All About Developmental Disabilities (AADD), an Atlanta-based advocacy group focusing on developmental disabilities issues, launches the new season in April of their bocce league for young adults in Roswell, Sandy Springs, Woodstock and Johns Creek. The program connects people with developmental disabilities to those without, in the 20 to 30 age range.
The AADD Bocce Ball league is seeking participants to play games and model good social skills for these young people with developmental disabilities.
After graduating from high school at age 21, young people with developmental disabilities very often become socially isolated as their high school friends head off to college or careers, explained Michael Stinson, AADD’s manager of recreation and wellness. By age 25, their social network has often all but vanished.
“It is so important for them to have opportunities to interact with people their own age, because that brings them back into the community.” He adds, “For people without disabilities, this is a chance for them to give back to their communities and build their own awareness of the challenges faced by those who live with disabilities.”
With that in mind, Stinson says the most important thing about the playing isn’t the final score, but the camaraderie and fellowship that develops from working on a team together. He stresses that peer participants are crucial to the success of the program, anticipating that they will comprise about 60 percent of each group.
About the Bocce Ball League
- Preferred age range for participants is 18-30
- There will be 16-20 people per group
- Each “season” will be about six months. Groups meet twice a month for an hour and a half.
- Peer participants will be offered a brief training on developmental disabilities
- Cost: Free
- To register, email AADD at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (404) 881-0920
- Facebook: AADD Bocce, https://www.facebook.com/search/keyword/?q=aadd%20bocce
Thanks to partners Brio Tuscan Grill Sandy Springs, City of Johns Creek Recreation and Parks, Cherokee Recreation and Parks Agency, and the Roswell Recreation, Parks, Historic & Cultural Agency, AADD is able to offer four leagues throughout the metro area:
- Grimes Bridge Park, 830 Grimes Bridge Road, Roswell, GA 3007
- Thursdays, 6:30 - 8 p.m.
- April 3, April 17, May 15, May 29, June 12, June 26, July 10, July 24, Aug. 7, Aug. 21, Sept. 4 and Sept. 18
- BRIO Tuscan Grill, 700 Ashwood Parkway, Dunwoody, GA 30338
- Saturdays, 10 - 11:30 a.m.
- April 5, April 19, May 17, May 31, June 14, June 28, July 12, July 26, Aug. 9, Aug. 23, Sept. 6, and Sept. 20
- J.J. Biello Park, 250 Brooke Blvd., Woodstock, GA 30188
- Thursdays, 6:30 - 8 pm
- April 10, April 24, May 8, May 22, June 5, June 19, July 17, July 31, Aug. 14, Aug. 28, Sept. 11 and Sept. 25
- Park Place at Newtown Park, 3150 Old Alabama Road, Johns Creek, GA 30022
- Tuesdays, 6:30 - 8 pm
- April 15, April 29, May 13, May 27, June 10, June 24, July 8, July 22, Aug. 5, Aug. 19, Sept. 2, and Sept. 16
All About Developmental Disabilities
Founded in 1956, All About Developmental Disabilities (AADD) is an Atlanta-based non-profit organization dedicated to creating lifelong support, education and opportunities for children, adults and families living with developmental disabilities. AADD provides support services, advocacy and training to families living with developmental disabilities.
Developmental disabilities are defined as severe chronic disabilities that limit three or more critical functional abilities. Examples include Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, spina bifida, autism disorders, fetal alcohol disorders and intellectual disability. These disabilities often manifest early in life (before age 22) and last a lifetime.
Georgia relies on a disjointed system of services and support that cannot be sustained long-term. Economic uncertainties are reducing funding support, even as the number of people in need increases. AADD offers a range of services focusing on Family Support, Public Policy and Advocacy and Community Engagement. For more information, go to www.AADD.org or call us at (404) 881-9777.