I’m 19 and I’m Spending My Third Summer at a Camp for People with Special Needs: Here’s Why

Camp for People with Special Needs

Summer Camp, Special Needs, and a Reason to Return

Camp for people with special needsIf you’ve ever attended a summer camp, Easterseals Camp Merry Heart will be a familiar sight. You’ll find it has all the same amenities: cabins, a dining hall, forest trails, a lake… but if you take a closer look, you’ll spot some differences.

Read more

How I Make Accessible Trips from New Jersey to the Big Cities

Disability and the City

Those of us living in New Jersey are lucky enough to have easy travel access to two of America’s greatest cities: New York City and Philadelphia. However, having a disability can make these trips tricky to manage. Hi, my name is William Volkmann and I have Cerebral Palsy. When I was younger I could walk down city streets and hop into cabs, although it was demanding. Now that I’m older, I see now how much harder

Read more

5 Essential Tips on How to Shut Down Offensive Labels

R-word, Labels

A War of Words: “Politically Correct” vs “Plain Speaking”

Political Correction for the Politically Incorrect Labels

When it comes to the community of persons with disabilities and special needs, labels are a hot topic. We use certain words to describe individuals or ourselves. Unfortunately, words have the power to hurt feelings and limit expectations. We’d rather those words NOT be used to label us. On the other hand,

Read more

6 Tips to Beat Back the Winter Blues

Winter Blues

By Martha Wolfe

Why So S.A.D.?

Winter Blues, also known as “Cabin Fever,” can keep you down this cold and dreary season.

According to the Cleveland Clinic, “S.A.D. (seasonal affective disorder) affects half a million people in the US.Woman alone Three-quarters of sufferers are women.” Still, I’m sure anyone can relate with the affect less daylight, colder temperatures, and inclement weather can have on our moods. With that being said, what about those that already have a mental health diagnosis?

Read more

Halloween Without the Scary Price Tag

Halloween Scary Wallet

by Shruthi Srinivas

Costume Woes to Wins

Halloween is almost here and everyone wants to be part of the spooky fun. But the toughest part is finding the perfect costume for a reasonable price. As a person with a disability, this can be doubly difficult as some of the cheaper costumes on the market may not be the best for your body type or may end up causing sensory distress. So how do you get around the costs this Halloween? Make your own costume!

Read more

Accessible Vacation Destinations? You Know it!

Van in paradise

Everyone Deserves a Vacation

by Elise Giacobbe

Summer is here and the thought crossing everyone’s mind is, “I need a vacation.” We’re all ready to get away and enjoy some well-deserved relaxation. However, before you pack your bags, you may need to make some preparations if you are taking a trip with someone who may have special needs. Many important questions need to be answered: will medical needs be available? Is the area accessible? Will we have fun?

Read more

How to Make New Jersey Beaches Accessible

Beach Wheelchair

Sand, Sun, and Saltwater Taffy

Ned Stark Meme: Summer is ComingFrom North to South, most New Jerseyans agree that the place to be this summer is the Jersey shore. For some, it can even be a second home.  There isn’t a weekend that you won’t see them enjoying the Atlantic or strolling the boardwalk with family and friends. The question we ask ourselves here at Easterseals New Jersey, however, is how accessible is the beach?

Read more

Keeping Your Fitness Resolutions!

6 Winter Fitness Tips for People of All Abilities

By Guest Blogger James Richardson, Health and Wellness Coordinator

2016

Though it was off to a slow start, winter is officially here. And let’s face it; it’s easy to shift into hibernation mode. However, that won’t help keep us in optimal health. Though we tend to slow down in the winter months there is an easy way to keep things moving: Weather permitting – take a vigorous walk! Walk indoors or outdoors when conditions allow. Twenty to thirty minutes a day of walking has been shown to

Read more

Managing Holiday Temptations for People with Special Needs or Disabilities

By Guest Blogger Laura O’Reilly, R.N., B.A., AVP Health and Wellness, Easter Seals New Jersey
2

Celebrating the Holiday Season is a reason to eat, drink and be merry. Who can resist? Is it possible to get through the holiday season without gaining weight? I cannot promise that, but it is possible to minimize weight gain and use each day as a chance to get back on track by trying some of these tips.  It is important to know that all of us, whether or not we live with a disability or other special need, can enjoy a healthy and productive holiday season!

Read more

6 Helpful Tips For Caregivers During National Family Caregivers Month

DSP COLLAGE
Thank you to all family caregivers!

Easter Seals New Jersey recognizes the various struggles that many caregivers sometimes face when they are caring for a loved one.  Often times, these same individuals neglect to care for themselves.  For all of you that do not know, November is National Family Caregivers Month, and to honor all of you caregivers out there who work hard all day, every day, to care for your loved ones, this post is for you.

In the most recent studies on Caregivers in the US there was an estimated:

  • More than 65 million caregivers nationwide
  • 52 million caregivers caring for adults with an illness or disability
  • Caregivers spend on average 20-35 hours per week providing care
  • 17% feel their personal health suffers due to caregiving
  • 40%-70% of caregivers show significant signs of depression
  • Only 12% of caregivers report using respite services
  • 78% report needing more help and information about caregiving
  • 35% of caregivers report having difficulty finding time for themselves,
  • 29% report trouble balancing work and family responsibilities

Source: www.seniorcarecorner.com

As most of you know, being a caregiver can be extremely stressful, not giving yourself enough time in the day to worry about your own needs because you are always concerned about someone else’s.  When you do focus on your needs, it may feel selfish and unnatural.  It is important to understand that an essential part of being a caregiver is to make sure you put yourself first at times.  While you may think it will compromise the care of your loved one, you have to understand that it will not.  Both your life, and the life of your loved one, depends on your well-being.

With that being said, here are 6 helpful tips on how to manage caregiver stress and the busy lifestyle that comes with it.

Read more