Hoony was born with Down Syndrome and suffers from severe brain damage caused during his heart surgery when he was four months old. He was very fortunate to participate in Gwinnett County Special Education program that included a tremendous amount of social activities. A few examples of these activities would be going to the mall with friends or watching movies with classmates. These are activities that most of us do on a daily basis without thinking twice about it. This program fostered many special moments Hoony only got to enjoy for a very short period of time. We kept looking for an organization with a similar program, but due to the fact that Hoony is completely nonverbal, unable to use bathroom by himself, and self-injurious behaviors, organization that would accept him either offered poorly constructed programs or had a very low caregiver to students ratio ranging from 1:10 to 1:25.
Although we would be more than honored to be hard workers of the community, knowing Hoony would stay in a jail-like environment and receive the least amount of care, we simply could not walk away and head to our work after we dropped him off at the daycare center without tears running down our faces. We soon figured that majority of families with severely disabled individuals had to give up their careers due to similar situations. Will Hoony ever be able to enjoy his life with his friends again? Will his family members be given a chance to be hard workers again, striving to make the society better, knowing that Hoony stays happy while they cannot see him?
One Ministry, a nonprofit organization founded by parents with disabled children, is preparing a daycare center that would never deny those with severe disabilities. Our program will offer programs that are full of social activities where children can learn essential living skills while enjoying social interactions. Furthermore, we aim to provide a caregiver to student ratio from 1:1 to 1:3. One Ministry believes in one very simple thing: that everyone, even with those with disabilities, should be given the right to pursue happiness. We have been dreaming and fighting for what most of people take it as granted. Please help us to make our dream come true!