May 9, 2021

Franklin County Recreation Disabilities Dance

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The PR-365 class that took charge of planning the event

The Franklin County Recreation Spring Formal for Adults with Developmental Disabilities (ADD) was held at the university Saturday, Apr. 9.

This event is part of Lois Foreman-West’ s PR-365,  Event Planning class. Planning this event was the major assignment for the course, and the class worked with Franklin County Recreation.
Zach Hazlett, the Community Recreation Coordinator for Franklin County Recreation, partnered with the PR-365 class to make this event happen.

“The purpose of the program was to give individuals things to do now that they were out of the institutions. The Franklin County Board of Developmental Disabilities [FCBDD] ran the program solo until 2010,” said Hazlett. “During the summer of 2010, FCBDD partnered with the Association for the Developmentally Disabled [ADD] to help run the recreation program. In 2014, FCBDD outsourced the recreation program completely to ADD.”

The assignment for the PR-365 course requires that each committee: 1) do research about the organization, its needs, and the context of the event; 2) develop a plan that includes goals and objectives as well as all the details necessary to successfully carry out the event; 3) actually implement their plans by hosting the event; and 4) evaluate how successfully they were able to meet their objectives and determine what went well and what might have been done better.

The ADD’s recreation program today consists of 4 employees. They provide evening and weekend recreational opportunities to hundreds of Franklin County residents. Their goal is to provide as many community integrated opportunities for member participation.

“We want our members to feel apart of the community and not feel like they are different,” Hazlett said.

This was not the first event that Foreman-West has done with the Franklin County Recreation. Last year’s event assignment was held in Dublin, and the year before, the class developed plans for a 5K run/walk to encourage healthy lifestyles in partnership with the Shalom Zone, which is a community organization in the hilltop area of west Columbus.
“The main beneficiary of the Franklin County Recreation spring formal is our members,” said Hazlett. “It gives them an opportunity to find a classy outfit and enjoy a night with their friends.”
It is not just the attendees who benefit from the event, though.
“In addition to our members benefiting from the activity, the students that planned the event will benefit as well,” Hazlett said. “They are getting a better understanding of what all goes on. You can only learn so much from a book or a lecture.”
Events like these aren’t new to the Franklin County Recreation.

“We have a regular Friday night dance twice a month. Every so often, we have a special event,” said Hazlett. “Currently we have the Spring Formal, and we also do a Luau during the summer… This is the second consecutive year we have worked with Capital University to plan the Spring Formal.”

Hazlett was pleased with the way the event turned out.

“This class did a wonderful job planning the event. Seeing the excitement and joy coming from our members was the best part of the evening. I cannot thank this class enough,” said Hazlett.

For more information about volunteering and upcoming events, follow the Franklin County Recreation on Facebook.

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