Giving Matters
8:35 am
Sat July 21, 2012

Zebra Crossings

Zebra Crossings provides opportunities for kids with chronic health conditions to expand their experiences and grow their independence. Heather Hesse-Stromberg’s eight-year-old daughter, Haiden, has asthma.

Haiden: It’s a chance for kids to do activities they don’t usually get to do and it’s a chance for kids to make new friends.

Heather: So it builds a community for the children that’s safe with a nurse available in case anyone should have any medical emergencies. Zebra Crossings has become really an essential part of our lives with Haiden. We have seen a dramatic transformation from a shy child to a child who is willing to put herself out there. And I really credit Zebra Crossings with giving her the opportunity to become the child that she is.

The first program that Haiden attended was circus camp. That is the kind of thing that, in the past, might have paralyzed Haiden: the thought of having to perform. Everyone was cheering and applauding for each other as if they were the best clowns anyone had ever seen. I saw Haiden’s eyes bigger than saucers watching everyone with this unconditional acceptance.

Every time she had a chance to perform anything after that, she gave it a shot. And that led up to her singing in front of her class.