Providing support and building community for families raising young children with special needs.
The Orchid Club is about community, about tribe building, about support. Have you ever heard this story about Holland?
The beginning stages of raising a child with special needs can be daunting; from diagnosis to medical tests, traveling for healthcare or procedures, managing emergencies, managing other children and family life, finances and the emotions of adjusting to a new normal. We Get It.
This organization is run by parents and for parents with an emphasis on the early part of the journey; we focus on providing community support, nurture and connection with programming for families from the time of birth to school age years.
We are also excited to support more experienced parents who have an interest in being mentors for families just beginning this process OR for families with older children who want to connect with one another out in the community.
Orchid Club Goals
Our goal is that no parent or family member would feel isolated or alone as they work to wrap their minds around the “new normal” their journey has taken them on. Whether you find out about a diagnosis during pregnancy, at birth or later in life, if your little one is not developing on a “typical track” and you find yourself in therapy or spending more time in the doctor’s office than you do at home, then this organization is for you!
Orchid Club Values
- We value each family, story and process as unique
- We value privacy and protection during the early years when hearts are tender and raw
- We value connection with others as a means of healing and moving forward
- We value education and activities that understand what you’re going through and meet you where you’re at
- We value education for the broader community about how to interact, support and help their fellow community and family members who are raising Orchid Kids
Just like an orchid, children with special needs are unique and complex in their own way. They need extra love and attention to help them flourish. The vision of the Orchid Club is that every family raising a child with special needs will feel supported, empowered and connected with others sharing the joys and struggles of this unique journey. Through play groups, community events, and educational opportunities, the goal of The Orchid Club is that you know you are not alone and there is joy to be found.
An analogy was told one day: “Typically developing kids are like dandelions – resilient and tough. They’ll grow through a crack in a sidewalk or tolerate a mowing now and again. Typical kids can thrive with a little sun, food and love and mostly grow well even under some adverse circumstances.
Children with special needs are a lot more like Orchids; delicate and complex. They display incredibly beautiful blossoms…when they DO bloom, which depends on specific light, temperature and water needs. These Orchid Kids take a lot more specific care to thrive but when they bloom, they are truly an inspiring and life enriching sight to behold.”
Upon hearing this story, the idea for the Orchid Club was born! There are clubs to learn more about growing orchids, what about support for parents raising these Orchid Kids?
This club was founded by the mom of an Orchid Kid and their occupational therapist who understand that it can be a heart wrenching and raw journey to nurture an Orchid Kid. From the time of diagnosis to going to your first community event, there are bumps along the way that only other parents can really understand.
Both women had a desire for an opportunity for families to participate in events that are always available to typical kids but can be difficult when raising an Orchid. Special Needs Books and Babies was born out of this first conversation. To be able to take your child who isn’t walking or talking like the other kids there, can be painful on an already tender heart – what about a program where the other children there are still learning these things too? No stares or questions about development or size – just understanding and community!
Our calendar has grown quickly – from library story times to music classes, yoga for mom’s where it’s ok for your baby to roll around on your mat at two years old to mom or dad’s break to recreate and connect with other parents who know what it is like to count seizures, change a g-tube, order walkers or braces, spend all your time in therapy or at doctor’s offices or endure daily 2 hour tantrums, we provide activities that nurture hearts and safe spaces to process and move through the new normal of life with an Orchid Kid.