Grantee Spotlight: GiGi’s Playhouse

It’s hard to find someone who doesn’t already know this organization, but for those that don’t, GiGi’s Playhouse Fort Wayne is a Down syndrome achievement center. The Fort Wayne Playhouse opened in January of 2016 with the support of community members and grants. With their free programming, individuals with Down syndrome are supported from birth through adulthood. Thursday, March 21st is World Down Syndrome Day, so we thought that March would be the best time to put the spotlight on this fantastic grantee.

In the three short years since their doors opened, GiGi’s Playhouse Fort Wayne has shown immense growth.  Their 2019 participation numbers are doubling from that of last year at the same time. They have also been able to add additional programming such as a preschool and under playgroup, GiGiFIT, Drums Alive and additional days for Cooking Club. With the opening of GiGi’s Genesis Health Bar they continue enhancing skill building and promoting awareness in our community.

“GiGi’s Genesis Health Bar continues to increase confidence, communication and overall employable skills in our GiGi U graduates,” says Holly Tonak, GiGi’s Playhouse Fort Wayne Executive Director. “Oftentimes, we hear that the day they work at Genesis is their favorite day of the week.” Holly refers to Playhouse participants as her friends and considers herself lucky to know them all.  That is true for anyone that gets to meet one of Holly’s friends as the confidence they build at the Playhouse radiates from them.

Be sure to check out Genesis Health Bar and the GiGi’s storefront. Not only will you support a worthy organization and learn about Holly’s friends, but are sure to find some great eats or a nice gift for yourself or someone else! Genesis is open Monday – Friday, 10am – 4pm and is located at 6081 N Clinton Street in Fort Wayne.