Megan Eversole, a freshman pre-nursing major from Farmington, is volunteering by helping children with Down Syndrome at Children of Hope Academy. Photo by Misha Mosiichuk.
Dixie State University students have the opportunity to volunteer for those with special needs.
The Children of Hope Academy is a non-profit charitable corporation that assists parents with help for their special needs children. It provides the opportunity for their children to reach their full potential.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the academy has had a harder time recruiting new volunteers.
Sherri Dial, director at Children of Hope Academy, said: “At the moment we are all volunteer-based. We try to have a volunteer for each student and then we tell them to help students be excited about learning and help them work on their goals.”
Children of Hope Academy needs volunteers Mondays – Fridays from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Anyone who is looking for an opportunity to serve and be part of a community can come at any time for even just an hour once a week.
“I like to be close to Dixie so I can get volunteers from Dixie,” said Diana Wade, founder of Children of Hope Academy.
Wade knows there are students at DSU who can be volunteers. One way a student from DSU can volunteer is by conducting a cooking class every Friday for the students.
There is more than one service opportunity within the Children of Hope Academy. They are looking for students from DSU to help with yard care, social media, and working hand-in-hand with the special needs students.
From the beginning Children of Hope Academy has been helped by the service of the community.
“This school is the greatest story of service in the community that I’ve ever experienced,” Wade said.
According to Children of Hope Academy’s website, “The story of the Children of Hope Academy begins way back in 1976 when Diana and Alton Wade welcomed their beautiful daughter Cindy, who was born with Downs Syndrome, into the world.”
Wade started the Children of Hope Academy in her home with eight students. In 2010 the building that they are now located in was donated for Diana to continue teaching.
Companies and organizations throughout St. George stepped up to offer help in renovating the building at no charge. In order to continue to give learning opportunities for special needs, volunteers are a great need.
Students who are looking to volunteer have the opportunity to do so. As you serve at the Children of Hope Academy you will learn along with the students.
If you are interested in volunteering, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Children of Hope Academy is located at 1008 E 200 S.
“For a student to come and volunteer here they’d find out that they [special needs students] are growing,” Wade said. “Just watching them learn to do something that they couldn’t do before is so rewarding.”