I am writing to respond to a letter to the editor that was published in the Havre Daily News Thursday, May 17, regarding teens in our community with disabilities who seem to be forgotten and left out.
At Quality Life Concepts we serve children with developmental disabilities or who are at risk of a disability of all ages, from birth to age 22 years. We are aware that opportunities for children with disabilities are limited in our community.
For a number of years, Quality Life Concepts offered an after-school program for high school and middle school students called Positive Peers. We planned fun parties and activities for kids in the community. HRDC, the bowling alley and 5th Avenue Christian Church youth center opened their facilities to our Positive Peers group. United Way and Walmart readily provided grant funding to support the program. We invited kids with and without disabilities to come together to enjoy a game of pool or play a board game, watch a movie, play miniature golf, bowl together and much more. We took the group fishing in the Bear Paws, swimming at Fresno and a digital scavenger hunting at the mall. For years we had a great group who met regularly.
Lack of volunteers to help us necessitated the discontinuation of the program last year. We would welcome anyone who has interest in volunteering to call us at 265-2620.
If a child is found to be ineligible for our services, it is our practice to assist the family by providing them with information about other resources in the community for which they may be eligible. There are a number of programs that are available if a child has physical disabilities but is not cognitively delayed. Tina Thomas, our intake coordinator, has that information available to anyone interested.