Happy Birthday Ellis!

Dear Family and Friends,

Can you believe that six years ago, on November 20th of 2012 to be exact, the Ellis Center was born? Back then, my husband Tim and I spent exhausting years hearing from others what wasn't possible because our son’s needs were not addressed through a standard special education curriculum. Meanwhile, we saw him begin to slip away due to a system that didn’t work for our nontraditional learner.

Our son, who once loved interacting with the world and those around him, had retreated into his shell. This all changed when we made the bold decision that would change our lives forever—to start Ellis. As we absorbed as much knowledge from therapists, educators and national experts as we could, we quickly realized we were on to something amazing.  Creating a place where every child could be heard and communicate was formed with a mission focused on what IS possible. 

Our son started this new way of learning, and we saw him blossom into to a happy and engaged child.  As word spread about his changes and the magic we had unknowingly created, parents reached out to me daily wanting to know more. We made the decision that we couldn’t be selfish and keep this groundbreaking idea to ourselves, and—working together with dedicated providers, experts in deafblindness and communication facilitation, and special education leaders—Ellis began growing. Six years later, we now provide Camp ImpAACt, Community Education Events, Evaluation Services and a School Program that includes summer school and six full-time students each with a one-on-one intervener. 

At the end of the day, what we want is to provide an outlet and opportunities for other children and their families to be heard in our community. We have seen that again this year with our 20 campers, 3 summer school students and 6 full-time students as well as the over 100 parents, educators, and therapists who have joined us for Community Education events.  We have captured something great at the Ellis Center, and we know that we must continue to reach more and serve more in our community. 

Of course, we have not gotten where we are alone. Through the support of our friends, families, board members, donors, staff and volunteers we can make this all possible for the over 130 people we directly serve each year. With that being said, we want you to celebrate our birthday with us! Join us in sharing your stories, providing us support and helping us make an impact for the next 6 years and more to come. 

Happy Birthday Ellis Center!
Alison Caputo
Executive Director and Co-Founder