Since we moved to Florida, Riley has started receiving PT and ST through the pediatric clinic at our local ARC. Our branch includes programs for both adults and children with developmental disabilities. For adults, they run group homes, a day program, as well as work sites. And for kids, they run a pediatric therapy clinic. When we lived in this area 7 years ago, I worked at the therapy clinic so now we are back there on the receiving end of services.

Last night the ARC held their annual Christmas Gala fundraiser. They had a formal dinner with a silent and a live auction. Over 400 local guests attended, including the mayor, several congressman and state representatives, as well as Miss USA. Our family was asked to speak at the event and share Riley’s inspirational story. We went on stage right before the live auction and told everyone about how far Riley has come. From the 4 lbs, 5 oz fragile little baby, she is now walking independently, using sign language effectively, and acting in so many ways like a typical 2 year old. After speaking, the auctioneer returned to the stage and asked whoever was willing to donate $400, which is one month of therapy, to raise their paddles. In a matter for 10 minutes, we inspired $100,000 in donations for the center!!! Last year, they raised $35,000 during this portion of the evening and that was a record. Their goal for last night was $40,000. Well, Riley blew people away with her story and the results are still so unbelievable!

Our kids are amazing, they all have such inspiring stories to tell. We are so blessed to be a part of this community and so honored that we were able to share our story last night. So many families will benefit from these generous donations. What an amazing way to start the Christmas season!

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7 Responses to Riley inspired GREATNESS

  1. Laurie says:

    Amazing and Inspirational. Riley is an inspiration to us, too~ every day I pray that Kaylee shows the same kind of progress that Riley has made over the years. Thank you for sharing your feel-good story, and congratulations to the ARC for such a wonderful, successful event!

  2. Kristy says:

    Hannah, I have tears of happiness after reading this. How very inspiring. I am so glad that you were able to share Riley’s story and helped to raise so much money for the ARC. You and Riley are both inspirations for me. XOXO

  3. Heather says:

    Again, this is just amazing! It’s always encouraging to hear about the generosity of others, and to know that you and Riley helped tunnel that towards something so beneficial to so many children is very inspiring indeed. You’ve really set the bar high for next year’s speaker. You might have to be a reuglar!

  4. KevinO says:

    $100,000??? Wow. Wonder if we can get that much during next years halloween costume contest.

  5. Kristen says:

    Hannah – you and Riley are both amazing. It is so awesome that you shared her story – there and here. People need to remember how important therapy is to all people with delays – and you two are a great team to deliver that message. I’m so proud to say you are my friend. Kristen (and Alexander.)

  6. LeeAnn says:

    That is so inspiring, I’m sure you were so proud to overcome your anxiety of speaking in public too, that is a great feeling to stretch ourselves for our kids and have it turn out so amazing! You should reply to Kevin’s email request for volunteers for parent profiles, I would love to hear more about your family and your perspective as a whs mom!

  7. Letty says:

    I know this is late, but I think that is wonderful!

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