Communities Foundation of Oklahoma Blog

rss

Communities Foundation of Oklahoma


 

South Central Industries (SCI) was established in Shawnee in 1981 to provide vocational training, employment opportunities and residential daily living services to individuals with developmental disabilities. Although SCI currently serves over 50 clients there are many individuals and their families who are still underserved or unserved all together. As of 2017 there were 7,609 developmentally challenged individuals on the Oklahoma waiting list for assistance. In Pottawatomie County there are over 175 handicapped and disabled individuals on the waiting list in need of housing, habilitation training and daily programming assistance. SCI would like to be able to accept more clients and place these individuals in vocations that will provide them with purpose, social outlets, a profitable paycheck, benefits including retirement and provide their families respite, resources and support. The year 2017 saw a dramatic cut in funding from the Department of Oklahoma for programs like SCI. Many disabled individuals were placed in jeopardy of losing their housing, jobs, medical providers and social networks. In order to continue serving current clients and to work toward meeting the need of the under and unserved population, SCI identified the need to diversify its funding sources. As a model social entrepreneur focused on meeting a social need through sustainable revenue streams, SCI’s goal is to expand its revenue producing ventures by marketing to a wider customer base with new product offerings which in addition to a healthier more secure bottom line will also mean more job opportunities for clients. SCI has already made an annual investment of over $72,000/annually in hiring a full time Marketing and Community Relations Coordinator and a Product Development/Customer Development Coordinator. These positions’ main job objectives are educating local and State private businesses about the benefits of SCI, expanding product lines, improving customer service, increasing community social awareness and enhancing SCI’s image through rebranding of logo, marketing materials, videos, messaging, website and creating a campus feel on the four city blocks that SCI occupies through external building repairs and coordinated paint facades. Having community support and understanding is paramount in continuing SCI’s work to raise awareness about developmental disabilities. SCI wants to change the adage, “Don’t stare that is rude," to “Look, Listen, Learn and Lend-a-hand." SCI wants to help break societal barriers that have caused isolation for many of our clients. Acquisition of a strategically placed warehouse (10,000 sq ft for $175,000 w/dock and heat & air) will also allow for product and customer growth and expansion of job opportunities and increased sustainability. Having community support and understanding is paramount in continuing SCI’s work to raise awareness about developmental disabilities. The Anderson Foundation from Austin, Texas, has recently issued a $40,000 matching grant to help toward this purchase.With your assistance and support, SCI will be a trendsetter in this industry as together we set the standard of possibilities for this demographic who seldom gets the recognition for their heroic achievements and desires to be just like you and me.

 

For more information about South Central Industries, South Central Group Homes, this matching grant project or the business opportunities South Central offers in order to sustain its mission, please contact:
Tina Hanna, Executive Director  |  405-275-3851  |  tina@southcentralind.com


By Communities Foundation of Oklahoma / November 28, 2017

Thank you for helping the Regional Food Bank provide nutritious meals for hungry Oklahomans. Your support will ensure our community’s most vulnerable children, families and seniors have access to vital, healthy food this fall and all year long.

And thanks to a special $600,000 holiday matching challenge from APMEX.com, the Cresap Family Foundation, and Chesapeake Energy Corporation, all gifts made to the Regional Food Bank between now and January 15 will DOUBLE to provide twice as many meals for our hungry neighbors, until we reach a matched total of $1.2 million. That’s enough to provide 6 million meals to our hungry neighbors!

learn more and make a donation 



By Communities Foundation of Oklahoma / November 17, 2017
Pets Helping People, founded in 2009, provides incarcerated women with the skills they need for a lucrative career in the pet industry. Women learn to become a certified kennel tech, bather/brusher, groomer or office manager. Since our founding, nearly 200 women have graduated and 93% are still working in the grooming industry. Graduates earn certificates through the International Professional Groomers Association to ensure they are qualified for jobs. Today, 93% of our graduates are still working in the grooming industry. Certified pet care workers can earn nearly $30,000 their first year alone, which only increases over time.

The self-sufficiency and pride that comes with employment makes a difference: The Oklahoma Department of Corrections reports the state recidivism rate for women is 13.3%, yet among our graduates, it is less than five percent! The Oklahoma Department of Corrections and Oklahoma Career Tech have publicly praised PHP as the "best program of its kind" because it is proving to reduce recidivism rates. PHP is helping end the inter-generational cycle of poverty and incarceration that has become all too common in Oklahoma.

Learn More: www.Muddy-Paws.org


By Communities Foundation of Oklahoma / October 17, 2017

Provide-A-Ride, a program designed, implemented and managed by RSVP of Central Oklahoma since 1995, ensures low-income elderly persons have safe, reliable and free transportation to and from their medical appointments.  RSVP volunteer drivers utilize their own vehicles to provide one-on-one, door-through-door support for seniors who are no longer able to drive.  Since its inception, over 300 RSVP Provide-A-Ride volunteer drivers have provided 130,700 rides to 5,404 elderly persons who live in Oklahoma County.

For more information http://rsvpokc.org/


By Randy Macon / April 3, 2017


Over Spring Break, twenty-two campers, six counselors and several Cavett Kids volunteers and staff traveled to Colorado to attend the Ski Camp for teens disabled by cancer, either through amputation or by involvement of muscle tissue.  Each March, the campers receive special instruction and equipment for four days in Winter Park, Colorado, at one of the world’s largest programs for disabled skiers – National Sports Center for the Disabled (NSCD).  During this outing, Campers work together to overcome their physical disabilities.

Above and beyond our Ski Camp, we also know that summer camp season is just around the corner, and children in communities across Oklahoma gear up for fishing, swimming, sleepovers, and playing baseball.  In those same communities live hundreds of ordinary children living through extraordinary medical challenges; children who too often have to watch while others play, walk while others run, and hope for a time when illness no longer limits their opportunities to have a good time.

The Cavett Kids Foundation (CKF) was founded to ensure that Oklahoma’s chronically and seriously ill children have the same access to outdoor fun as healthy kids. Many children in treatment miss out on typical character-building opportunities - things like Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, team sports, even after-school activities - due to illness.  CKF camps and events provide the opportunity to experience childhood the way it is supposed to be lived, with hands in the dirt, and a worm on the hook.  CKF camps and programs allow these kids to establish an identity away from the treatment room and hospital, to instill confidence while creating connections.  This is the Cavett Kids’ experience – reminding campers their illness does not have to limit their ability to have a full life.

It is the hard work of dedicated volunteers – from dialysis nurses that keep bedside vigil each night to the local fisherman who come back every year just for fun – that makes these camps happen, ensuring both a good time for the kids and a continuum of specialized care.  Knowing that their children are safe and happy, parents have the rare opportunity to relax and enjoy their temporary respite from daily caretaking duties.

 

Over the years, donors have generously given of their time in a plethora of activities such as  taking kids fishing and tubing during Camp Cavett (children with a variety of life-threatening illness), white water rafting at Heart Camp (teens with congenital heart disease), skiing at Ski Camp (campers affected by muscle loss or amputations due to cancer), shooting clay pigeons at Leadership Camp (campers with exceptional leadership qualities), leading archery at Camp Wildfire (spina bifida, cerebral palsy and PKU patients), dancing the night away at Kamp Courage (kidney/spina bifida/diabetes), and teaching older campers life lessons at Transitions Camp (campers striving to succeed at adult life)  These camps have significantly contributed to making a life changing impact on these campers’ lives. 

 

“Camp Cavett has allowed me to finally put the puzzle pieces together.  Going through chemotherapy and experiencing cancer leaves us all confused – with a lot of unanswered questions and loose ends.  At camp, we relate to each other – and we are the only people in the world that can improve each other based on each individual’s personal struggles and experiences.  We live such different lives from the rest of the world.  When we come to camp, for once, we’re normal.”  - Paige (Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma). 

 Outside of volunteering time, others have generously given and raised thousands of dollars so that these special children can enjoy camps free of charge. These camps and events are not possible without the extreme generosity of private donations. The Oklahoma community has become a mountain of support for Cavett Kids Foundation and its many campers.  

  Cavett Kids Foundation - Three C’s:

  1.  Teach Coping Skills in a nurturing, fun environment;
  2.  Build Character by reinforcing positive expectations and encouraging personal growth;
  3.  Establish meaningful Connections between children who often feel isolated from their peers.

 These are the “Three C’s” that the Cavett Kids Foundation strives to instill in every camper – the cornerstone of the Cavett Kids’ philosophy, and the main reason that Cavett Kids’ events so often become a transformative experience for both campers and volunteers. 

 What started with one camp and a dream has now become six camps serving over 400 children with various life-threatening and chronic illnesses each year.  The diagnoses may differ – leukemia, heart disease, cystic fibrosis, Crohn’s disease to name just a few – and the treatments and outcomes may vary, but a common experience links all campers, creating a unique environment where children hear stories that sound remarkably like their own.  For many, camp is the only place where these children feel truly understood, where they never feel left out.   Cavett Kids also helps over 12,000 children and their families through a partnership with University of Oklahoma Physicians called Diversionary Play. 

 Camp fosters independence and self-sufficiency; it creates a sense of being able to do normal things while dealing with extraordinary challenges.  In the process, support systems are formed, friendships that campers can rely on long after camp is over and the hardships of normal life have resumed.  Children feel it and parents see it.  Children come home, tired but happy, fortified by fun and sunshine, excited about the challenges they faced and the friendships they made, instilled with newfound feelings of independence, and – most important of all – proud of themselves and all that they accomplished.  When Cavett Kids go back to school in the fall, they’ll have their own camp stories to tell - just another ordinary summer camp experience in the Oklahoma sunshine.  Isn’t that extraordinary?

             Cavett Kids Foundation: "Where illness does not define the child."  

learn more cavettkids.org


Share this page

2932 NW 122nd Street Suite D, Oklahoma City, OK 73120   (405) 488-1450   (877) 689-7726   Email us

Give Now   Enews Signup