By Margaret Stokes & Chris Howell NewsOn6.com
TULSA, OK -- After fourteen years and three different locations, Happy Hands Educational Center is moving into its fourth and final location.
"We're an early childhood development center for children with hearing loss and communication disorders. We educate the children in this Christian environment much like a regular preschool but we make language visual. We work on speech and language development. Our goal is to make sure the children are literate and ready for 1st grade," said Jan Pride, Happy Hands Program Director.
The statistics show that every year in Tulsa there are about 14 hundred children that need services for some type of hearing loss.
"We can only serve thirty every day. We do have a waiting list, every day we get calls from parents that ask how I get help for my child, that's the heartbreaking part for me because I'm the one that handles those phone calls. The facility will be able to house 70 children every day, but that still doesn't come close to the need out there but it greatly expands what we're able to do."
The new facility is now possible thanks to a grant that took 6 years of dedicated work to get approved.
"It's been definitely a walk of faith. We became familiar with the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation several years ago and started the process of getting ourselves ready for submitting a grant. They awarded the grant for us. 6.6 million dollars. We do have to raise percentages of that for endowments, and maintenance, operations and things like that so our capital campaign is ongoing. We have 1.8 million left to raise. It's an answer to prayer. It's exciting, but the best part is getting to serve more children and we'll get to do it in a facility designed especially for them."
The building, is expected to open its doors in 2010, and will include specially designed therapy rooms for the students.
If you would like to get help get involved with the Capital Campaign contact Happy Hands.