LIGHTHOUSE KIDS | AGES 5 - 13
“Everything has a purpose, to learn from it or take you somewhere better.”
The Lighthouse Kids program focuses on school age children and supporting their growing independence, learning and experiences.
Randal’s Reading Story
The simplest of things can make a big difference. Only just starting a little over 2 years ago with the Children’s Program, Randal was an eight-year-old who was very aware of the limitations nystagmus and being very nearsighted had on his performance in reading, playing sports, and many other areas. The constant uncontrollable movement of his eyes made it difficult to focus on details and a sentence in small print often seemed to be a confusing string of letters. Randal would more often than not be hesitant to try new activities if it was with a group of peers with better sight than he. He knew how much slower it took him to do certain things, he did not like feeling like the one who was slowing the group down.
Although he had this slight lack in confidence, Randal always brought and continues to bring positivity to the group instruction and community activities in which he participates with Lighthouse of SWFL. Being around other kids who have similar struggles has made him more comfortable with having a visual impairment. He takes seriously all advice and tips given to him by his instructors and puts them into practice immediately. He has learned to not get frustrated with taking longer to complete a task. He has also been a leader in boosting the group’s spirit for trying new things. He has even found new hobbies and talents through exploring with the Children’s Program. Within the last couple of years, Randal has succeeded in raising his reading level by utilizing assistive technology for magnification. He also patiently learned some new dance routines and quickened his speed in memorizing lyrics to new songs. He has even taken his newfound confidence in the kitchen and occasionally loves to bake brownies virtually on his own.
All growth and strides he has made through Lighthouse of SWFL activities are flowing over into the rest of his life at home, at school, and in the community, which is all that can be asked for. The goal of the Children’s Program is to give the kids the confidence and skills to be as independent as other kids their age with the intention to continually build on these concepts and carry them on into adulthood. Randal is just one of the many students who are making progress in their own, unique, and positive ways.