New organization to focus on special needs kids

Published 2:09 pm Friday, October 10, 2008

Children with special needsl soon wil receive help from a new organization that is also looking for volunteers.

The Pearl River County Volunteer Organization for Special Needs is looking for people who would like to donate their time, energy and, in the future, money, to raise awareness to help children with autism and other developmental disabilities.

PRCVOSN Founder and president Jamie Mitchell said the organization’s first meeting will be held at the Picayune Shoney’s party room on Friday at 7 p.m.

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“We’re still in the infancy stage, but we’re looking for people who know how to write grants and apply for non-profit status,” Mitchell said.

The newly formed organization also is looking for any number of other volunteers, such as a secretary and a treasurer. Without non-profit status, Mitchell said the organization can not accept monetary donations, but they can take material donations.

Since the organization has been approved to participate in the upcoming Civic Woman’s Club Christmas parade, Mitchell is looking for stuff to decorate their still to be constructed float. So far, two people have indicated they will donate a truck and trailer for the parade, but Mitchell said she needs lights and other decorations for the float.

After accomplishing the short-term goals of getting a non-profit identification number and applying for some grants, Mitchell said her long term-goals include participation in the Spring Street Fair, holding a fund-raiser night at a local restaurant and building a special needs playground complete with wheelchair access.

“We desperately need a playground for all children in our community because we don’t have anything like that,” Mitchell said.

Mitchell is the mother of a five-year old boy with autism who regularly attends public school through a kindergarten inclusion class.

Anyone interested in volunteering can attend the meeting Friday night, or call 601-347-5706 or 601-749-4154 or email at