Landmark on Main Street
Partners in Performing Arts
Spectrum of Hope ***NOTE NEW DATE***
Nurturing Abilities, Creating Opportunities
Tuesday, March 28, 2017 at 7:30 pm

"Everyone is one step away from a person with special needs. In fact, you could say that everyone is a person with special needs." - Abe King, co-owner, Coffeed

On Tuesday, March 28, Conversations from Main Street explores the ways educators, parents and business owners can tap into the creativity and passion of people with disabilities to create opportunities for productive employment and rich, rewarding lives in inclusive communities.

More and more our schools have students who learn differently. Autism, ADD, ADHD, Down's Syndrome, Hearing or Visually Impaired, Intellectually Disabled and more are labels that focus on a person's challenges rather than his or her capabilities. Unfortunately, these students have often been separated from their peers, leaving generations of people unaware of the benefits of inclusion for individuals as well as society.

Our touching video presentation and passionate panel discussion will be followed by a Q&A with the audience, and the chance to share information and resources.

If you're a parent, educator, business owner, community leader or service provider, you want to be part of this conversation.

Our panel will include:

Eileen McDonald Egan, Executive Director of Community Mainstreaming Associates (CMA) and Community Mainstreaming Enterprises (CME). Eileen oversees a team of professionals providing supports to individuals with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities on Long Island; including Residential, Employment, Medicaid Service Coordination, and Self Directed Community Habilitation. CME owns Coffeed, a bakery/coffee shop in the Village of Port Washington, where individuals with developmental disabilities work and train alongside typical workers.

Faith Kappenberg, Ph.D., L.C.S.W., Director of the L. I. Early Childhood Direction Center (LI-ECDC) at The Center for Community Inclusion (CCI) at LIU Post College which provides families, educators, early interventionists, medical professionals, employers and the community at large with resources to support individuals with disabilities, enabling them to become active members of their communities and meet their full potential in all aspects of life.

Abe King, founder and co-owner of Coffeed, which owns and operates bakery cafes around the metropolitan area. Abe has chosen to make his Coffeed locations a supportive workplace for adults with special needs. Working with CMA (Community Mainstreaming Associates,) a Long Island-based non-profit with a mission to assist people with intellectual and developmental disabilities pursue and lead meaningful lives, COFFEED hires and trains CMA clients to assist in the operations of their Port Washington location.

Ronnie Shuster, retired principal of P94M, the Spectrum School, a K-12 public school serving over 400 NYC students with autism as well as other disabilities. She put her belief that the visual and performing arts are critical to youth development into practice with a pioneering program that incorporates arts education in every classroom in the school. P94M students are engaged as actors, singers, dancers, designers and stage managers, allowing for a rich arts education experience and the development of personal and academic skills.

Stella Spanakos, co-founder of the Nicholas Center for Autism. The Nicholas Center for Autism and its Spectrum Designs Foundation family of businesses provide regular employment and a stable social environment for young adults with autism. Founded just 5 years ago, Spectrum's custom apparel business has grown to over $1 million in annual sales of imprinted and embroidered clothing and soft goods. The success of this first business has already spawned new manufacturing businesses that offer even more employment opportunities.

Elise May, panel moderator, is on the Steering Committee of the Arts in Special Education Consortium and the Developer and Program Director of Creative Readers, an arts/literacy inclusion program partnered by the Port Washington Public Library and PW SEPTA.

Conversations from Main Street programming is underwritten by a grant from the Angela & Scott Jaggar Foundation, and provides an open forum for presentation and discussion of important family, educational and public affairs issues. Admission is free and no tickets are required.

Partners in Performing Arts:

Partners in Performing Arts

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