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why we support
siskin children's institute

Read stories below from board members, donors, volunteers, and community friends sharing why they support Siskin Children's Institute. Want to share your "Why I support Siskin Children's Institute" story, contact us! We'd love to hear from you.


Our family has been touched by Siskin in so many ways that it just feels like home to us.

Rachael Welch
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We came to Siskin Children’s Institute Early Learning Center at a time where we were just looking for good quality daycare for our oldest son Eli, but it didn’t take long to discover how much more Siskin was than a school. Within the first year of Eli’s time there, his teachers and the school nurse discovered he was having absence seizures – something they were acutely familiar with that could have otherwise been easily missed. Because of their quick action, we were able to get him the early care he needed. Four years later, when our twins Zeke and Emmie were born twelve and a half weeks early, there was no question where we wanted them to be.

Through Siskin’s Home and Community-Based Early Intervention (HCBEI), our twins received the therapeutic care they needed in our home at a time when their prematurity severely limited travel. Once well enough, Zeke and Emmie began school at the Early Learning Center, having all of their therapy and other needs met while at school until the day that they proudly graduated from pre-K, fully ready to take on kindergarten in public school. Even after graduation, Zeke gained confidence and strength through the Developmental Pediatrics Clinic that has helped him overcome obstacles allowing him to succeed at school. Our family has been touched by Siskin in so many ways that it just feels like home to us. We will forever be grateful for the work of the amazing staff that make up the Siskin family, and are honored to be a part of the Siskin story. 


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I was drawn to the Siskin Children’s Institute board because the Siskin descendants have continued to build on the enduring legacy, serving not just children, but also their families .  

Edna Varner,  Board Member

I grew up with stories of Mose and Garrison Siskin—stories my parents told us because they knew the Siskin brothers and their relentless dedication  to improving the quality of life for our community, particularly for children and adults with special needs.  My sister internalized those stories, earned her degree in special education, and landed a teaching job in Siskin’s preschool where she taught for many years before moving on to work with older students with special needs.  I was drawn to the Siskin Children’s Institute board because the Siskin descendants have continued to build on the enduring legacy, serving not just children, but also their families, responding to the requests of professional educators across the country who want to make their practices more equitable and inclusive, and teaching a new generation of typically developing preschoolers that best friends come with and without disabilities.


What a remarkable situation where highly skilled and motivated specialists are engaged with the care and teaching of these very special children.

Bob Berz
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There are many worthy causes that draw our attention, but very few have attracted the support of Siskin Children’s Institute with such profound effect on the lives of special needs children and their families.  I can picture in my mind the first time I observed a classroom activity as a visitor and how easy it was to see what was taking place with these beautiful children as they were taught and nurtured.  That image has stuck with me since that first time and refreshed at every subsequent Siskin visit.  What a remarkable situation where highly skilled and motivated specialists are engaged with the care and teaching of these very special children.  As parents and grandparents, we can be especially  appreciative of how important the essential work of Siskin Children’s Institute is to so many.