The Ohio Department of Education started the Parent Mentor program to help families and schools connect to improve services for students. The parent mentor program is a free service for families to help them understand special education issues. Parent mentors help families advocate for their child, connect families and community resources, and provide training for both families and educators. Most importantly, as a parent of a child with special needs, they can be a sounding board for parents to talk through situations and to let them know they are not alone.
Lending libraries allow families and educators to trial tools that may be beneficial to youth before committing to purchase them. Tools may include: medical equipment, adaptive toys, assistive technology, sensory tools, educational resources and more. There are several resources available.
SALT is a free monthly series of programs developed with parents, families, support staff and teachers in mind. The topics are chosen by the parents each year. SALT programs provide learning opportunities, resources and guidance to help navigate the transition from school to adulthood and beyond. Meetings are informal and everyone is invited to attend any meeting they feel would be benefit the youth they support.
This is a group of transition-age youth who meet with an instructor and peers at the same time as the parent SALT session. The teen session is geared towards fostering awareness of self-advocacy, independent living and employment…but don’t question that it also fosters friendships and fun!
COPE is a cognitive behavioral program offered through Mercer Health. The goal is to help children, teens and young adults develop skills to stop negative thoughts and to think and act in more positive ways. COPE is for those with mild to moderate depression, anxiety, or unspecified mood disorders. For more information or to schedule an appointment, see the information below. Referrals are not required.
Youth to Youth (Y2Y) is just that…youth empowering youth. Mercer County youth join together to rise above the effects of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs, peer pressure, bullying, and suicide. There are many opportunities for leadership, community outreach, creating new friendships, and fun!
Eligibility: 7th to 12th graders from Mercer County
Gatherings/Location: 2nd and 4th Mondays of each month from 6pm – 8pm.
529 N. Walnut Street, Celina, OH 45822 (Old church on corner of Blake and Walnut St. Enter on Blake Street – ground level
The Clubhouse offers a relaxed sober environment for individuals of all ages. Support is offered for those with substance abuse as well as mental health. The Clubhouse has multiple groups that meet at various times, and it also sponsors special events. Some groups are open to the public, while others are closed groups that require the individual be a client of Foundations. For more information on this or other groups, please see the contact information below:
Gatherings/Location: Teens in Recovery (open to any teen) Every Tuesday 4:30pm -6:00pm.
221 S. Buckeye St
Celina, OH 458
Briana’s Hope is a faith-based support group for individuals battling addictions and their families. Their goal is to be the “other choice” and offer a safe, judgement free space where individuals can be as honest and transparent as they choose to be. Call if have questions or if need a ride.
Gatherings/Location: Tuesdays, 6:00pm – 6:30pm (meal) 6:30pm – 7:30pm (group)
Grand Lake United Methodist Church
119 E. Fulton Street
Celina, OH 45822
The Mercer County Sheriff’s Office provides an emergency information form available for individuals with autism and other intellectual/developmental disabilities. If you have a loved one with intellectual/developmental disabilities, you may download the form below. You may provide as little or as much information as you wish. This information will be put into the computers and be accessible by staff at the sheriff’s office for use by law enforcement and other first responders in an emergency event.
Below is also a card created by the Ohio Department of Public Safety’s Traffic Safety Office (OTSO), Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities (OOD), and statewide law enforcement partners to help individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing exchange information with law enforcement.
COMMUNICATION CARD (Deaf or Hard of Hearing)
Mercer County Special Olympics offers a variety of athletic opportunities for individuals with disabilities. The following sports are currently offered as Special Olympics Ohio sanctioned sports: basketball (competitive and skills teams), powerlifting, cheer, bowling, and unified golf. For more information on Special Olympics in Mercer County, visit their Facebook page.
The peer support recreation club is offered through Mercer DD and provides a variety of opportunities for socialization with friends. It may be an art class, nature walk, game night, trying a new restaurant, music, or an exercise class. Regardless of the activity, this club is about coming together to support each other and discovering new and enjoyable experiences.
“Where Development Has No Disability”.
The Mercer County Aktion Club is a service club for adults with disabilities sponsored by Celina and Coldwater Kiwanis. Members have opportunities for leadership, as well as serving in their local communities. Along with several service projects and a yearly scholarship fundraiser, the Aktion Club members enjoy planning social activities just for fun!
Gatherings/Location: Meetings the 2nd Tuesday of each month at 6:30 pm.
110 North Market Street, Coldwater OH 45828
The Arc is an organization dedicated to serving individuals with developmental disabilities and their families in our communities in a variety of ways. The Arc sponsors many social events throughout the year, supports Mercer County Special Olympics, and financially assists with camps and conferences for Arc members and their children.
For more information about the Arc or its activities, see the contact information below.
The National Little League Association established Challenger Baseball in 1989. It wanted boys and girls with physical and mental challenges to enjoy the game of baseball too. All coaches, announcers, and officers are volunteers.
In the Challenger League, everybody plays, and everybody wins! Some of the players may need a little extra help with batting, fielding, or running around the bases. A family member or friend can assist that player as their “Buddy”, helping just enough so the player can feel like a real “all-star”. Don’t miss this opportunity to be part of the team! All retired, past, and new players are welcome.
Mercer County Little League
For kids ages 4-18 with physical and/or mental disabilities. Games are usually held on Sunday evenings in June through mid-July. Games are held throughout various towns in Mercer County.
Mercer County Senior League
For adults 19 and older with a physical and/or mental disability. Players must be from Mercer County or be a retired player from the Little League. The senior league plays baseball, socializes, and just has fun! Senior League games generally follow the Little League games on Sunday evenings in June through mid-July.