Our daughter, Devorah Gila Lieberman was born in September, 1984 and we received her diagnosis of Down Syndrome almost immediately. Needless to say, we were lost and devastated and did not know where to turn. We were referred to ACDS, which was amazingly less than a mile from our home in Bellmore.
The next week, we went to meet the wonderful people at ACDS and then Devorah and I started going to the class with other new moms and babies in November. At first it was difficult, but the teachers, therapists and other staff were a life saver to us and to our two other daughters, who attended the weekly sibling rap groups. Devorah really thrived with the extra love, attention and help she received at ACDS.
A year later, she started going on a bus to the toddler program. She graduated in 1989, a happy, smiling, confident, social and smart little girl, ready to conquer the world. At that time we wrote a letter of gratitude to the school saying that our family will never forget what they did for us, and we never have. ACDS started our daughter on the road to a successful life of amazing accomplishments.
Devorah is now 27. After finishing high school in Levittown, she attended a special learning, working and touring program in Israel for two years. She spent many summers working in a camp in the Catskills. She is now in a wonderful group home with some of her friends in Brooklyn, attends a Day Hab there and works in an office in Manhattan. We are very proud of her.
Devorah remembers ACDS fondly, especially from all our visits there throughout the years and from her participation in the 5 Plus programs. Many of the staff members attended her Bat Mitzvah in 1996 and heard her thank all those who helped her throughout the years in her speech.
Our family will always be grateful for the wonderful start in life that ACDS gave our very special daughter.
Andrea D. Lieberman