Comforting As We Have Been Comforted
Today once again presented me with the awesome opportunity to encourage and provide resources to a mom of multiple special needs children. What a joy it is to my heart to be able to be here ready to respond to your calls and emails, because it is really you women who are my heroes. I humbly realize that God has given me the awesome ministry of encouraging you and equipping you for your calling as mothers home schooling your special needs children.
Both Leslie and I feel the same way about the role God has placed us in at Texas Home School Coalition (THSC). God has gifted us uniquely for the variety of ways that THSC envisions ministering to your families, and we both feel extremely blessed sharing those gifts and our past (and current) experiences in home schooling our own special needs children.
For these reasons, 2 Corinthians 1:3-5 has become the THSC motto for the 2015 home school conference season:
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ.
Yes, we understand the needs that you have, the struggles you face, the doubts with which you wrestle, and the tension you feel as you try to fill the many different–and all taxing–roles of being a mother and teacher of your special needs children while trying to keep your identity as a wife, sister, daughter, and especially a child of God. Likewise, the THSC board is empathetic to your needs.
Did you know that THSC in conjunction with Leslie Stevens, your own special needs consultant, were the first in the country to design a respite program for parents of special needs children? This program, Special Buddies (SB), provides these parents the full benefits of their home school convention while they attend sessions, without having to worry about their child or getting care for him or her. This July, Special Buddies will celebrate its 8th year in The Woodlands!
Special Buddies continues successfully because it offers services you desire for your children. For your kids, the program provides a setting that specifically meets each individual on his or her cognitive level with a 1:1 ratio of care and has NO AGE LIMIT. At each THSC Convention your Special Buddies program entails the following:
- Full two-day program
- Bible lessons
- Praise & worship
- Arts & crafts
- Fellowship time
Parents have shared great responses about the program. Here is one:
For any of you who were not sure if you wanted to have your kids participate in the Special Buddies program at the THSC Convention . . . well let me tell you they far exceeded my expectations while watching my little guy. They were amazing! They were super prepared for the needs of the kids and for making the parents comfortable with leaving their kids. My guy was so very spoiled and loved on that he has had to adjust to not having as much attention yesterday and today. I won’t even hesitate signing him up next year. Thank you THSC for ministering to families with kids who have unique needs!
– SB Parent
The special needs kids are not the only ones to whom THSC wants to minister; they also want to minister to your unique needs, Mom and Dad. To do that, this year there are not only a variety of speakers and vendors who are dedicated to helping train and equip you to teach your special needs children, but THSC will also be sponsoring a few additional encouragement venues for those of you who want on-site consultations and/or time to fellowship with other parents of special needs children.
To accomplish these goals, we have added two new services for your families:
- The THSC Special Needs staff will be hosting a booth in the vendor hall (near the THSC booth) where I will be scheduling one-on-one consultations as well as answering general questions for those who stop by and want to chat.
- Your convention program will also highlight a special needs fellowship time that is being specifically planned to encourage you and connect you with one another as you get ready to start planning your upcoming home school year.
So make sure to stop by our booth and join in on the fellowship session that has been planned specifically for you.
Please read more information about our Special Buddies program and allow us to offer you comfort as God has called us. Please note that space is limited for this program, so make your reservations soon if you would like your child to participate.
If you would like to schedule an on-site consultation at the convention, please feel free to fill out our Special Needs Consultation Form with your name, email and cell number. Please include your preferred time for appointment, and a general idea of what you would like to discuss in the comment box. We will confirm that appointment in a return email.
Leslie and I are extremely excited with how God is working in this ministry and we can’t wait to see you in July at the THSC Convention in The Woodlands and to offer our services to you over the 2015 – 2016 school year ahead.