World of Children Award has joined with disability advocates Sarah Cronk and Michaela Mycroft to support inclusive early childhood development programs and school-based enrichment opportunities for children with disabilities. Cronk and Mycroft received the World of Children Youth Award last year, recognizing their work in countries worldwide to ensure that disability did not bar children from their full potential.

According to a news release from the World of Children Award, donations from supporters of the World of Children Award’s Back to School Campaign will assist Cronk’s program, The Sparkle Effect, in launching new school-based cheerleading and dance teams across the US for children with and without disabilities. Cronk states that parents of students with disabilities report that participation in a Sparkle Effect team has resulted in improved school attendance and grades. Participants have also been more likely to joint additional school-based extracurricular clubs, Cronk says, “…Why? Because inclusion is not so much an activity as it is a way of thinking.”

The release notes that donations will also support Mycroft’s early childhood education program, The Chaeli Campaign, in South Africa, which is designed to prepare children with disabilities for their first years in school.

Mycroft notes that the children “will be encouraged to celebrate difference and see ability in a different way, acknowledging that no matter how different we look or act, that we all have something significant to offer one another.”

The release reports that some examples of what donations will provide to the two programs include a “back to school kit” for children enrolled in Mycroft’s program and new cheerleading uniforms for a Sparkle Effect cheerleader. Additionally, all campaign donations will support The Sparkle Effect and The Chaeli Campaign.

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Source: World of Children Award