Racker supports people with disabilities in homes throughout Tompkins, Cortland, and Tioga counties.
The people that live in these homes have a wide range of abilities, needs, and interests. For Giving Tuesday this year, we are raising funds to provide a “sensory bag” for each of these 26 homes.
Research has consistently shown the benefits of sensory play for people of any age. With the wide range of sensory items available, there is truly something for everyone. Sensory items promote focus, strengthens the brain pathways and connections that allow for efficient sensory integration, and promote self-regulation. Through the use of fidgets, visually stimulating toys, weighted blankets, or noise cancelling headphones, people can develop their sensory processing skills, fine and gross motor skills, body awareness, and self-regulation and coping skills.
With the money raised from Giving Tuesday, we will create a base model sensory bag that includes the following items:
- Clear backpack, so people can easily see the items in the bag Weighted lap pad, which provides gentle pressure to reduce anxiety and calm the body
- Pop-its and squeeze balls, popular fidget toys that can provide both increased focus and concentration as well as provide a calming mechanism for someone who may be overstimulated or anxious.
- Noise-reducing headphones, to provide relief to those with auditory sensitivities.
- Visual sensory items, such as liquid bubble timers to help a person focus on the nearby visual input, and filter out the busy and possibly over-stimulating visual environment.
Once a house receives their sensory bag, they can add additional items based on the interests of those living at the house.
If you can help, please know that every gift – no matter the size – will truly make a difference.