Giving Hope Foundation
The Giving Family Hope Center is being developed as a Community Wellness Center with the sole purpose of providing therapeutic support to families and friends of children and adults with disabilities. All needs will be accommodated regardless of age or condition.
The Giving Family Hope Center is NOT an institution or provider facility but a Community Wellness Center open 24.7 built to provide a place where the families and friends of children and adults with disabilities can garner therapeutic support, learn, develop, and socialize. The Center will offer transitional programs to children and adults, creating an easier integration into schools, workforce, and community.
The types of services that are currently planned for the Giving Family Hope Center include the following:
• Recreational Activities
• Respite Care Services
• Therapeutic Services
• Sensory Awareness
• Family Support Programs
We are working with Ball State University and reviewing the latest in technology and education advancements to create safe, peaceful, and individualized environments for each family as they participate in programs and activities at the Giving Family Hope Center.
The Founder of the Giving Hope Foundation, Joe Shetterley, understands first-hand the strain special needs loved one can have on a family. All members of the family may struggle at times to understand how to help and what to do. The idea of the Giving Family Hope Center was conceived as a place to provide hope as well as support and guidance for those families.
The Giving Hope Foundation began by raising awareness of the many challenges that families caring for loved ones with disabilities face. The development of the Foundation’s Giving Family Hope Center ensures those families have a supportive and safe place to build a stronger family.
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PLEASE READ AND SHARE JOE’S STORY:
My name is Joe.
Over two decades ago when my wife Lisa and I found out we were pregnant for the second time, my heart skipped a beat.
I already had a wonderfully funny and energetic 2 year old son. Imagine my joy to learn that we were about to have a baby girl.
We would name her Hanna.
Like most fathers, I dreamed of her in little pigtails and watching her grow into a star athlete like her mommy and eventually having the honor of walking her down the aisle.
But before her second birthday, it became apparent those dreams would start to shift.
I vividly remember the day the doctor told us Hanna’s diagnosis. Autism and Mild Intellectual Disability.
If he had stabbed me directly in my heart, it would have hurt less.
As I sat and watched the confusion and pain on my wife’s face, I began to feel as though I wasn’t in my own body anymore. It was just surreal. I know now that it was my brain’s way of dealing with the pain at the moment.
But, as those moments turned into days, I did not go back to embrace reality. Instead, I embraced denial, and lost myself in my work. One of my deepest and only regrets is allowing Lisa to face that challenge alone. The reality of Hanna’s condition really hit home when our family took a vacation to the beach. Again, I dreamed of the way I wanted it to be, how it should be… but, as you well know, if your child has been diagnosed with any neurological or cerebral disorder, the way you want things to be and the way they actually are, too often, are very different.
While other children were building sandcastles and chasing waves and squealing with glee, my Hanna was eating sand and crying endlessly for no apparent reason and staring off into space.
I can’t adequately articulate the pain that caused me. So much so, that I ended our vacation early.
Shortly after that experience, I was driving to work one morning. I became very acutely aware of the presence of God. He made it quite clear through a vision of what my mission in this life would be.
But the task seemed too great, impossible even.
And so I said no at first.
Hanna is 20 now. Lisa and I have since learned how to care for her needs together, and have had another son. The years have been cruel at times, almost destroying our marriage and our family, but God has bigger plans for us.
The vision God gave to me almost two decades ago has come to fruition very quickly over the past year. In an almost supernatural way, I have met people who are making this vision become reality. Business people.
Parents of similarly diagnosed children.
All of these unique personalities are being aligned at exactly the right time to bring about this organization.
We call it Giving Family Hope.
Giving Family Hope is a health care respite center where both diagnosed individuals and their families will receive the services, care and attention they so richly need and deserve.
Our vision is that it will be everything we wish we’d had 20 years ago… therapy services, advocacy, education, respite for parents and siblings. After all my family has been through, I have learned one thing. Sometimes we are given challenges because we have the strength and abilities to change them.
Other times we are given challenges so we ourselves can be changed. Being Hanna’ father has changed me.
And now it is my passion to create change for you.”