According to AIDB Assistant Director for Development Jessica Parker, the money received will be used to help fund a multi-sensory room at the Helen Keller School of Alabama to be located within the Awakenings Program.
Multi-sensory rooms held provide a means of therapy for individuals with learning disabilities.
“The equipment in these rooms is designed to stimulate the sensory pathways of touch, taste, sight, sound, smell and movement of individuals with physical and cognitive impairments,” Parker said. “Through the use of light, sound, tactile surfaces, etc., the goal is to essentially strengthen the brain, which can be easily overwhelmed by a ‘sensory traffic jam.’”
Awakenings Director Jennifer Oldenburg discussed the practical benefits of adding the multi-sensory room to the facility.
“The idea of a multi-sensory room is to provide stimulation, and yet be calming,” Oldenburg said. “It aims to provide a failure-free experience, allowing stimulation without the need for verbal abilities or requiring specific outcomes. This will be a place where our students with learning difficulties can experience things that can help them understand the world in which they live.”
So far in 2013, the Tony Stewart Foundation issued grants to more than 47 programs in 17 states. Since the grant’s inception in 2004, the foundation has awarded approximately $5.2 million to organizations serving children, animals and injured drivers in all but three states in the U.S.
“(Our institute) is so grateful to the racing community for all that they do to support the educational programs that make a difference in the lives of our students,” AIDB President Dr. John Mascia said. “Drivers, teams and racing industry leaders have been invaluable partners with us for many years in finding innovative ways to get to the ‘winner’s circle.’ We appreciate this gift and the support of the Tony Stewart Foundation.”
Contact Shane Dunaway at firstname.lastname@example.org.