Courtesy of WNBU:
Over 1,100 people showed up to this year’s LOGAN Nose-On luncheon. LOGAN Center hosts the annual event to raise awareness for people who have intellectual or developmental disabilities.
They only expected almost 1,000 people to show up, so having over 1,100 people is great for the center.
They also received a big check for $150,000 from the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians, which is bound to help a lot of people.
But the big takeaway was what the keynote speaker, WNBA’s Elena Delle Donne, had to say.
Delle Donne knows the feeling all too well, being the little sister to someone who is blind and deaf.
“[A girl] was looking at my sister like she was a monster,” Delle Donne said. “And that’s something that stuck with me for my entire life.”
To Delle Donne, her sister was the complete opposite of a monster.
“Growing up with Lizzie was an absolute blessing,” Delle Donne said. “She taught me so many lessons that I don’t think I would have learned without having her as my older sister, like perspective.”
And it’s been a blessing for Lizzie being given equal support from her sister, because unfortunately, it’s a common thing for people with disabilities and their families to hear they can never do something again.
“Doctors said she would never be able to hold her head up on her own,” Delle Donne said. “She’ll never be able to walk. And she’s done all those things plus more.”
That’s something not too far off from what Janet Menting was told two years ago after getting into a bad car accident.
“They actually told me they’d never see me walk or talk or move my hands,” Menting said. “I have use of one hand.”
Menting actually spent 2 months in a coma after the accident. Two years later, after persisting and fighting for what she wanted, she’s surpassing those expectations.She’s working at the front desk at LOGAN now and she’s already made some huge improvements.
“At home, I go on walks every night,” Menting said. “I get up and run. And mom can’t keep up with me! Dad and mom are like ‘Janet! Slow down!'”
Both women want to spread a message of hope.
“I encourage a lot of people that are in a wheelchair to set their mind to stuff,” Menting said. “Not just give up on one thing.”
“Special needs individuals are an absolute joy and a gift to all of us and we’ve just got to continue to get them out in the community,” Delle Donne said.
There are still plenty of people out there who are looking for support and motivation. If you’d like to help out the cause, you can donate on LOGAN’s website at http://www.logancenter.org/donate/