Friends of Children With Special Needs (FCSN)

Friends of Children With Special Needs (FCSN)

Friends of Children with Special Needs (FCSN) was founded by 10 Asian families in 1996. Within a quarter of a century, FCSN has rapidly increased membership to 1,000+ ethnically diversified families (85% Asians). FCSN launched East Bay Center in 2006 and South Bay Center in 2017. FCSN actively serves 300+

Friends of Children With Special Needs (FCSN)

Friends of Children with Special Needs (FCSN) was founded by 10 Asian families in 1996. Within a quarter of a century, FCSN has rapidly increased membership to 1,000+ ethnically diversified families (85% Asians). FCSN launched East Bay Center in 2006 and South Bay Center in 2017. FCSN actively serves 300+ children and adults with special needs on a daily basis through 50+ innovative programs/services: 1) For Children: Enrichment programs (arts/crafts, music, dance, computer…), day care, sport camps, drama camp. 2) For Adults: Adult Day Programs, Living Services, Employment Programs, Transportation. 3) For Families: Respite Services, Mentorship, Outreach, Seminars, Family support

About the Organization:

Friends of Children with Special Needs (FCSN) was founded by 10 Asian families in 1996. Within a quarter of a century, FCSN has rapidly increased membership to 1,000+ ethnically diversified families (85% Asians). FCSN launched East Bay Center in 2006 and South Bay Center in 2017. FCSN actively serves 300+ children and adults with special needs on a daily basis through 50+ innovative programs/services: 1) For Children: Enrichment programs (arts/crafts, music, dance, computer…), day care, sport camps, drama camp. 2) For Adults: Adult Day Programs, Living Services, Employment Programs, Transportation. 3) For Families: Respite Services, Mentorship, Outreach, Seminars, Family support

organizational budget

8 MILLION - 15 MILLION

existence for

26-30 YEARS

Organization benefits AAPIs residing in the following state(s):

California • New York

organizational budget

8 MILLION - 15 MILLION

existence for

26-30 YEARS

Organization benefits AAPIs residing in the following state(s):

California • New York

The Issue:

AAPI individuals with special needs are vulnerable, underserved and misunderstood. They face numerous challenges and issues: Racial Injustice Issues – AAPI have been hit particularly hard as the pandemic has mutated into a virus of hate, harassment and violence. AAPI with developmental disabilities are even more prone to victims of racist attacks, violence, discrimination, harassment and bullying. They are “voiceless” or "silent" as they don’t know how to access resources and are incapable of taking legal actions. They are lack of training and guidance to protect, advocate and seek help to protect themselves. Health Issues – Per CDC, adults with developmental disabilities are 57% more likely being obese than adults without disabilities. It is more difficult for them to eat healthy, control weight, and be physically active due to low metabolism, physical/intellectual limitations and complicated health problems. Safety Issues – 1) AAPI families often are lack of resources to prepare, respond and recover from disaster/emergency situations, e.g., fire, earthquakes, power outages, target violence. Many parents have challenges in assisting their children with disabilities responding to emergencies. 2) Majority of individuals with autism have deficits in communicating, following instructions and often display fixations in their behaviors and perseverating talks which may result in misunderstandings by the first law enforcement responders and cause tragic incidents. Lack of Employment - 85% of AAPI adults with developmental disabilities are unemployed despite their capability, desire, and willingness to work. The unemployment status negatively affects their self-esteem and social isolation. Many employers have myths that individuals with disabilities can’t work or are less productive than general workers. They are afraid the costs will be much higher than benefits in training and accommodating the disabled. Lack of Family Support Services – Families feel devastated after finding out their children’s diagnosis. AAPI parents often are lack of guidance, support and resources in raising children with disabilities. There are misconceptions that individuals with disabilities are lack of abilities, can’t learn and can be violent. AAPI parents are judged of having poor parenting skills when their children display behaviors. Families and individuals are often not welcomed and included in the community.

The Solution:

A. Sodality Against Anti-Asian Racism Develop easy-understanding curriculums and Conduct series of Safety Empowerment Training for 150 AAPI individuals with special needs to learn self-defense and practice strategies to avert potential harm and racial violence, and seek help for safety. Provide support and reporting assistance for the victims of AAPI hate incidents in their preferred language (Mandarin, Cantonese, Taiwanese, Tagalog, Vietnamese). Collaborate with advocacy groups and local governments to build an embracing and compassionate Diverse, Equitable, Inclusive (DEI) community, take urgent steps to prevent racism attacks/xenophobic violence associated with COVID, and help AAPI fight anti-Asian racism. B. Promoting Optimal Health Conduct health education on Healthy Lifestyle, Human Anatomy, Stress Management and COVID Mitigation strategies. .Select 20 obese/overweight clients, engage them in exercises, 45 min/day, 5 days/week, making healthy food choices, and monitoring their food intake portions C. Safety and Emergency Readiness : Conduct emergency preparedness training to 100 AAPI families with special needs and guide them how to develop their disaster plans and prepare grab-and-go ER bags. Fully prepare/equip FCSN with 72-hour survival kits. Develop FCSN Emergency Executing Plan and conduct staff training and disaster drills. Engage with Volunteer Organizations Active in Disasters and Office of Emergency Services to prepare, plan and stay informed Collaborate with San Jose and Fremont for training their first responders on how to communicate and de-escalate fear and behaviors of individuals with disabilities. D. Maximizing Employment Assess vocational skills, identify barriers and develop individualized employment road map for 20 adults with special needs. Provide customized employment training, arrange volunteer work/paid internship. Assist them submitting job applications and preparing for interviews. Network with local business and chamber of commerce for offering internship or job opportunities. E. Family Support Services Outreach 30 AAPI parents with newly diagnosed children and provide 1:1 mentorship and support. Offer support groups and seminars to guide/educate parents how to advocate for their loved ones and utilize government-funded services that are available to them. Host 2 family fairs with resource tables, voter registration, fun games, food and music to raise disability awareness, share resources, network, and promote community inclusion/ integration.

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