People with disabilities constitute the nation’s largest minority group. It’s also the largest minority group that anyone can become a part of at any given time. Research shows that more than 20 million families in the United States have at least one disabled family member.
Here in West Virginia, there are an estimated 405,000 people with a disability. Around 257,000 people in West Virginia have a form of work disability, while 60,000 people with disabilities in the state are employed.
One of the many nonprofit organizations in Morgantown is Stepping Stones. Stepping Stones is a non-profit recreational center for people with disabilities. It’s been around since 1946, but is very little known. It’s one of a kind in the United States. According to SteppingStones, there are over 69,220 disabled individuals over the age of five living in our service area. Stepping Stones seeks to help people focus on their abilities instead of their disabilities. They offer several programs including soccer, basketball, wheelchair basketball, summer camp, day camp, golf, computer classes, therapeutic riding, social activities, and swimming.
I recently sat down with Stepping Stones Recreation Coordinator Kim Walls and some Stepping Stones participants to talk about what Stepping Stones brings to Morgantown.
Stepping Stones offers a variety of ways to connect on their website and their Facebook page. Users are encouraged to comment on open forums, Facebook posts, and on Facebook photos and walls. Stepping Stones Recreation Coordinator Kim Walls said they try to get the word out about their unique organization as much as possible. Stepping Stones does not use Twitter as a communication method, but Kim Walls said they are looking to update their website and social media usage. In addition, the Stepping Stones website features a donate button for their organizations with information on how to serve the organization.