The special needs population — including the physically, intellectually and developmentally challenged — are often marginalized or excluded from the social life of the community. By providing activities for physical and social enrichment that focus on recreation, challenge, fun, and access to the outdoors, Shared Adventures helps individuals develop a healthy self-image, confidence and skills to move beyond imagined limitations and enjoy a life engaged in our community.
The community is also enriched by inclusion of this population. Our more than 50 activities per year help more than 1,000 special needs individuals and their families to achieve stable and healthy conditions, and integrate them in jobs and schools, leading to less institutionalization, crime and drug use, and family fragmentation.
The Big Idea 2022:
South County Inclusion
Shared Adventures has a large participant base in our County, but only receives a modest response from the Latinx disabled community. We plan to make an extraordinary effort to reach out to the Latinx community, to encourage participation in our activities, from sailing and horse-riding to game days and field trips.
We’ll hold more activities in South County: focus outreach toward multicultural agencies, schools and families; increase multicultural staff and volunteers; and use Spanish language media resources.
Shared Adventures was successful at adapting its programs during the pandemic to reduce social isolation. We had robust participation in a full calendar of events through Zoom (such as adaptive yoga and exercise classes, dance parties, bingo, book club, and arts and crafts), and will continue online activities.
Thank you so much for your kind welcome of my granddaughter Mira today at the archery range. It is not often she is so completely accepted and drawn into participatory activity. The archery built her self-confidence and she left feeling better about herself. Thank you for all the great things you have done for this community.
Helen S., Soquel