Featured Foundation: Giants Community Fund
As an organization promoting personal growth and self-sufficiency for individuals with disabilities, Via is committed to enhancing the personal safety of the children, teens and adults we serve and helping them avoid abusive situations. Unfortunately, studies have shown that youngsters with disabilities are subject to 3-4 times more abuse than their typically-developing peers, with some experts reporting a 70% incidence of abuse. Peer bullying represents a particularly troublesome component of that abuse.
Thanks to an exciting new partnership with the San Francisco Giants Community Fund, participants at Via West and Altitude are now enjoying developmentally-appropriate anti-bullying activities on campus and during community integration outings as part of a new Stand Up to Bullying! year-round program. Awarded in September as part of Strike Out Violence Day at AT&T Park, the $7,000 grant has allowed us to create a Giants-branded anti-bullying coloring book, develop posters to use during campfires, put on anti-bullying skits, and engage participants in making puppets to role play real-life situations that put them at risk for bullying. Everything learned on campus is reinforced during outings to inclusive venues such as Spina Farms and The Old Spaghetti Factory.
We’re already seeing great results, with participants sharing stories of bullying and demonstrating more effective ways to counteract bullying behaviors. Some parents have shared that their sons and daughters are bringing home the coloring books and talking about how they can use the information.