Personal Stories of Hope

"Teachers & therapists love the work they do"

Stories of Hope, elleMeet our Elle.  Born in June 2010, Elle was six weeks early and spent almost two weeks in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit learning to eat properly and gain weight.  At six months, we began noticing Elle was not meeting typical goals, like rolling over.  At 14 months, Elle still wasn't pulling up or talking, so we contacted Tennessee's Early Intervention System (TEIS) who said Elle had a Global Development Delay and recommended High Hopes.

Elle began physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy weekly at High Hopes' Therapy Clinic at 16 months of age.  Shortly after, Elle began attending High Hopes' Preschool and it was the best thing we could have done for her!  No test, to date, has been able to explain Elle's developmental delays, but we are happy to report that the teacher and therapist collaboration at High Hopes has made a hugely positive impact on Elle's development.  She is walking and will be running in no time!  She can feed herself and is understanding and communicating more each day, thanks to all the work of the High Hopes staff.  Everyone at High Hopes knows Elle by name and loves her.  The teachers and therapists have a special place in their hearts for the work they do and we just can't say enough about how High Hopes has helped our little doodle bug!

Learning to "eat like a boss!" ~ Anaya

Anaya, Stories of HopeAnaya came home from Arkansas at 15 months old.  She had the most vibrant personality and we were smitten with her immediately!  At 15 months, she had never eaten food orally, nor even knew what that required.  She had a feeding tube as her main source of nutrition.

We had a friend recommend High Hopes and we began seeing a feeding therapist there.  The feeding therapist was so sweet and patient with us as we learned how to teach this phenomenon we call "eating."  We worked together empowering Anaya to do it and she made incredible improvement!  After 6 months at High Hopes Anaya became completely independent of the tube.  Within one year of  Anaya being home, she had her tube out and was doing amazingly.  We're so grateful for the therapists at High Hopes and their help and guidance with Anaya's eating.  Now, when dinner is over she asks with the biggest smile, "Did I eat like a boss?" and she knows the answer, which is often "YES!"

Miracles Delivered through High Hopes ~ Caleb

Caleb, Stories of HopeCaleb was born a perfectly healthy little boy July 11, 2012.  Two weeks later our world was turned upside down when he developed bacterial meningitis.  This  journey resulted in a month-long stay at Vanderbilt and life-long effects for Caleb of significant frontal lobe brain damage and risk of seizures.

Caleb is our little fighter and has always had several guardian angels watching over him.  We came home from the hospital with no idea whether our son would walk, talk, eat well, or function as a typically-developing child.  We only knew we wanted to provide him with the best resources possible.  We sincerely believe it was one of those guardian angels who led us to be introduced to High Hopes.

Caleb began attending High Hopes Preschool five days a week in October 2012 at 3 months of age.  It is hard for us to explain the support we have received from this organization.  Despite all odds, Caleb is a thriving and rambunctious toddler!  He definitely still experiences challenges, but High Hopes is always there for us.  His doctors can only explain some of his abilities as miracles.  We agree and we believe that God uses our High Hopes family to help deliver these miracles.

A Journey of Success ~ Caroline

Our journey with High Hopes began in January 2006.  After relocating to Nashville, we were looking for a place for daycare and therapy for our then eight-month old daughter, Caroline, who was born with Down syndrome.  What we found in High Hopes was so much more.

Because of its unique setting, High Hopes has provided Caroline with a nurturing and caring atmosphere where she not only has gone to school, but also has received the many therapies she needs to thrive.  It gave us the comfort of knowing she was being cared for by compassionate teachers and therapists in a safe environment.  It was important that what Caroline was learning and working on in her Physical, Occupational, and Speech therapies was being carried over into the classroom environment.  This consistency has made a tremendous difference in the progress Caroline continues to make at High Hopes.

In May 2008, we began Caroline's transition to the public school environment and took her out of High Hopes for several months.  While she continued to make progress in this new school, we noticed a difference in the quality of the environment she was now in, day-to-day.  This led us to the decision to bring Caroline back to High Hopes and split her time between her special education classroom at our local public school and High Hopes.  This gives Caroline the best of both worlds.  We couldn't ask for a better set up.

From a tragic beginning to a hopeful future: Meet Grayson

Grayson, Stories of HopeGrayson was born with an addiction to drugs, alcohol, and tobacco.  His withdrawals were so severe, he was in the hospital for three and a half months and was considered one of the worst cases of withdrawals that the nurses at Vanderbilt had ever seen.   As a result of his birth circumstances, Grayson often experienced respiratory distress and was diagnosed as significantly developmentally delayed.

At 7 months, Grayson began receiving Physical, Occupational, Speech and Feeding therapies at The Therapy Clinic at High Hopes.  His therapists encouraged and supported the family while working to overcome so many obstacles and celebrated alongside them when they were able to legally adopt Grayson.  After his 2nd birthday, Grayson enrolled in The Preschool at High Hopes.  It was there that he found a loving, educational environment and learned social skills with his peers.  Weekly therapy appointments transformed him from "developmentally delayed" to a typical, active, curious, busy toddler.

Now age three, he no longer needs his feeding tube and continues to meet his age appropriate milestones.  Grayson is a living testament to the life-changing services that High Hopes provides for children in need.


Meet Hatcher

Hatcher, Stories of HopeHigh Hopes changes lives. My son, Hatcher, came to High Hopes at age one with Down syndrome and leukemia, unable to walk or talk. As a divorced mom with the responsibility of two older children and a baby that required multiple treatments and medical appointments, I could not work outside our home and applied for food stamps just to feed my children.

When we arrived at High Hopes, we found help, encouragement, and hope. To me, what sets High Hopes apart is that I never asked for help.  High Hopes teachers and therapists reached out to me and asked what they could do. High Hopes found a private donor to fund Hatcher’s tuition and specialized glasses. When Hatcher went into remission and his immune system strengthened, he enrolled in morning and aftercare, and I looked for a job.

Through High Hopes’ education and therapy, Hatcher, now age four, socializes, walks, and communicates using words and sign language. I accepted a full-time position with another nonprofit agency. Since my employment, I paid down my credit, got off food stamps, and even qualified for a home loan. High Hopes has truly blessed my family.

- Jennifer Schultz, High Hopes Parent

  • Upcoming Events

    1. Sensory Friendly Movie- “Despicable Me 3”

      July 1 @ 10:00 am - 11:30 am
    2. SPIRIT DAY at High Hopes

      July 20
    3. SPIRIT DAY at High Hopes

      August 16
  • Testimonials

    "Teachers & therapists love the work they do"

    Stories of Hope, elleMeet our Elle.  Born in June 2010, Elle was six weeks early and spent almost two weeks in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit learning to ea...

    Read More Testimonials »

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