Point/Arc celebrates capital campaign kickoff; no dry eyes after touching stories from families

By Andy Furman

There was hardly a dry-eye in the entire house. And that was because each and every attendee at The Point/Arc’s Capital Campaign Kickoff Dinner was so very thankful for how the 52-year-old non-profit organization has touched their lives. Some 250 friends, donors and members of The Point/Arc family shared stories – and dinner – at Turfway Park’s Event Center.

“It was a dinner,” said Dave Meyer, board chairman for The Point/Arc, “to basically acquaint people with The Point/Arc and what we do; and an opportunity to expose us in a greater way to the general public.”

Judi Gerding reports to the friends of Point/Arc. (Photo provided)

Mission accomplished.

And it was a night to thank the people who have supported The Point/Arc in the past. But more than all that, it proved to be an evening in which families opened their hearts and explained how The Point/Arc changed their lives.

First, there was board member Paula Miller who spoke of her brother Tom – a wheelchair CP patient.

“The worst thing our parents have ever done,” she said, holding back tears, “was dropping Tom off for care in a home in Owensboro years ago.. .We met with Judi (Gerding), president of The Point and she promised us she would bring Tom home.”

She did. Today Tom is living in The Point/Arc’s Hancock Home – one of 18 residential homes owned and operated by the non-profit organization.

John and June Farrell – parents of twin girls Katie and Diane – said last September 30th was a “Blessed Day” for them. That’s the day both girls moved into a residential home – together – right near the Farrell’s Edgewood residence. Both girls were diagnosed with Fragile X Syndrome — a genetic condition.

“The girls love it,” the parents said, “They’re involved with special dances, basketball as well as well as music which they love. We thank God daily for what The Point/Arc does and for whom they serve.”

Scott and Tina Spivey related to the assembled group how a parent reacts when a child is diagnosed with Autism.

“When a child has an allergy,” Scott explained, “You see a specialist; and he’ll explain how to advance the physical ailment. With Autism, besides being devastated with the news; well, what do you do.?”

He said there is no playbook from a doctor.

“As a parent,” he continued, “We asked what are we going to do.”

That’s when The Point/Arc entered the picture, he said.

“Again, it was Judi (Gerding) to the rescue,” Tina added. “We were told we’d have to wait some six months to enter Children’s Hospital for exams. Judi got us in for testing in about two weeks.”

Today, the Spivey’s said, their son (Zach) is seeking jobs, getting resume help with a goal of employment thanks to the staff at The Point/Arc.

Tony Maynard’s story brought the Event Center audience to a stand-still.

“Our child has Rett Syndrome,” he said, “And when I lost my wife last January, well, I didn’t know how I could care for her myself.”

Rett Syndrome is a rare genetic mutation affecting brain development for girls.

Thank you, The Point/Arc.

It was a bus driver from The Point/Arc’s Scheben Center, who tied the bow around the family presentations.

“I see the interactions between staff and clients daily,” said driver Mike Shumate, who began driving for the Center in December. “I see the out-pouring of affection, the meaningful relationships, it is so genuine.”

Judi Gerding, founder and president of The Point/Arc said, “This night was a celebration for the people before us, as well as for everyone in this room; and for those individuals who will benefit from your gifts.

“What we will always strive for at The Point/Arc,” she continued, “To serve all that need; and eliminate waiting lists.

“It’s always Mission First – and money will follow.”

It certainly has.

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