“Now I Know She Can Thrive in a Sighted Environment.” -Anadalia’s Mother, Nallely
If you ask any teacher or specialist at BCC, “Who is the Blind Children’s Center’s most confident student?” the answer would come back unanimously—Anadalia. A social butterfly who is usually the first student to raise her hand in class, she dreams of becoming a dentist someday.
Her confidence has not been easily won. The youngest child of immigrant parents, Anadalia was born legally blind due to a rare disorder known as PHACES Syndrome as well as childhood glaucoma and cataracts and, like her classmates, she has lived a third of her life during a worldwide pandemic.
Now Anadalia is poised to graduate and move on to her local public school next year. Since entering our program as a 7-month-old infant, she has grown by leaps and bounds through literacy instruction, orientation & mobility training including the use of a white cane, and advocating for her own needs, where she has excelled. In fact, Anadalia is the only student in school with two best friends!
It didn’t take long for Anadalia to form friendships when she started as a student at Blind Children’s Center. She quickly bonded with not one…but two best friends, Kaylee and Mila. Every day you can hear their laughter on the playground or see them strolling hand in hand on their way to lunch. Their bond is truly unbreakable and their friendship truly unique. That is because while Anadalia is legally blind, Mila and Kaylee are both sighted.
Since its introduction in 1988, BCC’s inclusion model has seen thousands of children who are sighted learn alongside children who are blind or visually impaired, fostering an environment of compassion and empathy for all students. Not only is BCC the only preschool in the Los Angeles area serving children ages 0-5 who are blind or visually impaired, we also continue to be the only school with an inclusion model.
When she enrolled in the Blind Children’s Center as a 7-month-old infant, neither Anadalia nor her family could have realized the growth she would achieve in such a short amount of time. Through her years as a student, Anadalia has received comprehensive individualized education and training in sensory development, orientation & mobility, occupational therapy, and early literacy skills. Now she uses her white cane skills to confidently navigate her way around the school and beyond!
Our expert team of teachers and specialists has decades of experience and uses leading edge technology and adaptive equipment to encourage all our students to reach their highest potential. Focus is also placed on physical fitness and mobility through adaptive physical education classes and endless opportunities for learning through play. Our teachers and specialists utilize our colorful indoor Therapeutic Learning Center (TLC) and beloved outdoor therapeutic playground to build fitness, self-confidence and social skills in a natural, inclusive environment, with sighted children represented in nearly equal number as children with a disability.
Anadalia dreams of becoming a dentist when she grows up. In fact, she even dressed up like a dentist at our recent “Trunk or Treat” Halloween party! Because she was born legally blind, many may have thought this dream impossible. That was before Blind Children’s Center.
She is now set to graduate in the Spring and start public school in the fall as a first grader. Her years of schooling at Blind Children’s Center have prepared her with the confidence and skills needed to successfully integrate into a mainstream education where the majority of the students will be sighted. In fact, her mom says, “Now I know she has what it takes to thrive in a sighted world.”
You are the reason she thrives. You are the reason she is one step closer to achieving her dreams.
Our students returned to campus three months ago and the bonds of friendship are stronger than ever. As we approach the new year and the expectation of a growing enrollment, we need your support more than ever.
Please give today so Anadalia and other young children like her can build friendships, achieve independence and find a brighter future.