NonProfitView – 75 Years of Service

75 Years of Service
by Cathy Mendoza, Executive Director, Society for disABILITIES

When I first met Mae, she was a bit despondent and a lot determined! We were delivering a motorized scooter to her…but what she was really getting was some freedom. Mae lives in a board and care home in a small town and, due to COPD and other health issues, cannot walk far. She couldn’t even make it to the corner store for a cup of Coca-Cola…her favorite. I tried to chat with her a bit…small talk really. But as she sat on that bright red scooter, she looked at me and said, “I gotta go!” The last time I saw Mae, she was humming to herself headed to the corner store for her beloved soda. I did get a glimpse of her as we drove away – she was driving her scooter in circles and figure eights in the parking lot with a huge smile on her face.

When I first heard about Emilio, I only knew that his mom was hesitant to bring him to our adapted sports events. She was afraid, that due to his physical impairment, he wouldn’t be able to participant in a meaningful way and be embarrassed or discouraged. After a few laps around the skating rink with apparatus to support him and surrounded by his peers, she realized he would be just fine in our adapted sports programs. His mom reached out to us after that day saying, “Thank you for putting on the skating event! I truly appreciate you guys. I’ve always been too afraid to let our son participate. Watching him skate, I saw how happy this made him and I’d like to sign him up for Winter snow Skiing. This event gave me the push we needed to try new activities and not restrict him due to our own fear.” The last time I saw Emilio, he was pulling in from a trip down the ski run in one of our specialized “sit ski chairs.” He was fresh faced from the brisk winter air and grinning ear to ear, as were his parents when they saw him. I hear that he slept, with a smile on his face, all the way home.

For 75 years, the Society for disABILITIES has been bringing smiles to the faces of our clients and their caregivers. We work tirelessly to enhance lives in our community through our Medical Equipment Loan Closet, Adapted Sports Programs and Thrift Store career rehabilitation. Since our founding in 1947 and through seven name changes, we have persevered and grown in our mission to enhance the lives of people with disabilities. Today we serve over 6,000 individuals per year.

Please join us as we celebrate our 75th year of service to the most vulnerable in our community…volunteer, donate and refer. You can help us bring smiles to those who need us most!

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About the Author:

Chris Murphy is the President and CEO of Sierra Pacific Warehouse Group and Publisher and Founder of ModestoView Inc. Chris worked globally in the cycling industry returning to Modesto in 1996. He is also the founder of the Modesto Historic Graffiti Cruise Route, Legends of the Cruise Walk of Fame, Modesto Rockin’ Holiday, the Modesto Music History Organization and co-founder of the Modesto Area Music Association. Chris is married to his artist wife Rebecca since 1985 and has two daughters Madison and Abigail, both graduating from Modesto High and UC Berkeley. He is lead singer and guitarist for his band, Third Party that donates their performances to non-profits.