Cape Coral non-profit provides virtual help for children with special needs

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Founders of “Family Initiative” David Brown and Anjali Van Drie teach their group how to draw Baby Yoda over video chat. (WINK News)

With some toe-tappin’, hand clappin’ and lots of laughs, Cape Coral non-profit “Family Initiative” founders David Brown and Anjali Van Drie dance to bring joy to children on the autism spectrum.

“We’re holding our autism spectrum social skills group virtually,” Van Drie said.

They’ve transitioned all spectrum disorder support groups to video conference because of COVID-19.

“A lot of our kids are struggling with the lack of routine or structure, which we all are, but particularly for our kids, a lot of kids on the autism spectrum do have difficulty engaging and interacting in a social manner, so it’s been awesome to put it in a mode that they are comfortable with,” she said.

Spending hours helping them develop social skills with activities like show-and-tell or learning how to draw Baby Yoda.

“The other benefit of being able to bring this all virtually is we’ve been able to expand our reach where we have families from across the state,” Van Drie said. “I think the most rewarding part is just the fun and the laughter and the joy that we see.”

She says it’s these smiles helping her through these trying times because we’re all in this together.

Family Initiative flyer

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