While Apple Patch started as a grassroots effort, it has since evolved into a far-reaching, all-inclusive organization for individuals with disabilities. To learn more about what the nonprofit has in the works, we spoke with Director of Development Linda Romine.
HOW THEY HAVE GROWN
Apple Patch was started 30 years ago by a small group of concerned parents. “A generation ago, (these) parents had a vision for a better path forward for their children with disabilities centered around independent living and learning,” said Romine. “This vision became Apple Patch. Thirty years later, the organization’s services have expanded from a few group homes to include wait-listed residential, employment and community support programs.”
WHO THEY ARE HELPING
Since 1988, Apple Patch has grown into a system of services including 23 residences, four community engagement centers (day programs), a supported employment program and one-on-one support and case management. “We help people with intellectual and developmental disabilities lead fulfilling lives of inclusion in our community,” explained Romine. “We’re not just a place but a support system to help individuals live their best lives.”
Apple Patch supports more than 300 adults and school-aged children through residential options, clinical services, cutting-edge community engagement centers and a supported employment program. More than 100 volunteers of all ages provide help with tasks such as landscaping, painting and group activities including arts and crafts, sports and recreation and by hosting periodic, informal get-togethers for participants and staff.
NEW TO THE TEAM
In recent months, Apple Patch has added a slate of new board members, including several prominent members of Louisville’s business and philanthropy community: Benton Keith of Radicle Capital; Alex Campbell of Commonwealth Bank & Trust Co.; Erin Trager-Kusman of the SmartFlyer travel company; Nathan Fort of Fort Phelps PLLC; Chona Camamot of WeatherCheck; Jeremy White of Springdale Community Church; Ned Booker of Sterling Thompson Company; and Ross Jordan of Weller Equity Partners & Yearling Fund LP.
THE GIVE FOR GOOD GOAL
While taking part in Give For Good Louisville on Sept. 13, Apple Patch is preparing for a big day. “We have a celebration planned for our direct support professionals to thank them for their dedication to the people we support,” said Jennifer O’Bryan, the organization’s executive assistant, who took the lead on the nonprofit’s Give For Good participation in 2017. “There will be food, games, raffle prizes and plenty of fun for everyone on this giving day. We’ll be live streaming our event in conjunction with Give For Good Louisville to show our donors the support it takes to keep our organization going for another 30 years. In 2017, we raised close to $18,000, which is up from the $1,100 raised in 2016.”
Preparing for the 30th Anniversary Picnic
The 30th Anniversary Picnic, which is 1 to 5 p.m. Sept. 9 at Foxhollow Farm, will act as a fundraiser, with all proceeds going to Apple Patch and its efforts to provide support to people with disabilities. The picnic, which is open to the public, will also be a community celebration for Apple Patch’s 30-year history and offer a peek into its exciting future.
Community members are invited to join in the festivities, including delicious food from Duck Duck Beet, live music by Danny Flanigan and Delafaye, hayrides, face painting, inflatables, family musical activities, kids’ games and more. The $20 per vehicle parking pass includes a picnic meal of barbecue (beef, chicken or vegetarian), sweet-potato salad and mac & cheese; and $5 wristbands provide access to all activities. Passes may be purchased in advance at LouisvilleTickets.com.
“This picnic celebrates several exciting changes for Apple Patch, including new additions to the board of directors and the opening of an 8,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art community engagement center in Crestwood this fall,” affirmed Romine.
HOW WE CAN HELP
Romine advises that the community can help in three primary ways: giving, learning and engaging.
Give because every contribution makes a difference. Visit applepatch.org to donate. Learn by attending one of the free, hour-long Lunch & Learn sessions at 11:30 a.m. Oct. 3, Nov. 7 or Dec. 5. (Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org.) Finally, engage by advocating for people with disabilities. VT
7408 Hwy. 329, Crestwood
30th Anniversary Picnic Sponsors
Presenting Sponsor: Bob Ray Company
Commonwealth Bank & Trust Co.
Door Equipment Co.
Fastline Media Group
Key Homes, LLC
Popp Machine & Tool
Republic Bank & Trust
Old 502 Winery
LG&E and KU Energy
Strothman and Co.
Mile Wide Beer Co.