The mission of PeerPals.org is to create a community of inclusion for children with disabilities as they enter kindergarten.
The PeerPals.org model gives each child with a disability the opportunity to enter kindergarten with at least one friendship with a typically developing peer. Our goal is to duplicate and implement the PeerPals.org model nationwide.
The PeerPals.org Program:
Individual Play Dates
Children are matched geographically and by age for one on one play dates. Each pair consists of one child with special needs and one without. The parents of the pals schedule and hold an independent play date.
Group Play Dates
Group play dates are held in developmentally appropriate locations. These play dates are supervised by professionals in the field of special education who donate their time. Group play dates are open to everyone, whether they have been matched with someone for individual play dates or not. These play dates are guided play in a fun and safe environment.
What is a peer pal?
A peer pal is a child, age two, three, four or five, that wants to make a new friend in the community. Any child can be a peer pal.
Why should my child be a peer pal?
Participating in PeerPals.org will give your child with a disability a support system of typically developing peers upon entering school. Having a typically developing child as a friend, or even as a peer model, is one of the best things for your child.
PeerPals.org gives your child without a disability the opportunity to experience others with different abilities and to develop empathy. It is human nature to fear the unknown or things considered different. By having kids play together over a period of time before kindergarten, we have the chance to remove this social boundary. PeerPals.org aims to help children see past a person’s limitations and to appreciate that person for who they are instead of only seeing what they are not.