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REAL ESTATE | Special ribbon cutting for All-Abilities’ Park fulfills a 7-year promise | By Jason Howarth

June 14, 2022 – Grafton, WI – It was a scene of emotional triumph for Diane Helmer, Donna Howarth and the All My Friends Inc. organization, after five years and over $450,000 raised in donations, a ribbon was cut for the remodeled Centennial Park in Grafton.
This project was result of a promise Diane Helmer made to her mother while battling cancer; seven years to the day after her passing, Helmer fulfilled that wish.

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Helmer has an adult daughter named Cassie who struggles with autism. Howarth has an adult son named Jason with autism, so for them this was park was a deeply personal project, undertaken and now completed by two friends.
Countless fundraisers including annual poker runs, meat raffles, and casino nights all contributed greatly to the park’s eventual completion.
All My Friends will still run these events going forward, but they will now serve a new purpose.
In addition to continuing to help send autistic kids to summer camp, the organization will now be turning its focus to building sensory rooms, a therapeutic space that aids people with special needs in a calmer, more socially controlled environment to foster focus and cognitive development.
The first of these rooms will be installed at Balance Inc., a social services organization for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
The playground was once a standard park playground, but All My Friends redesigned and remade the playground to cater to children and people of all abilities and disabilities, with specifically tailored attractions and replacing the less than kind wood chips with rubber padding.
Fence posts, many of which are personally inscribed with names of the donors, adorn the park. People can still purchase and get their name or organization immortalized on a post as part of the fence.
For information on future fundraising events and news about the future projects of All My Friends Inc. visit allmyfriendsinc.org

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