A Group for Adults with Disabilities Gathers for Fun, Friendship
Posted on March 21st, 2017 by Beth
I am pleased to introduce Molly Wiesman as a guest blogger today. Molly has a long history with Easterseals, having received speech, physical and occupational therapy at Easterseals DuPage and Fox Valley from the time she was six months old until she turned eight. Molly served as an Associate Board Member at Easterseals DuPage and Fox Valley from 2011 to 2014 and has volunteered with various outreach groups there as well.
By Molly Wiesman
I am 31 years old, and I have cerebral palsy. Since I have a disability, it may not surprise you that one of my interests for years has been connecting with other people with disabilities. And so the idea came to me: Maybe there’s a group out there with the sole purpose of helping people with disabilities find other PWDs to socialize with. Perhaps there were others out there like me who wanted this as well.
So I tried to find a group like this. I looked on Meetup.com hoping to find someone else’s group with these kind of goals, but no such group existed.
That’s when I got my idea. In my own life there was a definite lack of structured social opportunities for people with disabilities, so I set out to form my own group. Last December I started a monthly social group specifically for adults with disabilities. I called the group Chicago Disability Friends and Fun, or CDFF.
So far, CDFF has hosted two events. One was bowling, and the other was going out for coffee. And now, this Sunday, March 26, 2017 we will be going to Happy Apple Pie Shop in a Chicago suburb called Oak Park. Happy Apple Pie Shop not only sells pie, but is also a supportive work environment for people with intellectual disabilities.
We also have plans to attend a performance by solo performers with disabilities. The performance is produced by Tellin’ Tales Theatre, a group dedicated to shattering the barriers between the disabled and able-bodied worlds. Tentative summer plans for the group include seeing fireworks at Navy Pier and other fun activities!
Chicago Disability Friends and Fun has a strong presence on social media. CDFF is on Meetup.com, and we are on Facebook too. Anyone 21 and over who has a disability can join by searching Chicago Disability Friends and Fun on either of those websites and asking to join the group. You can also email me directly with questions at email@example.com. New members are always welcome!