(From Blanchard Valley Center)
Blanchard Valley Center (Hancock County Board of Developmental Disabilities) will host a series of networking events that will be free and open to the public in 2024.
Nadine Weininger, with Blanchard Valley Center, says the first event of the series will be held Jan. 24, 5:30-6:30 p.m., at Blanchard Valley Center, 1700 E. Sandusky Street, Findlay. The topic will be, How did I get here and where do I go next? A panel of parents will discuss their journey of navigating life with a child who has a developmental disability.
Each event will include a 30-minute question-and-answer period, followed by an open house for networking with representatives from resource agencies.
“When we were working on our strategic plan and collecting feedback from stakeholders, we had parents, including board members, who said they wanted opportunities to network with families dealing with similar situations,” said Blanchard Valley Center Superintendent Kelli Grisham. “This gives them the chance to not only talk to other parents or caregivers, but to tap onto other resources, such as recommended doctors or facilities.”
Topics for additional networking events will include:
-Transition and Summer Work. This event will focus on young adults, ages 14-22, as they navigate life after post-secondary education.
-Special Ed 101. A parent panel will discuss their experiences working with local school districts, IEPs, and what involvement looks like.
The dates for the additional sessions are April 10 and August 14, respectively.
“We often hear that parents will receive a diagnosis for their child and don’t know where to turn,” Grisham said. “Understanding the world of developmental disabilities can sometimes be daunting. We want to invite families to these networking events to help in that process. It will give people an opportunity to communicate with a professional, and those with lived experience, in a relaxed environment.”