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​​​October 3,  2014

Arc of SC, Midlands have much to share from The Arc’s 2014 National Convention!

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The Arc of the Midlands’ Melinda Moore and The Arc of SC’s Margie Williamson made a lot of connections and brought back quite a bit of useful information from The Arc’s National Convention this week in New Orleans.

This year’s convention had so many programs and break-out sessions designed to inform and stimulate new discussions. There was also a self-advocacy symposium and last year’s attendees shared progress about their programs. Melinda and Margie are ready to share lots of ideas with South Carolina!


Get involved in one of these exciting activities meant to move and groove you!

Girls on the Run: This program is for girls in third through eighth grade and allows them to be active and learn confidence. Girls on the Run is partnering with The Arc of the Midlands and are looking for girls, volunteers and mentors to join their team. For more information, contact Audrey Thompson or call her at 803-381-0482.

Kick-It Karate: The Arc of the Midlands collaborated with East West Team Martial Arts and the SC Developmental Disabilities Council to offer a free 12-week orientation/white belt karate program for people with special needs so they can integrate into mainstream programs. The program is on Saturdays. For more information, send an e-mail to

Basketball: Shoot some hoops for Carolina Courage Basketball. The 2014-15 season starts with a first meeting/practice game Nov. 2, 2014. All parents/guardians should be at Seven Oaks Park at 3 p.m. for the first meeting. The first practice game follows the meeting from 4:30-6 p.m. For more information call Coach Tim Graves at 803-237-8241.

Zumba: Dance and have fun Oct. 18 from 10 a.m. until noon at the Phillips Market Center  at the SC Farmer’s Market and support a Lana Swancey. For more information, visit Lana’s fundraising page or e-mail

Walk with Ease: Take a stroll and get healthy every Saturday at the Canal and Riverfront Park, 312 Laurel St., Columbia. For more information, e-mail Melinda.


Welcome Sandi and Joyce!

Sandi Batten and Joyce Deveaux are our newest employees and excited to help people with I/DD gain fulfilling employment. Both ladies bring energy and experience as supported employment specialists and we’re thrilled to have them onboard.

Joyce was most recently with USC’s CarolinaLIFE program as an employment coordinator and has a wealth of education, coaching, counseling and case management experience. CarolinaLIFE helps students with intellectual and cognitive disorders succeed at USC.

In addition to working at CarolinaLIFE, she has also worked in behavioral science and neuropsychiatry department at USC as well as American Red Cross. There’s a lot of experience she will bring to helping people with I/DD get a job and succeed at it. Contact Joyce at

“As a dedicated mother of two boys on the autism spectrum, my life’s mission has been advocating for them and working every day to make sure they live life to their fullest potential. Since my oldest was diagnosed 10 years ago, I have worked tirelessly to learn the principals of ABA and apply it to every aspect of our daily lives.
I work hand in hand with the boy’s teachers and therapists, mentor and support other special needs parents, and enjoy volunteering my time to enrich the lives of those with special needs. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to join the team at the Arc of the Midlands and begin working with young adults as they transition into the working world!
God has truly blessed me with this opportunity to make a difference and change lives, I can’t wait to experience the joy of watching these young people become employed and experience the pride that comes with earning their first paycheck. (My briefcase is already stocked with Kleenex.)” Contact Sandi at

Get spooked this Halloween, Fall fun!

–Kick off fall and have fun at the October Festival at Lake Carolina’s Green across from 212 Eascott Place, Columbia, 29229. All proceeds support special needs families and go to the Abundant Life Equipment Lending Library so kids can have access to wheelchairs, walkers, standers, etc. There’s a fun mie loop for children, a bike race, pumpkin festival, music, pinatas, food, vendors and you can check out a special needs swing. For more information, call 803-720-52440 or

— ​​Don your scariest or most fun costume at the Spook-tacular Halloween party on Oct. 31 from 6-8 p.m. at Columbia Church, 220 N. Royal Tower Dr., Irmo, 29063.

— The Arc of SC has a Rec-Connect/ArcWorks program with a variety of events to enjoy this Fall and anytime of the year! Go bowling at JC’s Lexington Bowl in Lexington on Wednesday nights, hit the skating rink Saturday mornings at Skate Station USA in Lexington, attend one of the many festivals or learn a new sport or trade. The opportunities are endless. For more information about getting involved and staying active, contact Carolina at or call her at 803-748-5020, ext. 3.

–Family Connections SC is sponsoring a fall festival — Festival de Otono — Oct. 29 at 6:30 p.m. in Camden. The location address is 814 Fair Street, Camden.


Plant Yourself Cola wants you!

The Mixed Greens team wants you and your service. Volunteer in a multitude of ways. An easy way to get started is with the Plant Yourselfproject.
The teams hits the Northeast Farmer’s Market at Lake Carolina Oct. 9 and 16 from 3-7 p.m. Socialize and inform others about The Arc and what we do. In case you need a break or treat, there’s an ice cream shop and a coffee shop across the street in the Lake Carolina neighborhood! There will be live music at the Oct. 9 event.
Get excited! Plant Yourself returns to Soda City on Oct. 11 from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. This is a busy farmer’s market in the heart of downtown Columbia at the 1500 block of Main Street. This is a super fun event and so many vendors and people to interact with in a safe and family friendly environment. On certain days, there’s even FREE yoga if you come before the market starts. Yoga is great for everyone!
For more information, contact Natalie at or call her at 803-479-8773.


​​Do you know of someone with I/DD with a story to tell?
Let us know about someone in your community that has an intellectual or developmental disability who would provide for a great feature story. You can contact us at or natalie@arcmidlands.organd let’s show off their great abilities and personality.


Other Arc Midlands sponsored programs:
Mixed Greens is an awesome community gardens and projects group with fun and inclusive activities to be scheduled throughout the year
Walk with Ease – is about getting people in the community together to promote and increase physical activity and build new friendships. The program includes people with and without developmental and intellectual disabilities that walk with one another. It’s a great way for people to meet friends and stay active!  We offer structured 18 week programs onsite (schools and residential settings) and weekly Saturday walks.
Wings for Autism: The Arc of the Midlands in collaboration with The Arc of South Carolina, Pro Parents, and SC Autism society are planning to implement a Wings for Autism program in Augusta, GA and Columbia, SC in spring 2015. Wings for Autism® is an airport “rehearsal” specially designed for individuals with autism spectrum disorders and other intellectual and developmental disabilities, their families and aviation professionals.
NCCJD Chapter Champions for Justice:  Through this program, The Arc of the Midlands will help build the capacity of the criminal justice system to effectively identify, serve and protect people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD), many of whom have “mild” disabilities that often go unnoticed among criminal justice professionals without appropriate training.  Follow NCCJD on Facebook!
Project Search is a business-led collaboration that enables young adults with disabilities to gain and maintain employment through training and career exploration!  The Arc of the Midlands in partnership with the South Carolina Vocational Rehabilitation Department and Lexington School District 1 has been awarded a grant through the South Carolina Developmental Disabilities Council to develop a Project Search site in the Columbia area.

Happy Friday!

Hot Links:
  • Survey for Parents of children with I/DD: Take a few seconds and quickly fill out this anonymous survey  from The Arc of SC.

  • Have you liked us? Check out the Plant Yourself Facebook page.

  • Keep contacting your Senator about the Disability Treaty 2014. It’s down to the wire now. Check out our blogfor more information. Tweet and Facebook your support with #SC4CRPD and #CRPD.
  • Save the dates:
    Midlands Job FairOctober 10, 2014, sponsored by the Columbia Mayor’s Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities, SCWorks Midlands and the National Guard

    FASD Fall Conference October 17, 2014, sponsored by the SCFASD CollaborativeSouth Carolina Interagency Transition Conference
    November 17-18, 2014, Building Bridges:Constructing and Navigating Transition Services For Youth with Disabilities

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Department of Disabilities and Special Needs (DDSN) Recently Reviewed and/or Revised Directives and Policies:
The Arc of the Midlands 218-B East Main Street, Lexington, South Carolina 29072
Phone: 803-693-5746  |  Contact Us