I’m not sure when or how the idea of a town hall meeting first came to me. I know I was feeling overwhelmed and wondering how I could make sure I covered everything.
I recall thinking “if it takes a village to raise a child, why am I so exhausted?” I think my next thought was “time to call a town hall meeting!” I laughed about it, but as I started to mull it over, I realized I was on to something. We have a lot of wonderful friends and family who love the Princess and want only the best for her. People have often told me to call them if she needs anything. Of course, I never really took them up on it, after all, we are all busy, right?
But I realized that I had to swallow my pride and for her sake, ask for help. It made it a bit easier to think about it in terms of asking for help for the Princess, rather than asking for help for myself. Oh pride, what a nasty master you are!!
I got on Facebook and set up an event. I invited all the people I could think of who might be interested in helping her. People started responding saying they would love to come. That is when I started to panic a bit. What would I say to them? What type of help could I ask them for? What was the plan? Why didn’t I have everything all figured out?
One thing that helped me was completing a portion of the requirements for PDD funding. They need families to write out goals that they have for their child. Maybe this would help guide the discussion at the town hall meeting.
I started out by writing down the number one goal that was on my list – keeping the Princeess safe. Medically safe because of her diabetes, but also physically safe because of her trusting nature.These goals took about 10 minutes to type up. Not because I am a fast thinker, but because I have had 18 years to think about what I want for my daughter, and what a successful life could look like for her.
These are the goals I came up with for the Princess.
GOAL HOW MEASUREMENT
|She lives in a safe and healthy environment.||Staff and support network provides monitoring of health needs.||She maintains a healthy A1C.|
|Staff and support network monitors any personal interactions that occur outside of her structured environments.||She is not taken advantage of in any monetary, emotional or sexual manner.|
|She has a physically active and involved lifestyle.(physical needs)||Staff and support network monitors and encourages physical activity and involvement on a weekly basis.||She engages in physical activity outside of her school environment at least once per week.|
|She continues to learn and grow in her independence skills.(mental needs)||Staff and support network assist her only when it is apparent she is unable to complete tasks on her own.||Her confidence in her abilities to successfully manage her life increases.|
|She establishes and maintains friendships outside of her family and school environment.(social needs)||Staff and support network encourage and provide her with opportunities to interact with peers.||She interacts with peers outside of school.|
|She has a variety of people she feels comfortable calling on if she needs someone to talk with.(emotional needs)||Staff and support network remind and encourage her to express her emotions with safe people. They also provide contact information.||She feels comfortable calling someone for help if she is upset.|
|She is growing in her spiritual walk.(spiritual needs)||Staff and support network encourage participation in daily and weekly spiritual disciplines.||She participates in daily and weekly spiritual disciplines.|
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