Henderson community event serves children with disabilities

HENDERSON, Texas (KETK) — A new organization, Learning Lab, launched with an event to serve over a thousand children with disabilities in Henderson.

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Community members were giving new life to a very special event while launching a new organization in Henderson to support children with disabilities in East Texas.

“Get out here, run around this football field and just have fun,” Rachelle Thrasher, the event organizer, said.

Friday evening was the kickoff to a new organization called the “Learning Lab” and it will serve children with disabilities throughout Rusk County.

“We are excited, and we want to be here to help these children and give them services,” Thrasher added.

It was founded after the “Sarah Murphy Field Day,” a track and field event for special needs students, was cancelled.

The community involved said they wanted to continue its legacy.

“We decided to keep the date and do an evening family-fun night and we’re excited to just keep growing it,” Shana Molant, Learning Lab program director, said.

The event will help built towards the organization opening their very own headquarters in downtown Henderson on Marshall Street.

They will serve more than 1,200 children in the county.

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“[The] main thing that we’re bringing is speech therapy,” Thrasher said. “We have occupational therapy. We are in the process to put in a sensory playground indoor.”

The organization is in the process of purchasing the building and hope it can open sometime in the fall.

“We are coming,” Thrasher said. “Just give us some time, but we are excited. We want to be here to help these children and give them services.”

Henderson’s mayor John ‘Buzz’ Fullen said a new playground is also coming that is specifically designed for children with disabilities.

“It’ll be a very large project,” Fullen said. “It’ll be about an $800,000 project.”

The new park will be an addition to Yates Park and Fullen said that it could be completed by the end of this year.

“We’re very impressed with the idea that we can do this park and serve the community quite well.” Fullen said.

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