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Razorfest 2015

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Every year Champions for Kids hosts Razorfest at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium. Over 65,000 people from all over Arkansas come to Fayetteville for this free family event that ends with the Razorbacks' Red & White game. This year's event was held on Saturday, April 25th. Vendors and non-profits from all over northwest Arkansas set up booths with games and giveaways for kids. This year Champions for Kids also held a grant contest to give away $50,000. The contest started with 20 non-profits and over the month of March voting was held on Facebook to narrow it down to the top 10. Beginning April 1st the second round of voting began and continued through April 24th. The top 8 non-profits all received a grant. UCP finished in 7th place and was awarded a $5,000 grant for the Family Support Program. Thank you to all who voted, liked, and shared daily on Facebook to help us win a grant. Daphne England, Community Development Specialist for UCP of NW Arkansas and her daughter, Morgan, accepted the check from Champions for Kids.

Painting with a Purpose

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The Painting with a Purpose event at Painting with a Twist in Bentonville held on Sunday, April 19th was a success! The classroom was full as 37 people came out to paint in support of UCP. Thanks to all of those who participated, we raised $647.50 for UCP’s Family Support program in NW Arkansas.

2015 Race for Independence

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On March 14th UCP held the Race for Independence at the Pinnacle Hills Promenade in Rogers. The race included a 5k run and a ½ fun walk and roll. Overall male and female winners in the 5K adult categories received medals as well as gift cards to Rush Running, Starbucks, and a Darden restaurant of their choice. Overall male and female winners in the children’s 5K categories received a movie night gift bag complete with candy, popcorn, and 10 free Redbox rentals as well as a gift card for 2 hours of jump time at High Rise Extreme Air Sports and Trampoline Park in Rogers. The highlight of the Race for Independence was the 1/2K fun walk and roll. There were several participants with different disabilities who took part in the 1/2K and demonstrated how they are living life without limits. Proceeds from the Race for Independence benefit UCP’s Family Support Program. Thanks to all of the participants, volunteers, and sponsors who made the 2015 Race for Independence possible!

Little Rock Adult Center Jewerly

Check out the beautiful jewelry being made at the Little Rock Adult Center! UCP adult centers education our clients on how to become their most independent selves. Clients that attend our centers learn the skills they need to enable them to have an active role in their community.

All jewelry available for purchase.

Price list is:

Earrings - $2

Bracelets - $3

Bracelet/Earring Set - $4

Necklace - $6

Bracelet/Earring/Necklace - $10


For more information, contact CP Buttons at 501-228-3823!

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Family Support: Mason Renigar

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Mason Renigar is a 12 year old boy who lives with his grandmother, Freda Marshall. Freda is Mason’s sole guardian because both of his parents were killed in a car accident. At birth he had water on his brain (hydrocephalus) and had to have a shunt placed for draining the fluid off. In January 2012, when Mason had just turned 9 years old, his shunt malfunctioned and caused extensive injury to his brain. Mason is now unable to speak or perform activities of daily living and is completely dependent on his grandmother for his care. As Mason has grown, his grandmother is unable to lift him by herself to get him into the bathtub. Their bathroom was not big enough to roll his wheelchair or hoyer lift in to make it easier to transfer him to the tub. Ms. Marshall applied for a grant from Home Depot for a bathroom remodel but it wasn’t enough to cover all of the renovations needed. She then contacted UCP and applied for assistance from the Family Support Fund. Together, UCP and Home Depot were able to complete the bathroom renovations needed to make it easier to bathe Mason. All new flooring, smaller pedestal sink, and roll in shower were installed. Also a 4 foot doorway leading directly from Mason’s room into the bathroom was also installed to allow easier access. Ms. Marshall is thrilled with the outcome and it has made things much better for her and Mason.

UCP Partners with Arkansas Independent Living Council and Disability Rights Center of Arkansas for Voter Education Events

United Way Campaign Video Featuring Butterfly Learning Center

UCP's Butterfly Learning Center is featured in the 2014 United Way campaign video!  Check out the video below to hear about Tayler's journey at Butterfly Learning Center in Little Rock.

Larry Stang's High Profile Feature

Join UCP at the United Way Kick-Off

United Cerebral Palsy of Arkansas is a United Way agency! This means that you can designate a portion of your paycheck to UCP of Arkansas through payroll deduction during the United Way campaign.  Even a little bit a week adds up to make real change in your community. 

 Here's How You Can Help:

 1. Come to the United Way Kick-Off today (September 10th) at Dickey-Stephens Park in North Little Rock (11:30AM-1PM).  Come enjoy a free lunch, music, and door prizes. Join us at the UCP booth to learn about   exciting ways you can help those with disabilities live life without limits!

 2. Invite a UCP representative to speak at your company's United Way Campaign. We have a number of heartwarming stories that speak to the   abilities rather than the disabilities that we would love to share with the  community.  Call Kristin at 501.228.3838 or email kristin@ucpcark.org. 
3. Designate your United Way Gift to UCP! When you designate your United Way contributions to UCP, you are helping those with disabilities live life without limits!

$3 a week would buy an adaptive swing for disabled children at Butterfly Learning Center

$5 a week would provide a child (birth - 3 years old) with 1 month of Early Intervention services (including therapy)

$10 a week would provide 2 therapeutic picnic tables for an Adult Center


If your company doesn’t have a United Way campaign, you can   call 501.376.4567 to set one up or you can go to      www.ucpark.org and donate online to UCP!


Channel 7 Promotes Once Upon A Time event

KATV Channel 7 had Kristin Stuart on their Midday Arkansas program to talk about the upcoming Once Upon A Time event that will be on Thursday, September 18th at the Arkansas Governor's Mansion. Watch the clip below to learn more!


UCP Honors Workers

United Cerebral Palsy of Arkansas held a picnic in honor of National Direct Support Professionals (DSP) Recognition Week on Saturday, September 6, 2014.  This event honored the work of Direct Support Professionals and other employees of UCP and their commitment to providing services to people with a spectrum of disabilities across the state of Arkansas. The U.S. Senate unanimously approved a resolution designating the week of September 7 as National Direct Support Professional Recognition Week.   Governor Beebe issued a proclamation naming the week of September 7 as Direct Support Professional Recognition Week in Arkansas. Join us in celebrating these individuals who promote life without limits for those with disabilities at the UCP employee picnic.

Watch the clip below of Channel 11 covering last weekend's picnic!


UCP North Little Rock Adult Center Science Fair

The North Little Rock Adult Center held a science fair on Wednesday, August 27th.  The classrooms each had a project that was entered into the contest.  Classroom B won the contest with their air flow project. 

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Jen Bricker - Life Without Limits!

Jennifer Bricker was born without legs and left in the hospital by her birth parents.  She was adopted into a house with three older brothers and raised without being told the word "can't:.  Her dream was to be a tumbler, inspired by Olympic gymnast Dominique Moceanu.  Watch the video to hear about her journey!

Community First Choice

Arkansas Department of Human Services is striving to expand home and community based services for citizens with physical and developmental disabilities and the elderly through the Community First Choice (CFC) Option.  There is much discussion and debate about this subject as we move toward the next State Legislative Session that will convene in January 2015. Here is some information that will help you better understand what CFC is all about.


To explain this, we need a very quick overview of how Medicaid works. In order to receive federal matching funds, states must abide by the federal Medicaid law. This basically defines what states: 1) must do; 2) can choose to do (referred to as an “option”); and 3) cannot do. As long as states comply with the federal law, they are free to set their own guidelines regarding eligibility and services.

However, states can request to do other than that specified in the law by applying for a waiver. There are currently nearly 300 waivers in effect across the country. Arkansas has four of them.

States that wish to provide most services to people with disabilities in the community instead of institutional settings must apply for a Section 1915(c) Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Waiver. Arkansas has had an HCBS Waiver since 1989. However, this type of waiver allows states to limit eligibility and services.


There are a number of reasons why the CFC option would be better for people with disabilities. The most important ones are outlined in the chart below comparing what states are allowed to do under each.

          States allowed to:                                         CFC Option                   Section 1915(c) Waiver

Cap services                                                                   NO                                             YES

Have Waiting Lists                                                        NO                                              YES

Limit Services to certain parts of state                     NO                                              YES                                                                                                                                or specific disabilities                 

Arkansas currently has a waiting list of 2,900 children and adults with developmental disabilities. These individuals will directly benefit from Arkansas initiating the Community First Choice (CFC) Option by allowing them to receive the support they have been waiting for – some over eight years.


The federal government would provide more funding to states that use it. The CFC option provides a 6% increase in the federal medical assistance percentage (FMAP) for home and community based services. This means that Arkansas will receive a 76% match, or 76 cents on every Medicaid dollar utilized in CFC in Arkansas. The first two States that received CFC approval were California and Oregon. California anticipates an additional $573 million in Medicaid funds due to CFC implementation, while Oregon is projecting a $100 million increase.

States can also include community based alternatives to nursing home care in their CFC plan for senior citizens so they can continue to live in the community as long as possible. These services will also be eligible for the additional 6% federal assistance.

Please let your legislators know that taking care of the most vulnerable Arkansans is important to you, and you support the Community First Choice (CFC) Option as a way to do so. 

excerpts from thearc.org

Butterfly Learning Center Featured on KARK

LITTLE ROCK, AR - It may look like play, but little Taylor is in the middle of a physical therapy session.

"Helping them move in their environment."

Will Smith is a therapist for United Cerebral Palsy.

"And that's the best part."

Which operates the Butterfly Learning Center in Little Rock

"We're United Cerebral Palsy but we treat kids with developmental delays, autism, cerebral palsy a variety of different diagnosis," says Smith.

"I'm going to go in the circus and juggle like the elephants!"

Inside the preschool, children prepare to move on to kindergarten.

"That's what our focus is to get them ready to be a typical kid when they go to school," says Smith.

Depending on their disability, children can get therapy in many different areas.

"We do a wide variety of things."

Smith focuses on large motor skills. From walking and jumping, to climbing stairs and catching.

Once the child masters the main action, Smith also breaks down the movement into smaller parts like balance and control.

"They're ready and they know they can do it."

Making a difference one step, jump or bounce at a time.

Click here for the video link!

Cerebral Palsy Awareness Bracelets

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Cerebral Palsy Awareness Bracelets

Want to wear Green for St. Patrick's Day? Why not wear Green for another reason!  March is Cerebral Palsy Awareness Month and Watts Knots will be selling Cerebral Palsy Awareness Bracelets. All proceeds will go to United Cerebral Palsy.  Cost is $5 plus shipping. You can place your order through the Watts Knots Facebook page (www.facebook.com/wattsknots) or contact Kristin Stuart at

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Letters from Santa

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Giving Tuesday

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About Tayler:

 Tayler was born at 26 weeks with a grade four brain bleed. The doctors told her parents that she would probably never walk or talk due to her prematurity.  Tayler started at UCP’s Butterfly Learning Center (BLC) when she was five months old.  Today Tayler is four years old and knows her colors, numbers, and shapes.  Despite having some developmental   issues, she acts like many other four year olds and lights up a room with her energetic personality.  Lynette Simpson, Tayler’s mom credits her daughter’s success to the Butterfly Learning Center.  She said, “BLC has taught Tayler how to talk, walk, eat, play, run, and jump and I am very grateful that she has learned so much. BLC has truly changed our lives and gave us hope for Tayler!”


About Giving Tuesday:

Giving Tuesday is a call to action to help promote a national day of giving in the midst of the annual shopping and spending season. Join other donors and make a gift to United Cerebral Palsy of Arkansas. Giving Tuesday brings together donors large and small, first-time and long-time, large corporations and individual people. Consider donating to UCP of Arkansas where our goal is life without limits for people with disabilities!

United Cerebral Palsy of Arkansas is working every day to advance the   independence, productivity, and full citizenship of people with cerebral palsy, autism, Down syndrome, intellectual disabilities, traumatic brain   injury and other special needs. Tayler is just one example of the significant life change happening in the more than 600 children and adults we serve each year.

· $3 a week would buy an adaptive swing for disabled children at Butterfly   Learning Center

· $5 a week would provide a child (birth - 3 years old) with 1 month of Early Intervention services (including therapy)

· $10 a week would provide 2 therapeutic picnic tables for an Adult Center

 You can donate online through our PayPal account.  Any amount will help UCP fund the programs that serve over 600 people throughout the state of Arkansas.

Team Kelsie Raises Over $2,000

LITTLE ROCK, AR - United Cerebral Palsy of Arkansas (UCP) is proud to announce that Team Kelsie has raised over $2,000 for UCP of Arkansas through running various 5K’s around the country.  Kelsie Butler’s mother Leasea began running 5K’s while pushing Kelsie to raise awareness and funds for cerebral palsy and UCP of Arkansas.  They started in January with a run with friends to kick off the program and have run at least one 5K a month.  Friends and family have joined Chris and Leasea Butler to advocate for cerebral palsy and Kelsie.  With their help, Team Kelsie has been represented in eight states.


About Kelsie:

She was born seven weeks premature and initially had a good start. She stayed in the NICU for three weeks before coming home. Her second night at home she had a grade 4 IVH (stroke) they believe to be due to an immature blood vessel or a AVM which has left her with cerebral palsy, hydrocephalus, epilepsy, and developmental delays. Her parents were told she would not make it those first few days back in the hospital and now she is five!  She also has a hemangioma that she has to have surgeries on frequently, a VP shunt that fails from time to time and vision issues that may require surgery. With all of this she has more courage and tenacity than most adults.


About UCP of Arkansas:

UCP of Arkansas is a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote life without limits for those with disabilities.  UCP was incorporated in 1957 by parents of children with cerebral palsy and other physical disabilities who could not find assistance. United Cerebral Palsy is one the largest and comprehensive non-profit agencies in the state of Arkansas. The current array of services has grown in scope from day care and parent relief for five children to a comprehensive network of habilitation/rehabilitation serving over 650 disabled individuals a year. UCP aspires to increase the level of independence for all of their clients so that they may be productive members of society.


For more information about Team Kelsie, go to www.runK5.ucpnow.com  or join their Facebook group “5k for K5”. To learn more about United Cerebral Palsy of Arkansas, go to www.ucpark.org or www.facebook.com/UCPofAR.