by  / The Independent.

It is the hope and responsibility of every parent to ready their children to become independent, contributing members of the community.

“For REACH families, this is tenfold,” said Tamy Ratto, board member of REACH (Resources Education Activities Community and Housing) for Special Adults of the Tri-Valley. “Over the past two decades REACH has made it possible for countless individuals to live independently in a community they would not otherwise be able to afford. Many of these individuals were born and raised in the Tri-Valley where their families still reside. Being able to remain in the community you identify with provides a sense of security to both the tenant and family, slowly bridging the hope of independence.”

“REACH for the Stars,” a 25th anniversary celebration and fundraiser, took place on the evening of October 5th at the Castlewood Country Club in Pleasanton. More than 120 attendees gathered to recognize and support the efforts of the nonprofit whose mission is to enhance the quality of life for people with developmental disabilities by offering resources encompassing housing, education, activities, and community participation.

“This event was an intimate gathering,” said REACH Chair Kay King. “The beautiful evening was conducive to socializing, allowing a lovely reunion among former board members, and presentations of proclamations and resolutions from elected officials who attended. Many guests also had the first-time opportunity to meet some of the REACH tenants and Special Olympic athletes.”

REACH collaborated with Futures Explored, Inc. whose Inclusion Films program provides developmentally disabled individuals with opportunities to work in film production. The program’s participants created a six-minute video that premiered during the evening’s program.

“The video was impactful as it highlighted several tenants who are successfully living independently,” said King. “REACH has been verbally sharing these successes for 25 years, but this was the first time a large gathering ‘saw’ the significance and importance of REACH housing for adults with developmental disabilities.”

REACH maintains nine homes in the Tri-Valley, serving 26 people with disabilities that range from cerebral palsy and Down syndrome to autism. The REACH for the Stars event raised more than $50,000 which will help the organization provide more housing options.

Read More on The Independent