the girls received a lovely weighted blanket. Both girls were traumatized at having to evacuate our home for a night and are currently terrified at any sign of rain or thunder in the area. This was a wonderful gesture by very caring individuals in Texas and Ohio! Brook is 6 and has cerebral palsy, epilepsy and intellectual disabilities - she is she one under the dino blanket. Skyler is 11 and she is high functioning autistic with ADHD, she is the one smiling for the cameras.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Over the years Family to Family Network has provided so much support to families in Texas affected by disability. Many years ago, my world was changed as I was honored to participate in their Disability Leadership program. It changed my views on the potential roles of people with disabilities in all walks of life and made me realize I needed to view my son, and so many others, through the same lens we view all people -- with a focus on what they can do and the supports they might need to live a fulfilling life of purpose.

We have had many bumps in the road, most recently being displaced from our home by floodwaters of Hurricane Harvey. Again, F2F was there for us providing direct support as well as vital guidance and emotional support. Certainly my son's trauma has been made less due to the generous help of F2F and their partners in the Hurricane Harvey recovery.

I strongly endorse Family to Family Network as an organization that leverages all their resources to provide maximum benefit to Texans with disabilities.

I am including a recent picture of my son with autism enjoying some of the items provided by F2F and their partners to alleviate stress. As you can see, he is pleased!

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

As a board member of both local and national level autism advocacy organizations, for years I have referred parents to Family to Family Network for help navigating special ed in Texas' public schools, and many other topics important to families of children with disabilities. They are unquestionably one of the most cost efficient, effective, family-friendly non-profits in Texas. Even though I've been at the advocacy game for a long time, I call on them periodically for issues related to my son with autism as he gets older and we face new challenges.

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Client Served

Rating: 5

This group was an amazing resource of help and support for the special needs community during and after Hurricane Harvey. There was a lot of help and donations pouring into our area but Family-to-Family made certain that our children and families with special needs were not forgotten! God Bless them

Client Served

Rating: 5

Received the best help from Leslie Lawson at F2F. They have been readily available for me and my son's need.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have two special needs grandchildren. Skyler is 11 years old with autism and ADHD. Brook is 6 with cerebral palsy, epilepsy and intellectual disability. Family to Family network made tickets to Lil Rustler available to both girls in 2016 and they had a wonderful time at the kids rodeo with their assigned cowboys and then we went to the actual rodeo and concert that evening. It was a wonderful night out and a true break for my daughter to be able to just sit and enjoy what the girls were doing. In 2017 Skyler had aged out of Lil Rustlers, but Family to Family again sent tickets for all of u and we went and watched Brook at the little kids rodeo and then went to the actual rodeo and concert. Brook loved her cowboy and all the special kid events and Skyler had an amazing time at the concert. Family to Family is a wonderful organization that made all of this possible and all of their people are very kind in dealing with the kids and parents.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Family To Family is a valuable resource for my family! I am so thankful for the volunteers who share their stories and train and guide us parents on this journey of parenting a child with special needs. I tell so many parents about this great organization and how they want to help us parents navigate the school years and transition to adulthood.
-Parent

Client Served

Rating: 5

I had the questions for my son's ARD meeting and called Family to family network. They helped me clear the issue, emailed me the sample letters. It is great help for me to advocate for my son.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Family to Family Network provides much needed support for us, parents and caregivers, navigating this marathon life of parenting a child with special needs. I am always greeted with a warm welcome and a listening ear. Their own personal experiences make the training sessions very informative and helpful as I navigate transition planning for my 15 year old daughter. Many thanks to these wonderful people!!

Sherri36

Client Served

Rating: 5

This group is wonderful. Always providing information and opportunities for parents to learn about their child's uniqueness or disability. Extremely helpful with answers to your questions. Thank you F2F Network!

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

These guys put on the best programs to help with children with disabilities and their families. I attended a program about social security and it was very helpful. Please donate and keep their program going.

Comments ( 1 )

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FamilytoFamilyNetwork 05/18/2016

Thank you so much! Keep attending those training programs - Knowledge is power!

Kellybelly25

Client Served

Rating: 5

F2F has been a great resource for our daughter in advocating for public school, participate in local community events & very helpful resources.

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

F2F has been a great resource of information & advisors who are knowledgable to make arents feel at ease when having to prepare for ARD's. the staff is very friendly, helpful, follows up with information as promised. I would recommend this organization to other parents.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Since the moment I moved to Houston, Leslie had been great help for me in identifying resources . I could trace Autism resources, schools information and attorney for guardianship easily with their help.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

It was an outstanding experience! Leslie got back to me and answered all of my questions to the fullest within the hour. In addition, she sent a follow up e-mail with links to various community resources. She asked me to call back with any question after reviewing it. They are friendly, extremely knowledgeable, and very eager to help! I have nothing, but positive things to say about this organization.

Comments ( 1 )

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FamilytoFamilyNetwork 05/18/2016

Leslie is such an asset! Thank you so much!

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have attended F2F conferences and trainings throughout the years, and their website Texas Project First, http://texasprojectfirst.org/, has INVALUABLE information about special education services, events, and resources. What I most appreciate about Family to Family Network is there personal attention and assistance! When I desperately needed guidance to keep my son with down syndrome included in the classroom and receiving the services he needed, they sat down and walked me through laws, made calls to district personnel, and encouraged me knowing that they had "been there done that!" Hard working, dedicated, and great asset to our community! VERY GRATEFUL for their services!!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Can't say enough wonderful things about Family to Family Network. Leslie Lawson, with Family to Family, returned my e-mail immediately. She helped me over the phone for almost an hour, continued to do research on her own, found answers/resources and called me back all in the same day. What a blessing to have an entity that helps you to understand and navigate the world of special needs.

Comments ( 1 )

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FamilytoFamilyNetwork 10/30/2015

Thank you so much - Leslie is wonderful!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

The staff at Family to Family Network have been extremely helpful to me in navigating the special education system in Texas. I have attended many of their conferences as well and the knowledge I have gained has helped me be a better advocate for my son and for others with disabilities. I am especially thankful for their strong belief in person centered thinking and valuing each person. Their guidance has changed the course of my son's future !

Comments ( 1 )

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FamilytoFamilyNetwork 10/30/2015

Thank you for acknowledging the importance of valuing all people with disabilities!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Family to Family Network is by far the BEST resource for current and accurate information on all things relating to disability. I have depended on them to learn from the time my son was a toddler, and he is now an adult. The workshops on how to be a POSITIVE advocate for your child is priceless. Learning the best ways to PARTNER with your school is essential and they offer so many workshops from ARD info and legislative issues and beyond. I have called them so many times with a question and they either know the answer immediately, or work to find out! They are so knowledgable about other resources for referral as well. My child had an awesome INCLUSIVE public school experience that I credit to the things I learned from F2F. I am so grateful for this wonderful organization that works tirelessly to improve the lives of those with disabilities.

Comments ( 1 )

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FamilytoFamilyNetwork 10/30/2015

Thank you - we are glad you learned to partner with your school and make Inclusion happen!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Without the help from Family to Family Network, I would not have been able to navigate the special education maze and be an advocate for my son. Now at 15, he is a vital part of his own education AND his community, thanks to the information and support from F2F.

Comments ( 1 )

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FamilytoFamilyNetwork 10/30/2015

Thank you for making sure your son is part of his IEP meeting!

Client Served

Rating: 5

It is nice to find great people that understand your situation and that can Guide you every time.
Thanks,
Pilar Hixson

Comments ( 1 )

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FamilytoFamilyNetwork 10/30/2015

Thank you Pilar!

Client Served

Rating: 5

Family to Family has always been there to answer my phone calls and provide the best information resources available to help me plan and provide for my disabled son. With their help I have felt confident in decisions I had to make and emboldened in advocating for my son. They have provided information for resources I never new existed and even helped me to improvise creating new resources. I have met up with, and found great friends who share similar situations with my family, and through them my son has found friendships with other kids who share some of the same struggles.

Helping your disabled child takes an emotional toll and can cloud your perceptions. I highly recommend to anyone with a disabled child to take advantage of all they have to offer. It's so important to have objective trustworthy help when dealing with public, governmental and even private agencies. These people have been and continue to be, where you are at.

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

After being pulled from public school and home schooled for several years. my son with autism was ready to integrate with the world again. F2F helped me with critical information about our rights, state and district policy and law in order to get him correctly and happily integrated into 12th grade, credits in check to graduate, and into the work based learning program he needed. They helped him with self advocacy training. They helped me with the IEP/ARD process. They have continued to help our family with important information about relevant issues we continually have to deal with, like Social Security, Gaurdianship, Medicaid Waiver programs and State Agencies. Because of the personal stakes they have in the outcome of their own children with disabilities, they are constantly tuned into the issues that will affect my childs outcome. I know I can trust the information they provide to us without worry of another agenda. They are an invaluable resource for empathetic and knowledgeable information and help.

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Client Served

Rating: 5

Family to Family helped tremendously in changing the treatment of Life Skills students in my school
district. The Director helped me personally in so many ways. She helped me write and substantiate
my objections to then current school practices. More importantly, with the help of the TEA, she helped
change them for future students in the District. This organization is wonderful!

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

Family to Family is THE BEST. The Seminars that they offer are most
informative and professionally given.

As far a personal help with my sons and their school; I cannot say
enough good things about the organization and all who are a part of
it.

I have struggled for years to get my son's high school to hear my
grievances and struggles with their system. F2F help me write complaints to TEC with examples and regulations violated. I now
feel I have a real chance of being heard and changing their system.
I am eternally grateful for all that F2F does to educate and inform
parents.