When you enter the home of 14 year-old Jeremiah Smith you see that he is loved. His mother and younger sisters adore him and enjoy helping him be his best. His sisters love to play games with him and help him ride a skateboard in the parking lot of their apartment complex and the nearby school. “She is his person,” said Jeremiah’s mother Toni about his sister, Sara. “They are good friends and she is his advocate in everything. He trusts her.”
The love Sara and Jeremiah share is evident in their smiles, laughter and caring play. “It’s fun to see the siblings together,” said Karina, the family’s Targeted Case Manager. “They challenge each other to be better humans and they are. They are a special, caring family.” Some of his favorite things to do are make cookies and pizza with his family.
“We are grateful to Rainbows for helping our family care for Jeremiah,” said Toni. “Rainbows has benefited Jeremiah and my family so much. Not just because of the services but because of the way they provide wraparound care for him. It’s like having another family,” said Toni.
Jeremiah joined the Smith family through foster care and was adopted when he was a toddler. At the time, he attended Rainbows for child care and the staff noticed his developmental delays. He was eventually diagnosed with intellectual and developmental delays along with autism and fitted with AFO’s – ankle-foot orthotics, which help him walk and stay mobile.
Jeremiah has had services through Rainbows since he was very young. He enjoys attending Camp during the summers. Since this summer included a pandemic, his family was relieved when Rainbows sent Cheyenne, a Direct Care Professional, to their home with fun activities to interact and keep him active all summer. “I was nervous about summer care during the pandemic, it has been great to have the extra help with Jeremiah. I can do other things with my daughters and know he will be safe,” said Toni.
It took him a little while to get used to Cheyenne, but once all the kids adopted her into the family, it all went great and he enjoys having someone to interact with and provide activities.