Those with special needs deserve your support on levy

Those with special needs deserve your support on levy

Letter to the Editor:

When you are a parent of a child with special needs, undoubtedly you have bigger challenges to overcome than what you ever thought you would. There were many days where we felt very alone and struggled to understand “why us?”

We still remember the words “your son has autism.” Those were the most devastating four words we heard when our son, Charlie, was 18 months old. Our “normal” family was no longer normal. We went through all the possible emotions imaginable. Our weeks were filled with doctor’s appointments and various therapies as we wanted our son to have the most normal life and normal opportunities possible.

When Charlie began school at the Holmes County Board of Developmental Disabilities (Training Center), it was like we had found the missing piece in the puzzle of autism.

The first few years of Charlie’s schooling were very challenging. From the moment he boarded the bus, it was difficult. However, what we encountered at the Training Center was so much more than what we were expecting.

Of course Charlie received the therapies he needed, but what made the biggest difference in his life, and ours, was the teachers, the staff and every person that has come into Charlie’s life. Since that first day, they were so caring toward Charlie and our goals for him. Charlie is now 16 years old, he loves school and the people who make the Training Center the caring and loving place it is today.

We could write a book on how the Training Center has helped us, but today we are writing on behalf of them. You see Charlie is just one of the 300 individuals and families that benefit from these services.

During the next few weeks, you have an opportunity to help the Holmes County Board of Developmental Disabilities keep on functioning as they do today. If you haven’t already voted, we ask you to request an “absentee ballot request form” from the Ohio Secretary of State’s website.

After you print and complete the form, mail it to the Holmes County Board of Elections and wait for your ballot to arrive in the mail. When you receive your ballot, please vote for the Holmes County levy for developmental disability services, a 2.5-mill renewal with an additional 1.25 mills. Your vote will provide the support so many families desperately need and must be postmarked by April 27 to count!

We thank you with all of our hearts for your care and understanding of the plight of families with special needs.

Jeff and Tatiana Wilkins


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