As the children arrive at Roundup Fellowship, they are greeted with brightly painted walls that proudly display the children’s work. Each face has a smile on it and everyone gives an enthusiastic hello. One key phrase at Roundup is peace (with the hand gesture) and everyone gives lots of high-fives for encouragement for one another. The children are ready for class. When making the best choices for a child with a disability there are times that families are faced with very difficult decisions. Where does a child with a severe disability receive their Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) if their behaviors are too extreme for the public schools to appropriately handle?
An Alternative to Public School
Roundup Fellowship is a beautiful and friendly alternative placement school that a child with a dual diagnosis from 8 to 21 may attend to have their needs met while assuring that the child is receiving a FAPE in accordance with IDEA. In Roundup’s Day Treatment Program children with disabilities receive instructional and therapeutic learning and an IEP is followed the same as with general education schools. The children are provided with therapies such as speech as well as receiving a wide variety of accommodations, modifications or assistive technologies as the IEP calls for. Additionally, the child with a disability will receive behavior management, life-skills, and many other areas to nurture healthy development throughout the child with a disabilities’ life.
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Roundup Fellowship’s mission is to serve children and adults who have developmental disabilities – recognizing their worth, affirming their contributions, and promoting dignity in all relationships.
Roundup Fellowship is a Colorado nonprofit organization providing programs and services for people with autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy and similar intellectual and developmental disabilities. We are devoted to caring for the needs of more than 100 individuals and families every day. We operate 4 intensively-staffed teaching homes/2 adult group homes in Denver and 2 children’s group homes in Colorado Springs, a school/day-treatment for children in Colorado Springs, a community participation program for adults in both Denver and Colorado Springs, supported-living apartments for adults in Denver, a transitional program for individuals aging out of publicly funded programming in Colorado Springs and supported employment and job development services in Denver.
We see those in our care as having the same basic needs and feelings that any person has. We challenge and aid each individual to develop physically, emotionally, socially and spiritually, so that they may acquire the attitudes, habits and skills necessary to function in society.
Our clientele’s disabilities transcend racial, ethnic, educational, social and economic differentiators. Most have substantial, long-term needs for assistance with normal, day-to-day activities of life. Many suffer from dual diagnosis (mental or physical impairments compounded by mental health issues). Our clients are highly susceptible to abandonment, crimes, homelessness, poverty and abuses. For many Roundup Fellowship is the first place in their life where individuals with special needs can learn to trust others and be treated with the dignity and respect they deserve.
Roundup School is a multi-grade Special Education School designed for youth ages 6 to 21. Children are referred to Roundup School by Colorado School Districts when they have had negative experiences in their previous educational environment, or they may have been out of school for an extended period of time due to difficult behaviors. We help children adjust to their new classroom and school environment while addressing any concerns they many have with feeling that they have failed in other educational settings. We work towards building trust and respect, helping children feel safe and confident in their surroundings so that academic improvement and progress can be achieved. At Roundup School we understand that there are no quick fixes to living with a disability, and we strive to help teach, support, and provide opportunities for children attending our school to become part of their own community and to find meaningful and gainful employment post graduation.
Focus on Technology Campaign- Improving and updating teaching software and hardware for Roundup School.
A large part of our curriculum is developed to help students understand their interactions with others, their own behavior and how their behavior affects others around them. The more students with autism, Down syndrome and similar diagnosis can understand their own disability and how to use the amazing technological tools available today, the more successful they will be as they move on to the next grade and as functional members of our community. Roundup School’s greatest need at this time is updated technology. We need laptop computers and specific software like Skills Tutor – a comprehensive student improvement program that removes limitations on learning with targeted differentiated instruction. Read more >>
At Roundup, we take pride in the relationships we have with the people we serve and support. One of those people, Tony Jackson, came to our agency at the age of 7. Tony had been in the state system since he was an infant. When our state began deinstitutionalizing children in the mid 1970’s, Roundup was asked to open a home for children with developmental disabilities. Roundup answered this need and continued to open more homes for children with disabilities over the next several years.
Tony is the person Roundup has supported the longest. He is a part of the Roundup family, living today at our Evan’s House and attending Roundup’s Community Participation Program.
Anyone who has ever met Tony knows what a joyful heart he has. He is always ready to greet you with a giant smile and a high five. Some of his favorite activities involve sound and movement. Tony loves trains, planes and buses. He loves to go places. He loves music and singing. He has a keen sense of hearing and identifies many things by their sounds. Tony does the best impressions of animal sounds that I have ever heard. I think back to the 1980’s and the time we took Tony camping with some of our friends. We all had such an awesome time. We had a contest around the campfire making animal noises. Tony won hands down! He is a joy to know and I feel very blessed to have been a part of his life these many years.
– Mary Anaya
Some of the boys at Monaco House have had the opportunity to become more active in the community by going to The Gym on Broadway! Chris Williamson, the owner and head personal trainer of The Gym, has generously donated his time, facility, and energy to help our guys stay active. During a personal training session, staff member Brianna Makowka learned Chris had extensive experience working with children with Autism. Chris offered to work with the kids of Monaco House on a weekly basis, and they have now been working out for two months! At The Gym, Chris focuses to improve balance, hand-eye-coordination, strength training and nutrition. The boys enjoy using the elliptical, participating in obstacle courses and even bonding with Chris and his dog Sam. The tools and skills learned at The Gym have transferred over to activities at the house. Best of all the boys have grown in their social skills and improved their overall health. We really appreciate Chris and The Gym and look forward to more fun!
My son was severely autistic by age 3. Completely non-verbal, except for the near-constant shreiking and chanting sounds. No communication what-so-ever. We moved to California, so he could be in a special program for kids like him when he was 3 years old, and he attended the program for 30 hours a week. At age 5, after 2 years in the program, he had made little progress (we thought!) Then suddenly one day, he spoke. He pointed and said “GO!” Over and over he repeated himself, until the light turned green, and the car started moving.
Three months later, he was putting words together to make small sentences, like “pick a berry” and “find it.” By the end of the year, he was able to write his name on the chalkboard. But here is the interesting part: Even though he never spoke a word and never gave any indication of understanding speech at all, until he was 5, by the time he was 8, he was able to talk about things that he remembered from when he was 2 and 3 years old. Like our old house in Idaho, with the purple kitchen, where we lived until he turned 3. One time when he was 8, he talked about a “sandwich fish” at the “snake store” in the mountains….o.k…?… huh? Read more >>
Roundup Fellowship was recently invited to partner with a non-profit organization that serves people who are refugees, new to the Denver area. Run by Pastor Joseph Nsabimbona and his wife, Angeline Habonimana, the agency – A La Source Refugee Ministry – serves newcomers to our country. Joseph and his wife have a personal connection to refugees. They escaped the genocide in their home country of Burundi a number of years ago. They know what it is like to be in a new country as a refugee.
In our partnership, Roundup Fellowship will be allowing local refugees to come to Roundup as a training site for employment. With the support of A La Source, individuals will be able to train to become a housekeeper or a direct care counselor. The opportunity will provide Roundup a new source for employees. Roundup will be a supportive job site for newcomers to the United States who are often fearful and unaccustomed to our culture.
It will be amazing to see how our staff can make an impact on the lives of new Americans in our city. These refugees often have emotional and physical disabilities from the trauma they have experienced in their war torn homelands. Like the individuals we support in our residential programs, refugees have the need for dignity, respect and an opportunity to give back to their community. Roundup continues to serve “the least of these” with this newest opportunity. For more information on A La Source please visit their website at http://alasourcerefugeeministry.com/.
Beginning now through April 30, 2014 Roundup Fellowship is partnering with Concerts for Kids to increase awareness and raise funds through a simple contest called “Million For What Matters.” The winner will receive a brand new Ford Mustang.
All you have to do is purchase a ticket for $10 and guess the total weight of the Austin Young Band including their instruments. If your guess comes the closest to the actual weight, you’ll win a brand new Ford Mustang provided by Sill-TerHar Motors. 100% of all funds generated through Roundup Fellowship’s ticket sales will be distributed back to us by CBIZ and FirstBank.
Tickets are sold for $10 each and every ticket purchased buys one guess. By purchasing a ticket, you can show your support for Roundup Fellowship and have a chance to win a white 2014 Ford Mustang! The closest guess will take home the Mustang, donated generously by Sill-TerHar Motors, Inc. The winner will be announced at Denver Day of Rock on May 24, 2014 on the Main Stage.
How many tickets would you like to purchase? Contact Danni at 303-353-8312 or firstname.lastname@example.org to purchase your tickets.
Our son, normal at birth but profoundly brain damaged from a case of Spinal Meningitis at the age of 3 months, had now just turned 16. He had become unmanageable from self-injurious behavior and we were unable to keep him safe from himself. He had stabilized some, but not enough. We were told that to get a placement for him, we’d have to abandon him at the hospital. Just not show up to pick him up. Really? Sometimes the system makes no sense. Read more >>
Each year for the past 40 years, the staff puts on a Thanksgiving dinner for the clients. For the Roundup Fellowship homes, the staff prepare a delicious home-cooked traditional dinner, receiving assistance from some of the residents during preparation. This meal provides Roundup residents and staff the opportunity to enjoy and celebrate the holiday together. “For some, this may be the only Thanksgiving dinner that they have,” Stacy Gulmantovicz, Denver Division Director, said of the event. “Some of our residents don’t have a family to celebrate with and after a certain time we are their family.”
At our Quivas House five of our residents have enjoyed this tradition together for tweny-five years! Malcolm loves to help cook, Ronnie and Joe help clean and everyone loves to eat! Read more >>