Home' The River Weekly News : RWN 102315 Contents 21
THE RIVER - OCTOBER 23, 2015
by Shelley M.
school daughter has
an intellectual devel-
She is in special
classes, works very
hard at school and
loves it. Her school
will be having a Sadie Hawkins Party in
late November and she desperately wants
to participate. She has a few friends in
her special education class who also want
to attend. I want her to go and have
a good time, but I know that I need to
prepare her for this type of social event.
What kinds of things should I do to help
her learn how to feel more comfortable
at this party?
Katie V., Port Charlotte, Florida
Your daughter has clearly demon-
strated here that she is more similar to
her teen peers than different with her
desire to attend this social event. All teens
(and all people) have the need to belong,
connect and grow. Attending high school
events are part of the rites of passage
that transition teens to adulthood. As
adults, we want our children to progress
into their social lives with a minimum
of angst. While high school events and
parties are frequently mythologized by the
media with ideas of romance and popu-
larity however these events can also turn
out to be emotionally painful and socially
paralyzing. Giving your daughter the skills
she will need to negotiate her social life is
so very important for her success.
I would like to suggest that you form a
group with the parents of your daughter’s
classmates who also want to attend this
party and work together to help them
learn how to socialize appropriately.
Role-playing is a great way to learn the
social skills one would need for a party.
You may also want to enlist their teacher
for advice or suggestions on the most
important skills to address.
You will want to cover topics such as
how to say hello, make eye contact, and
participate in a back and forth conversa-
tion. These of course are skills that the
children have worked on throughout their
schooling but you may need to demon-
strate how they should be applied in a
social setting. New skills might include
learning how to ask someone to – or ac-
cept an invitation to dance, learning how
to touch someone appropriately when
dancing, and saying thank you when
the dance is over. These are not unique
behaviors but you will have to help your
daughter generalize them to the party
setting. If the party is not being help in a
familiar setting I would suggest that you
visit the venue ahead of time so she can
feel comfortable there.
Of course, the right clothing for high
school events is paramount. Perhaps you
could organize a shopping trip with a
couple of other students who could help
out with clothing choices. The school
counselor might be able to suggest some
fashion mavens who would enjoy going
shopping and helping out.
You maybe pushing your daughter a
bit outside her comfort zone so go slowly,
and be consistent in practicing these
skills. With good preparation I think both
of you will be very pleased when the
party is over.
Shelley Greggs is adjunct faculty
at Florida SouthWestern State Col-
lege, where she teaches psychology
and education courses. She is also a
nationally certified school psychologist
and consultant for School Consultation
Services, a private educational consult-
ing company. Questions for publication
may be addressed to smgreggs@gmail.
com. Not all questions submitted can
be addressed through this publication.
Fort Myers High
Alumni Fish Fry
Fort Myers High School will host
the annual Fort Myers High School
Alumni Fish Fry at the school on
Saturday, October 24. The event will be-
gin with an 11 a.m. welcome, with lunch
served at noon.
“There will be alumni from over the
years at the fish fry, as far back as the
graduating class of 1936,” said Stefanie
Ink-Edwards, Alumni Fish Fry coordinator.
“This gathering has become a family tra-
dition. Seeing older generations of alumni
having the opportunity to connect with
today’s alumni is so inspiring. Principal
David LaRosa will also be there to share
the current happening at the school.”
Cost to attend is $10 per person,
which covers the fried mullet, cheese
grits and hushpuppies, and attendees are
requested to bring a potluck dish to share.
Buy your tickets ahead of time by email-
ing Stefanieink@gmail.com, or purchase
tickets at the door.
Join fellow Fort Myers High School
Alumni for a day of good food and fel-
lowship. For more information, call 357-
6837 or email Stefanieink@gmail.com.
CMU Golf Team
Jamie Gisburne, a junior communica-
tions and computer sciences major
from Fort Myers, was named a mem-
ber of the golf team at Central Methodist
University in Fayette, Missouri.
Marshall Clinton, a resident of Fort
Myers, was among Southeast Mis-
souri State University’s summer
2015 graduates. Clinton graduated cum
laude with a bachelor of science degree in
Business Administration, with a major in
marketing: sales management option.
Oasis Charter School, Luau Of Life
Partner To Beat Childhood Cancer
For the second year in a row, Cape Coral’s Oasis Charter Elementary School has
once again signed on in support of the Luau of Life event, a fundraising effort
by parents of pediatric cancer patients to benefit Barbara’s Friends – Golisano
Children’s Hospital Cancer Fund – and Children’s Oncology Group, the world leader
in pediatric cancer research.
“Last year’s inaugural gala raised over $30,000, which is absolutely amazing to
me,” said Luau of Life chairperson, 14-year-old leukemia survivor Chansen Savakinus.
“We couldn’t have done it without the partnership with Oasis Charter Elementary
School so I am really excited that they are back.”
The school will raise money for this cause using tee shirt sales and a penny com-
petition among the classes. Oasis Charter School system has several children who are
cancer survivors including Chansen, who one year ago finished treatment for a second
time, suffering six fractures to his spine, a blood clot, stroke, plus losing three friends
to cancer. Chansen is all for making a difference and helping in such a way so that
other children do not have to go through what he did just to survive. Pediatric cancer
hits this school system close to its core and it is only natural for the two groups to
combine efforts to make a difference.
Barbara’s Friends provides lifesaving medical equipment and specially-trained
physicians, nurses and clinicians needed to help young patients from across Southwest
Florida win their battles with cancer and life-threatening blood disorders. All children
receive services regardless of their families’ ability to pay for care. The Pediatric He-
matology/Oncology Center at Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida, sup-
ported by Barbara’s Friends, is the only facility of its kind here in Southwest Florida.
Make plans now to attend the Luau of Life Gala on Saturday, March 19 at the
Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center in historic downtown Fort Myers. The event will
serve as a fundraiser and celebration for the hard work and fundraising efforts of Oasis
Charter Elementary School and scores of other donors, sponsors and businesses who
are stepping forward to support lifesaving pediatric cancer care right here in our com-
You can help, too. Donations and sponsorship commitments to help kids beat can-
cer can be made by visiting www.luauoflife.com. For more information, contact Sally
Wilson with Lee Memorial Health System Foundation at 343-6057 or Sally.Wilson@
The annual LCEC/United Way
Golf Tournament broke its record
this year, raising $51,000 for the
United Way of Lee, Hendry, Glades, and
Okeechobee Counties. The tournament
was held on October 3 at the Pelican
Preserve golf course in Fort Myers. Con-
gratulations to first place winners Zane
Taylor, Rodney Jamison, Jason Holley
and Dan O’Brien with Southeast Power.
LCEC wishes to thank all those who sup-
ported this tournament through sponsor-
ships, participation or volunteering.
For more information on LCEC’s
United Way Golf Tournament, visit www.
Dr. Tim Verwest, DMD, of Pedi-
atric Dentistry of Fort Myers will
sponsor the United Mitochondrial
Disease Foundation’s Energy for Life
Walkathon. The walkathon will be held
Saturday, November 14. UMDF will be
reaching out to the community to bring
awareness to mitochondrial diseases and
The Southwest Florida Group of the
UMDF will be hosting the Inaugural En-
ergy for Life Walkathon. This event will
be held at 8:30 a.m. on November 14 at
the Estero Recreation Center, located at
9200 Corkscrew Palms Blvd. in Estero.
Funds raised help bring awareness for
those fighting mitochondrial diseases in
“Not only as a parent, but as a
member of society I believe it is of utmost
importance to help raise awareness for
any type of disease or disorder,” said Dr.
Verwest. “At the end of the day, every
little bit counts.”
The mission of the walkathon and
UMDF is to promote research, education,
treatment and cure of the mitochon-
drial disorders and to provide support to
individuals and families affected by this
disease. The effects of the disease vary:
some suffer total debilitation where as
others lose the ability to see and hear. It
can be linked to Parkinson’s, diabetes and
For more information, visit www.
DrVerwest.com or call 482-2722.
From page 19
for those who live on the streets. This
challenge will provide participants with an
experience that has the power to effect
The Lee County Homeless Coalition
is a non-profit organization comprised of
community and faith-based service provid-
ers, local businesses, people who are
currently experiencing or who have expe-
rienced homelessness, and other advo-
cates committed to ending homelessness.
The Coalition’s mission is to advocate,
educate and promote awareness of issues
and obstacles facing homeless individu-
als in Lee County through community
collaboration, planning and implementing
To help or learn more, contact Janet
Bartos, executive director of the Lee
County Homeless Coalition, at 322-6600
or visit www.leehomeless.org.
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