The California-Hawaii Elks Major Project, affectionately known as Purple Pig pledges its commitment to addressing the unmet needs of disabled children throughout the states of California and Hawaii by developing a program of supporting services to aid these children at no cost to the families and without discrimination.
John is an awesome almost two year old boy with an amazing family and a promising future. Pregnancy is often a time filled with excitement and anticipation of a new family member about to enter this world. When Shelby was pregnant with John, her third child, she received the news that John had a chromosome anomaly called partial Trisomy 16p. All they heard was "super rare" baby and "status unknown''. At that time the family began a journey that was not quite what they were expecting, venturing into the new normal of being a family with a special needs child. After researching the diagnosis they understood that John was likely to have some delays in his development along with some other health challenges. Surrounded by a strong family and friend support system, Shelby and Chuck forged ahead and educated themselves as much as possible, not exactly sure what the future would look like for John. Very excited about his arrival they prepared his siblings and decorated the nursery. On May 27, 2016 John was born just a few weeks early. He spent three and half weeks in the neonatal intensive care unit. John was soon discharged home with his family, only to return to the PICU two weeks later to discover major feeding issues and a diagnosis of Hypotonia. Early on one of the more significant issues John had to deal with was Hypotonia. This means that he had low muscle tone which affected the strength throughout his body which in turn would affect his ability to reach his motor milestones in a timely manner. Not about to let anything stand in the way of John's development, Shelby and Chuck sought out physical therapy for John. John began receiving physical therapy through the California-Hawaii Elks Major Project in his home when he was just 10 months old. The connections between John and his therapists have been amazing. John may not be able to speak but he communicates in different ways about his own physical abilities and shows his own progress daily. Through the love and generous support of the Elks, children like John are getting much needed physical therapy so they can play, explore and be as independent as possible in their lives. Each and every one of you is making a meaningful difference in the lives of these children and their families. Fast forward to today and John is attending preschool two days per week. He is pulling to stand by himself, cruising along furniture and walking with assistance. There is no stopping him now!
The members of Elks #6 hold a special passion for this project. If you join us for Sunday Breakfast we hope you will contribute to our Purple Pig so that children like John can Walk, Talk, See, and Play.