Community Celebrates National Child Health Day

Nearly 300 community members gathered at Family Voices of North Dakota's "Luncheon for Littles" event

FARGO, N.D. — Twenty six years ago, Tammy DeSautel brought home her own bundle of joy.

Right away, she knew she’d be facing a different set of challenges than most mothers do.

Her daughter was born with Cerebral Palsy.

“26 years ago, we didn’t have the internet and we didn’t have the social media that we have now. And I lived in a small town, and so we felt pretty isolated,” she said.

She was slowly learning how to navigate the complex healthcare industry as the mother of a child with special needs.

But more often than not, she said she didn’t know who to turn to for answers.

“Are there any other parents we can talk to? Family members we can talk to? We just need to know what other people are going through, what they’ve gone through.”

That’s when she and Donene Feist, a mother of a child with a hearing impairment, created Family Voices of North Dakota.

“A lot of people aren’t familiar with Family Voices because they haven’t needed it. But once you need it, you’re so grateful that they are there,” said DeSautel, who now volunteers with the organization.

It’s an organization dedicated to helping parents of children with special needs navigate the healthcare system.

And on this National Day of Children’s Health, Family Voices is ensuring all children are remembered.

“It can be scary when you have a child with a disability. You don’t know where to turn to, and Family Voices can be a great resource because we all have children with special healthcare needs ourselves,” said Family Voices of North Dakota Consultant Tonya Oss-Brewer.

Families and parents filled up on their favorite soups and got to take home a piece of canvas art created by local community kids at their daycare centers.

“Children’s health is important, of course, for all children, but for our families that have a child with a significant disability or chronic health illness, we wanted to bring awareness that not to forget about the children that are the most vulnerable population as well,” said Family Voices of North Dakota Director Donene Feist.

You can connect with Family Voices of North Dakota through their website using this link: click here.

Categories: Community, Health, Local News, North Dakota News