Sunday, September 26, 2010

Learning to Socialize

SAN ANTONIO, Texas -- The gym is festooned with balloons. The DJ plays dance songs both old and ancient, including the inevitable "YMCA." And among those who've ventured onto the dance floor, a young man named Kyle, dressed in a white three-piece suit, does a pretty mean Michael Jackson impression, complete with twirls, finger snaps and wooos!
But for the fact that most of the attendees have some type of developmental disability — autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy — the Fall Into Fall dance could have been held at any high school in the country.
But it's not the dance that's the point here. Instead, it's one more effort to get those with disabilities out into the community, where they can both learn to socialize and simply have a good time.
"There aren't many opportunities for the developmentally disabled to socialize," said Christiane Perkins-Garcia, co-founder and board member of Eva's Heroes, which put on the dance.

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