SPONSORED: Writing New Chapters: ACCESS Unveils $250,000 Challenge Grant, Setting Up Starry Starry Night Planning Committee for Success

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A successful story is made up of many chapters, and the chapters that shape every individual are all uniquely written. For individuals with special needs, those chapters aren’t always easy to write. That’s where ACCESS comes in, helping individuals with learning challenges and developmental disabilities during the chapters they need support most through evaluation services, full-time education, therapy, mental health services, vocational training, community integration and more.

Starry Starry Night: The 25th Chapter presented by Bank OZK, is ACCESS’s largest fundraiser of the year. The event boasts silent and live auctions, donation appeal, cocktails, dinner, entertainment and more, all while sharing with more than 250 guests the impact made by the organization in our local community. However, this year’s event has the opportunity to make the biggest impact yet to write the stories of success.

On this milestone year, the Starry Starry Night planning committee is excited to share that ACCESS has received a significant challenge grant opportunity in the amount of $250,000. Every dollar raised through the date of the event on Saturday, Oct. 28, will be matched dollar-for-dollar, doubling the impact supporters will make toward helping ACCESS serve its mission of expanding individual potential through innovative instruction to more than 900 clients every year.

“ACCESS is incredibly grateful for this extraordinary challenge grant,” says Tammy Simmons, executive director of ACCESS. “It’s a testament to the dedication and compassion of our supporters who understand the vital importance of the work we do. This grant will enable us to make an even more significant difference in the lives of those we serve.”

Funds raised through this challenge grant will help support ACCESS through individual initiatives such as the ongoing repair of tornado damage to the Stella Boyle Smith Early Childhood campus; new recreational, social and therapy spaces including a renewed outdoor tennis and play space and multiple sensory spaces; ACCESS Tuition Assistance Fund to help ACCESS Academy students receive the individualized special education they deserve no matter their  family’s financial ability; and growing recreational opportunities for adults with special needs in order to empower inclusion within our community.

“ACCESS helps parents navigate their way through whatever their child might need in an effort to have children succeed in education and in life,” explains Ashley Jones, Starry Starry Night committee member and ACCESS parent. “You might not have a child who is in need of services, but I would bet you know someone’s child who is. By supporting ACCESS through this challenge grant, you can be the voice they didn’t know they needed.”

Supporters may contribute toward the challenge grant any time between now and the close of the event on Oct. 28, by making a donation here. To discuss additional opportunities for support, contact ACCESS Director of Development Kellie Wilhite at kellie@accessgroupinc.org or 501.217.8600. To learn more about the 25th annual Starry Starry Night event, visit the event webpage.

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