Accessibility Summit 2013 Highlights

Highlights of 2013 Accessibility Summit: time spent with parents, Key Ministry & 99 Balloons reps, as well as featured speakers Emily Colson & the Ferinnis.

Barb Dittrich, Laurie Hetherington, and Jolene Philo at the 2013 Accessibility Summit

My head’s still spinning and my feet are still hurting from standing a lot during the whirlwind weekend at the 2013 Accessibility Summit at McLean Bible Church in Vienna, Virginia.

The Best Thing About the Accessibility Summit

The absolutely best part of the Summit is meeting online friends like Laurie Hetherington in person. Connecting face-to-face, sharing information and pictures of our kids, and learning together is a little bit of heaven right here on earth. To hear these dear friends describe how DifferentDream.com posts have encouraged them or how resources featured here made life easier for them…well, all I can say is that the Summit should come with it’s own tissue warning!

The Second Best Thing About the Summit

The second best thing about the Summit is meeting people who run organizations that serve the special needs community. People like:

Emily Colson

Emily Colson who spoke about raising her son Max, who experiences autism. She’s also author of Dancing with Max, her memoir about life with her sweet son,

Access Summit Peeps

Front Row: Barb Dittrich, Katie Wetherbee
Back Row: Jolene Philo, Cindi Ferrini, Rebecah Hamilton

Barb Dittrich of Snappin’ Ministries,
Joe and Cindi Ferrini, authors of Unexpected Journey: When Special Needs Change our Course,
Katie Wetherbee and Rebecca Hamilton of Key Ministry,

Matt Mooney

Matt Mooney of 99 Balloons,
and those are only the people I was able to photograph!

The Third Best Thing About the Summit

The third best thing about the 2013 Summit was having fun with friends made there over the years doing things like:

Access Earplugs

having my photo taken with the earplugs given by my roomy, Barb Dittrich, who says she snores,

Jolene and Katie

taking preliminary photo pictures with co-author, Katie Wetherbee, in case our book proposal gets accepted by the publishing house discussing it this week,

Emily Colson

and going to supper at the Cheesecake Factory Saturday night with friends, laughing until our sides ached.

The Best Thing About Next Year’s Summit

And that brings us to the best thing about next year’s summit. For me, it will be seeing you there and then posting a photo of us in the highlights of the Accessibility Summit, 2014. If you attended this year’s summit, what were the highlights for you? If you didn’t attend, what needs to happen to get you there next year? Leave a comment!

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8 Comments

  1. April 23, 2013    

    I love this conference. The director at McClean Bible Church, Jackie has such a great heart and vision for helping all of us in special needs ministry. She is such a special lady. She helped our church launch our special needs ministry. This conference and church has been such an inspiration and teacher for our church!

  2. April 23, 2013    

    I love this conference. The director at McClean Bible Church, Jackie has such a great heart and vision for helping all of us in special needs ministry. She is such a special lady. She helped our church launch our special needs ministry. This conference and church has been such an inspiration and teacher for our church!

  3. April 23, 2013    

    It was such a joy to meet you too! I just wish we had another day to soak it all in…so much more I wanted to glean from all the speakers and exhibitors!

  4. April 23, 2013    

    It was such a joy to meet you too! I just wish we had another day to soak it all in…so much more I wanted to glean from all the speakers and exhibitors!

  5. April 24, 2013    

    Were your ears ringing on Friday evening, Ruth? A pastor’s wife and mom of a child with autism wondered if it was self-serving to start a special needs ministry at her church. I told her about how you did that and created a ministry that reaches out to many other families.

    Jolene

  6. April 24, 2013    

    Were your ears ringing on Friday evening, Ruth? A pastor’s wife and mom of a child with autism wondered if it was self-serving to start a special needs ministry at her church. I told her about how you did that and created a ministry that reaches out to many other families.

    Jolene

  7. April 24, 2013    

    I totally agree, Laurie. Another day would have been wonderful.

    Jolene

  8. April 24, 2013    

    I totally agree, Laurie. Another day would have been wonderful.

    Jolene

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Meet Jolene

Jolene Philo is a published author, speaker, wife, and mother of a son with special needs.

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