vody/> RCM - Revitalizing Community Membership: Empowering Independence: July 2015

Friday, July 10, 2015

Lauren Potter of 'Glee' Fame Named Goodwill Ambassador for Special Olympics

Lauren Potter was here, and for six seasons, Lauren played Becky Jackson on 'Glee'. Recently, Lauren’s been named a Goodwill Ambassador for the Special Olympics World Summer Games 2015. 

Fun facts about Lauren Potter (Source: Wikipedia)

Potter was born May 10, 1990, and grew up in Southern California's Inland Empire. She graduated from Riverside Polytechnic High School in Riverside, California, and was studying at Irvine Valley College in Irvine, California, as of Fall 2011. Potter has Down syndrome.

Potter portrays the character Becky Jackson, a cheerleader with Down syndrome, on the TV show Glee. Cheerleading coach Sue Sylvester (Jane Lynch) takes a special interest in Becky in part because Sue's older sister, Jean, also had Down syndrome. In 2015, Potter will appear as Jenny in the short film "Guest Room".


Jewel-Osco Employee and Special Olympics Illinois Athlete Named Company Ambassador

Jewel-Osco will be relaunching their at-register fundraising campaign through their “Making Change” donation program called “Change for Champions” in support of Special Olympics Illinois this July.

This program began running July 1 and will continue through July 31 at 184 Jewel-Osco locations and customers will be encouraged to make a $1, $3 or $5 donation.

“Change for Champions” will feature Thomas Strack, a Special Olympics Illinois athlete and employee of Jewel-Osco. This year Thomas is celebrating 25 years with Jewel-Osco working as a Courtesy Clerk/Bagger in the Palos Heights store located at 12803 S. Harlem Avenue.

“Thomas has been a wonderful, hardworking employee who knows many of our customers on a first name basis and continually offers them assistance with their groceries,” said Mike Withers, President of Jewel-Osco. “He is also known for handing out holiday greeting cards to all of his fellow associates. A courtesy they look forward to every year.”


Tuesday, July 7, 2015

End the Awkward: Focus on the Person, Not the Disability - A One-Day Event on July 15th - Register by Tomorrow, July 8th and Receive Your “End the Awkward” Participant Package

End the Awkward: Focus on the Person, Not the Disability
DC Office of Human Rights
Wednesday, July 15, 2015 from 9:00 AM to 10:00 PM (EDT)

The “End the Awkward” project is a one-day event on July 15 in the District of Columbia that empowers you to share information about people with disabilities, and to take a pledge to raise awareness and better understand disability issues. By registering for the project, you commit to wearing an "End the Awkward" pin (right) on July 15 and to learn a few short talking points we provide about respectful ways to interact with people with disabilities. When people see your pin and ask how to "end the awkward," you can simply recite one of the talking points. It's that easy, and together we can reach thousands of people! Businesses across the District will have their employees join in as well!

Participants who register (free) before July 8 will be sent an “End the Awkward” participant package, which includes the "End the Awkward" pin, talking points and additional information about the day. Although we encourage people to participate across the nation, participant packages can only be sent to addresses in the District of Columbia, Maryland or Virginia. 

To learn more about this event, click here: End the Awkward: Focus on the Person, Not the Disability


A Theatre Festival Rejected This Man’s Volunteer Application Because He Has A Disability

According to a letter he shared on Facebook last Saturday, Hughes’ application to be a “friendraiser” was denied because he is non-verbal due to a disability.

“Over the years, our needs for volunteer support during the Festival have changed and evolved, and due to the nature of the current demands on our Festival, we are now obligated to engage only those volunteers whose skill sets match those of the job,” said the letter.

“For instance, all volunteers on the FriendRaisers Team must now be able to actively communicate and engage with Festival Patrons, both asking for donations and explaining how the Festival benefits from this support.”


Did You Know that in April 2015, My Plumber, a Virginia Business Donated a Portion of Their Profits to Autism Research?

This awesome Virginia business donated a portion of their profits to Autism research!

Our community needs to show our support to businesses like this.

My Plumber Heating and Cooling has launched a campaign to promote awareness and raise research funding for autism spectrum disorder (ASD): The general, oft-misunderstood term for a group of complex, brain development-disorders that affects nearly 1 in 68 American children.

Throughout the month of April, their fleet of specially wrapped My Plumber service vans and trucks travel the region, bearing the iconic Puzzle Piece and a ribbon. A portion of all profit earned was donated back to local organizations that support the cause, as well as research for a cure.

“My Plumber is in the business of helping people,” said Wendell Presgrave, owner of My Plumber Heating & Cooling in Manassas, Virginia. “Our customers invite us into their homes, into their private lives. You wouldn’t believe the people we’ve met, and the stories we’ve heard: Did you know many autistic children love running water, and will flush, and flush, and flush until a toilet is clogged? More than one parent of a child on the spectrum has thanked us, over and over, for the peace of mind that comes with knowing there’s a reliable plumber they can call.”

As the Washington, DC metropolitan area’s go-to plumber, My Plumber Heating and Cooling recognizes the vital importance of community involvement; in addition to promoting awareness, company employees regularly volunteer their time to support and fundraise for the cause.

About Autism

Autism is a general term used to describe a group of complex developmental brain disorders – autism spectrum disorders – caused by a combination of genes and environmental influences. These disorders are characterized, in varying degrees, by communication difficulties, social and behavioral challenges, and repetitive behaviors.

Please visit them on facebook 

Website: My Plumber

Thank you!


Maddie Stuart, Model with Down Syndrome, Lands Her First Gig with Fitness Brand Manifesta

We first met Maddie Stuart in May this year, when she announced her dream to become a model and her story went viral. The 18-year-old from Brisbane wanted to help change how society sees people with Down syndrome, saying in a Facebook post that "exposure will help to create acceptance in life."

Now her dream has come true - Stuart has landed her first modelling contract, fronting a campaign for body-positive activewear brand Manifesta, which designs clothes specifically with curvy women in mind and uses flower names to indicate size instead of those shamey numbers. It also showcases its clothes on strong, healthy women of all shapes and sizes.

If you missed our first story about Maddie, you can read it here:

'He Loves the Camera!' 11-Month-Old with Down Syndrome Lands a Deal with the Same Model Agent as His Mother After Winning Over a Legion of Fans on Her Instagram

A beautiful model has signed her adorable 11-month-old son with Down syndrome up with her agent after learning that he loves posing in front of the camera - just like his mother.

Amanda Booth, 26, a first time mom from Los Angeles, has been modeling for the past 10 years. And her son Micah Quinones, who was diagnosed with Down syndrome when he was three-months-old happens to share her love of the camera.

 'As soon as the camera comes out, he looks right into it,' she told ABC News. 'Everyone says to [Micah]: "You're just like your mother."'

While Amanda wouldn't describe herself as being gorgeous, she can now say with confidence that people who told her she and her husband Mike Quinones would make beautiful babies were absolutely right.

'I felt like when we [she and her husband] got married, there was all this weird pressure on us to have kids,' she recalled.

'People would always say things like, "you two have to have kids, they'll be so gorgeous" and I was like "who are these crazy people?" But I guess they were right.'
Amanda is a successful model who has appeared in five network commercials over the past few years, recently shooting a Lancome commercial with Julia Roberts.


Wednesday, July 1, 2015

RCM of Washington June 2015 Newsletter

See what RCM has been up to this June! And if you'd like to join our mailing list, please send us a private message with your email address. To send your email, click HERE. 


We Still Have Two Tickets Available for Our Spirit of Washington Boat Ride on July 18th

We still have two tickets available for our Spirit of Washington Boat Ride on July 18, 2015. The tickets are $58.54 each. 

If you are interested in purchasing these tickets please contact, Kim at 202-299-7425.


Washington, DC - Mayor Bowser Parade: July 4, 2015

Washington, DC - Mayor Bowser parade July 4th, 9th and I Streets, 9:00 a.m.


Verbena House Had a Great Time at the Ward 4 Cookout

Verbena House had a great time at the Ward 4 cookout!


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