Sharing the Spirit of the Holidays
Article ImageSanta took a break from toy making on Dec. 5 to bring holiday cheer to some First Steps families we serve. This annual tradition dates back almost as long as the Sertoma Club of Broad Ripple's 60-year history of supporting Noble.

Armed with toy and clothing lists, Sertoma members gather at Meijers for a major shopping spree, and volunteers wrap and tag each bag and box. The many hours of planning culminate in a festive luncheon for each of the families, after which Santa and Mrs. Claus help distribute gifts and pose for photos.
Raising Everyone's Expectations
Article ImageThe minute Lauryn was born at 33 weeks, Jennifer and Jay knew that their newborn daughter had Down syndrome. As a teacher, Jennifer understood that early intervention can help babies with delays learn the skills other babies pick up on their own. So even before Lauryn left the hospital, Jennifer called Noble’s Kids Only early intervention.

Soon, Lauryn was receiving weekly Occupational, Physical and Speech Therapies to help her develop the muscles she needed to sit up, take those first steps and form her first words. When she turned three, Lauryn enrolled in the co-op preschool her sisters and brothers had attended, becoming the first child with Down syndrome to attend. Since then, other kids with disabilities have enrolled there.
Now eight, Lauryn continues to work with Noble through Recreational Therapy, where she is learning important life skills like socializing and taking turns, as well as working on gross motor and fine motor skills. Looking to the future, Jennifer says, “At first, we worried whether she would do the things you hope for your child. Now I worry, will people have high enough expectations of her?”
Tis the Season of Giving (Back)
Article ImageChris has had a long career spanning years, jobs and companies, each one adding to an impressive resume. Like the more than 650 people who volunteer for Noble each year, however, he felt the need to give back to our community in other ways as well. For over 10 years, he has volunteered a couple times a week for the St. Vincent de Paul Food Pantry. On Wednesdays, he and his dad deliver groceries to seven clients who aren't able to get to the Food Pantry on their own.
On Thursdays, he and Noble Community Exploration staff Tony Baugh spend the morning working in the pantry itself. Chris' tasks vary with the most pressing needs, but often include boxing up loose cans of soda to be placed out on the line, salvaging 12 packs of soda to be put out, bagging up snack-size bags of chips and other snacks, and sorting other items as needed.
Many people think of individuals with disabilities as always being on the receiving end of assistance, but Chris and dozens of others served by Noble are demonstrating every day that they are filling an unmet need in our community. In fact, the people we serve volunteered over 11,300 hours of their time and talent in the past year to not-for-profits that truly appreciate the help. And they are setting a wonderful example for others to emulate.

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