Providence Center, a non-profit organization that serves adults with developmental disabilities, announced today that it has received a $24,500 grant from the Civitan Foundation for Children with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities – Chesapeake District Civitan International Inc. The grant was presented by the Annapolis Civitan Club at its bimonthly meeting on Thursday, May 16, 2013. The grant is for the purchase of sensory room equipment for Providence Center’s Jean Bradbury Building in Arnold, which is currently being renovated to make it a state-of-the-art program site for adults with developmental disabilities.
The grant was awarded with the support of and contributions from the Glen Burnie Civitan Club and Annapolis Civitan Club. It will be used to purchase equipment that benefits Providence Center’s participants that are non ambulatory, seniors with dementia, and those with autism, among other users. The Civitans also provided the sensory room equipment for the organization’s clients at its Cloverleaf site in Millersville.
Providence Center CEO Chuck Coble released the following statement:
“We are humbled by the funding from the Civitans, who continually demonstrate their dedication to improving our communities,” Coble said. “Providence Center is grateful to the Glen Burnie Civitan Club and the Annapolis Civitan Club for their tremendous support of the important work we do. This grant wouldn’t have been possible without them. The Civitans do so much good in our communities and we are proud to work hand-in-hand with them to help those that need it most.”
Annapolis Civitan Michael Ragland, Esq. said that the grant is in line with the mission of the Civitan organization. “For over 85 years the Annapolis Civitan Club #177 has been helping its community by bringing together ‘good citizens’ to improve the lives of our neighbors. For over 20 years the Club has directed its efforts to those with developmental disabilities. The Foundation for Children with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities – Chesapeake District Civitan International, Inc. has helped make great strides in understanding and caring for people with developmental disabilities. We at the Annapolis Civitan Club #177 are grateful for the support of the Foundation in providing to Providence Center the equipment to make a meaningful improvement in the lives of those cared for by the organization. This furthers our hope of a better world through Civitan.”
Glen Burnie Civitan President Suzy Provine added, “The Glen Burnie Civitan Club has a special place in our hearts for organizations working to improve the lives of those with developmental disabilities. This grant will do just that, by providing cutting-edge technology to support the extraordinary individuals that Providence Center serves each day. We are grateful for their work and proud to support them with this funding.”
Sensory rooms are a proven therapeutic and educational tool for those with disabilities. They assist those that are most vulnerable, non-verbal, and/or non-ambulatory. The technology provides cutting edge therapy to greatly enhance the ability to feel, see, and experience the world as well as make choices for themselves which they often are not able to do. It is a multi-sensory environment that uses fiber optic lights, sounds, textures, and aromas to exercise one’s senses to their fullest potential. It also provides a place to relax. This is especially important for those who are over-stimulated or wheelchair bound.
In 2008, the Civitans funded a similar sensory room at Providence Center’s Millersville location. The organization reported the positive changes in behavior, improved task concentration, and an increase in a variety of skills such as awareness of self, social interaction behaviors, communication, and exploration and manipulation of stimuli in those clients that regularly use the equipment.
The Jean Bradbury site has more than 80 participants with autism, visual impairments, cerebral palsy, hypersensitive disorders, and challenging behaviors that will benefit from the sensory room.
Providence Center, a non-profit organization based in Anne Arundel County, operates four program sites which provide care and training in programs such as Supported Employment, Horticulture, Woodshop, and Pottery throughout the county. It meets the growing needs of nearly 500 individuals through an array of services and supports, including medical, job preparedness and training, mentoring, production, employment coaching, senior care, and day habilitation.
The mission of Providence Center is to provide services that allow individuals with disabilities to enjoy increased self-determination in leading a more independent, valuable and functioning role in society. These support services are individually designed and professionally managed to enable these individuals to exercise higher levels of control over their lives.