Sandra Jacobs is seventeen years old. Like a typical teenager she is outgoing, stubborn and loves to have her picture taken. Unlike the typical teenager, Sandra has cerebral palsy.
Sandra started receiving services from Rainbows at 12 months old when she was adopted by her parents Doug and Melanie. She has four siblings; Chad, Jason, Tamara, and Melissa. Jason is the only sibling still at home and helps with Sandra’s care. Through Rainbows she is involved in Camp Woodchuck – an all day summer program, after school Latchkey, and Targeted Case Management. Katie Mans, Sandra’s Case Manager, has been with the family since January of 2014. “Sandra is always happy and excited,” Katie said. “She just brings a smile to your face!”
Over the years Sandra has undergone multiple surgeries, including back surgery, to help her sit straighter, and hand surgery to give her more hand function. Sandra’s struggles include feeding, dressing, and other basic needs as well as communication. Sandra uses a DynaVox, which is a tablet that helps her communicate by choosing pictures on the screen that talk and express her needs.
“She may not be able to vocalize it, but she knows what she wants,” Melanie said.
Sandra loves Rainbows and all the activities she has been involved in. This year Sandra participated as a soloist in the Camp Woodchuck Talent Show. Sandra also sang in the Miss Unstoppable pageant held by The Arc of Sedgwick County. Sandra not only won the title of Miss Unstoppable but also Miss Congeniality.
Melanie says Rainbows has always been reliable for her family. “I don’t know what I would do without Rainbows. I’ve called and asked ‘Where do I go from here?’ Rainbows has just always been there for anything I need.”
“She is one of a kind,” said Melanie.