Poughkeepsie, N.Y. (February 11, 2020) – More than 40 vendors providing support for individuals with disabilities and special needs of all ages will be in attendance at ABILITIES FIRST: A Showcase of Resources for Enrichment and Inclusion. The Showcase will be held on Saturday, March 14, 2020 from 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., at the Poughkeepsie Galleria Mall in Poughkeepsie, New York. Children with special needs and their families can attend the Showcase in a sensory-sensitive environment from 9:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. before the mall opens. Admission to the Showcase is free and open to the public. Abilities First is spearheading the event to bring together resources to enrich the lives of children and adults with any A traditional term that generally means a person has a condition that makes it difficult for them to do things that those without disabilities can do. While we try to minimize use of this term because it emphasizes people’s limitations rather than strengths, it is sometimes necessary for diagnostic and funding purposes. whether it be developmental, intellectual, physical, or other.
This year’s event will once again feature Hudson Valley Parent Magazine’s My Abilities are SUPER Cover Kid Search. The 2020 Abilities First Ambassador, William Eugene Van Ornum, Jr., will serve as the Grand Marshal of the event.
A new and highly anticipated vendor and presenter is MOVIA Robotics, Inc. MOVIA is a collaborative robotics company that develops and builds software and systems that help people and robots work together. MOVIA customizes The process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, values, beliefs and habits. We believe all children and adults can benefit from quality education. and learning readiness skills curriculum delivery systems to be carried out by their family of friendly robots, which work with children and adults with disabilities. For example, MOVIA’s research-based activities have shown that children with A developmental condition that affects social interactions, communication and repetitive behavior. A person with autism may or may not also have an intellectual disability. Spectrum Disorder (ASD) have improved social interactions with the robots and carry that success into their everyday lives. In addition, the robots teach skills that foster inclusion between students with ASD and typically developing students. MOVIA will have a robotics presentation at the Showcase at 1:15 p.m.
The Showcase schedule of events includes:
9:30 AM: Early opening in a sensory-sensitive environment
10:00 AM – 3:00 PM: Showcase opens with 30+ vendors, giveaways, and more
10:00 AM: Sensory yoga for kids (near Center Court); Cover Kid Contest photoshoot for Hudson Valley Parent’s “My Abilities are Super” Contest (near Target); Sensory-friendly movies courtesy of Regal’s “My Way Matinee”: Onward & Sonic The Hedgehog
12:00 PM: Welcoming remarks by Abilities First President and CEO Dr. Jeffery Fox, Grand Marshal William Eugene Van Ornum, Jr. (2020 Abilities First Ambassador of the Year), and additional representatives (Center Court)
12:30 PM: Abilities First School flash mob (Center Court)
1:00 PM: Ms. Wheelchair and Junior Miss Wheelchair of New York
1:15 PM: Robotics demonstration by MOVIA Robotics, Inc.
1:45 PM: Sports demonstration by Ali Adaptive Sports and Fitness
The Showcase event is hosted by the Poughkeepsie Galleria Mall with support provided by MOVIA Robotics, Dutchess County Government, THINK DIFFERENTLY, and media sponsors, iHeart Media and Hudson Valley Parent.
About Abilities First
Founded in 1962, Abilities First is a nonprofit organization serving the needs of those with developmental disabilities from pre-school through adulthood. With more than 650 dedicated employees committed to providing educational, vocational, residential, The acquisition of certain skills required for a self-sufficient life. and family support services, Abilities First gives individuals with disabilities and their families the support to attain independence, self-determination, The practice of including people with special needs in all aspects of typical community life. Abilities First believes that if integration occurs naturally in a setting (e.g., classroom, place of work, residential neighborhood, etc.), the ratio of people with disabilities to those without should approximate what is found in the total population. That is, less than or equal to 20% people with disabilities. and acceptance by others. In serving over 1,400 children and adults throughout the Hudson Valley region of New York State, Abilities First holds a long-term commitment to creating a cohesive culture of compassion, empowerment and respect for these individuals through The process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, values, beliefs and habits. We believe all children and adults can benefit from quality education., exploration and experience. Abilities First is accredited for person-centered care by the Council on Quality and Leadership. For more information, visit www.AbilitiesFirstNY.org or on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/AbilitiesFirstInc.