DD Awareness Month important to many

Published 12:00 am Sunday, February 26, 2012

Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month is held in March of every year. Not only does the Lawrence County Board of DD sponsor events for the enjoyment of children and adults with disabilities, but also for community organizations to be included in these events to celebrate the month.

Employees and family members from the LCBDD programs work diligently to put on a successful month.

However, a strong community inclusion is also crucial for DD Awareness, mainly to demonstrate that events between individuals with disabilities and everyday organizations can be accomplished together.

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Afterall, working together helps to build stronger communities.

The LCBDD will be holding fun events for students and clients of its programs, such as the balloon launch at Open Door on March 1, Dr. Seuss Day on March 2 and the dance held at the TSI workshop on the evening of March 13 — all organized by employees and volunteers.

But some events need outside help to be successful every year. This is where the Lawrence County community steps up in a major way.

This year, the 5K Run/Walk will be held at The Point in South Point on March 10. Last year’s event was held in Coal Grove on the morning of the Chili Fest. For 2012, the committee for the 5K decided to move it to another location in Lawrence County, since the LCBDD serves individuals throughout the county.

This year’s 5K attracted monetary sponsors from our area, with a major sponsorship coming from Elite Rehab and Fitness. Other sponsorships for the race include: Aaron’s Business Solutions, Ohio River Bank , Desco Federal Credit Union, Rax in Ironton, Scherer Mountain Insurance, McDonald’s in South Point, Bon Secour’s Health Systems, Ashland, Inc., Guy’s Floor Covering, and Bill’s Sewer and Drain. The LCBDD wishes to give a grateful ‘thank you’ for these donations, which go towards the organization of the events for awareness.

The other major event which incorporates community involvement is the 13th Chili Fest and Craft Show, held at Dawson-Bryant High School.

Every year, approximately two dozen organizations or individuals are sought after to participate in chili-cooking.

Civic groups, health care and educational organizations and businesses from our area join members and family of the DD community to cook in the Chili Fest, attracting upwards of 1,000 attendees every year. Other events at the Chili Fest include crafts from local vendors, health screenings and a kids’ corner coordinated by the LCBDD early childhood staff.

The final event of the month is the DD Awareness basketball games on March 27 at Dawson-Bryant High School.

Though it may not attract as much attention from the community, clients from the LCBDD look forward to participating in the sporting event every year and view it as the most enjoyable experience throughout the month.

This year’s event will include a new game — the Lawrence County Office holders against The Tribune — to go along with the ODS and TSI games. Players in this game hope to raise awareness among the community, donate to the LCBDD awareness committee, and have a little competitive fun in the process.

In addition to participating in the events, volunteers come out to make sure there is enough help for success.

Judge David Payne and the Lawrence County Juvenile Center, Collins Career Center, Ohio University Southern, Cross Community Church and volunteers from the LCBDD and other partners make the events possible by volunteering their time to set up, clean up, and all-around chip in to help.

As you can see, DD Awareness is more than holding events for the enjoyment of individuals with disabilities. Area organizations’ participation helps to build a stronger community by all of us enjoying events together despite our differences and capabilities.

The LCBDD wishes to thank ALL those who participate in DD Awareness Month.


Tim Nunnery is the public relations/personnel director for the Lawrence County Board of Developmental Disabilities. To participate in any of the DD Awareness events or for more information, call (740) 532-7401 or by email at tnunnery@lawrencedd.org.