Lekotek of Georgia, Inc.

Making a Difference for Children with Disabilities

Atlanta, GA   |  www.lekotekga.org

Mission

Lekotek of Georgia's mission is to facilitate the inclusion of children with disabilities into their families, schools and communities by providing accessible play, adapted toys, technology, information and resources.

To achieve this mission, Lekotek provides the following:
• Accessible play environments with specialized toys and computer equipment
• Information on resources outside of Lekotek
• Family support groups and social and outdoor activities
• Technical assistance to parents and professionals on play and technology
• Innovative software, technology, and educational solutions

Ruling year info

1983

Executive Director

Helene Prokesch

Main address

1901 Montreal Rd. Suite #126

Atlanta, GA 30084 USA

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EIN

58-1535266

NTEE code info

Specialized Education Institutions/Schools for Visually or Hearing Impaired, Learning Disabled (B28)

Developmentally Disabled Services/Centers (P82)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Children with disabilities face challenges interacting with family members and participating in school and community activities. Often because of various barriers, the children and their families don't have the opportunities to play, learn and socialize like typical children. That's why we're here. Lekotek's mission is inclusion and we strive to level the playing field so children with special needs can play, particpate and learn. Lekotek continues to grow and have waiting lists for families in need of services

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Toy/Computer Lending Library

Lekotek's toy/computer inventory is comprised of more than 4,000 select toys, software programs, adapted input devices, and computers. From rattles and drums to touch windows, adapted keyboards and staff written software, seeing, hearing, and touching toys make it possible for children to master skills. During one-hour play sessions, Lekotek leaders model the creative use of the toys and computer equipment for each child.  Families are encouraged to use the toys to create a playful and educational environment at home.
Computers and software which are possibly the most powerful toys in Lekotek’s inventory, are essential to the Lekotek program. As the community has become aware of Lekotek’s need for equipment, individuals and corporations have continued to donate Macintosh and PC compatible systems. These systems are also loaned to families. Before a system is borrowed, Lekotek leaders customize it and train parents to use it. This unique lending program provides an excellent opportunity for children with disabilities to experience technolgy and its benefits.

Population(s) Served

The Compuplay program is designed to meet the needs of individuals between the ages of 2 and 22. Youngsters and parents attend five one-hour, weekly family sessions to enjoy and learn from computer play. Compuplay focuses on the use of adaptive peripherals (alternative input devices to the standard mouse), customized equipment and software to enhance speech, writing, reading, cognitive, and fine-motor skills. State-of-the--art technology equalizes the playing field making it possible for everyone to participate together. Staff-written software with large icons makes it possible for children with visual impairments and fine motor delays to use the programs. Adapted software that includes auditory and visual scanning for children who are blind or hearing impaired is available. With an array of color, graphics, music, and sound prompts, these programs provide opportunities for successful learning. Hardware options include adapted joysticks, head mice, touch screens, switch adapted trackballs, keyboards with keyguards, and switches for scanning. Children who cannot use a keyboard, see the screen, or read a printed page, can use these devices. During Compuplay, children enjoy reading and writing stories, playing music, learning math concepts, word processing, and problem solving. Computer assisted learning is making it possible for children with disabilities to participate with their siblings and peers.

Population(s) Served

During the past decade, there has been a significant increase in premature births resulting in developmental delays and lengthy hospital stays. Conducting play sessions at the hospital helps to normalize the hospital environment as infants, parents, grandparents, and siblings interact with one another and learn through play. Parents frequently comment, “With each bag of toys, Lekotek brought hope and joy.” In addition to neonatal play sessions, Lekotek leaders work with children with disabilities of all ages who are hospitalized. With a laptop and a Lekotek bag filled with developmentally appropriate toys, Lekotek leaders conduct hospital play sessions. Lekotek plans to expand its relationship with Atlanta-area hospitals and neonatal units.

Population(s) Served

Lekotek offers an annual four-week summer computer camp for children between the ages of 4 and 13. Children with disabilities are asked to invite a sibling or friend to participate with them. Technology is an equalizer as children with and without disabilities participate together.

Population(s) Served

Sibshops create opportunities for brothers and sisters of children with special needs to meet other siblings and gain support in a fun atmosphere. Brothers and sisters who have the longest relationship with the person with special needs have much to offer each other. The Sibshop model intersperses information and discussion activities with ice-breakers, fun games, and computer activities. Sibshops are not therapy, although their effect may be therapeutic. Lekotek is extremely proud to be a registered Sibshop that has been certified by Don Meyer and the Sibling Support Project.

Population(s) Served

For adolescents who “graduate” from play sessions, club creates learning and social opportunities for children with disabilities to play and learn together. Typical peers from Atlanta area high schools and colleges participate and act as role models and peer mentors.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Awards

To Executive Director and Founder, Helene Prokesch, for Outstanding Leadership 2001

National Lekotek Founder’s Award

For Services of Excellence to Individuals with Disabilities 2002

Bobby Dodd Award

Initiative of the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta 2008

Planet Philanthropy

Inclusion Champion 2010

Mitsubishi Electric Foundation

Advocating for Music Therapy 2011

Music Therapy Association of Georgia

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of clients who report general satisfaction with their services

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

No target populations selected

Related Program

Toy/Computer Lending Library

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This is based on our annual family survey

Number of families who report they are supported in utilizing natural supports in their communities (e.g., family, friends, neighbors, churches, colleges, recreational services)

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

No target populations selected

Related Program

Toy/Computer Lending Library

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This is based on our annual family survey.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

• Children and families learn how to play and have fun together.
• Children have an increased sense of self esteem.
• Children and families have increased participation in the community.
• Families feel supported.
• Families have knowledge and use of technology, toys and resources to enhance their child's life.

Strengthen the board
Ensure succession readiness
Maximize utilization of capacity
Monitor Lekotek outcomes and success
Analyze family intake to better direct market
Expand methods for families to make payment
Ensure staff is The Best
Fully utilize capacity of current staff, and increase staff as needed
Build relationships with referral sources
Develop new programs based upon parent feedback
Increase Lekotek's awareness within the disability and non-disability communities
Explore and leverage Board connections
All Board members will fundraise
Expand donor base and general sponsorship
Develop service organization relationships
Maintain fiscal well being

Lekotek's approach is unique in using adapted toys, educational materials and computer equipment making it possible for everyone to participate and learn along the way. With customized solutions and “state of the art" technology everyone is a “player". Lekotek of Georgia is a nonprofit that supports children with special needs and their families by providing accessible play, adaptive technology & toys, information and resources to facilitate inclusion in family and community life.

FY Goal 2017 Result
Percent of families who play together more often. 90%
Percent of parents who have acquired new skills that help their child learn through play. 90%
Percent of families who feel more comfortable participating in community activities with their child. 89%
Percent of families who receive helpful information and resources. 92%
Percent of families that have increased working knowledge of adaptive toys, software and technology. 97%
Percent of families that provide their child developmentally appropriate toys at home. 94%

Financials

Lekotek of Georgia, Inc.
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Lekotek of Georgia, Inc.

Board of directors
as of 5/19/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Bonnie Patrick

Retired

Term: 2016 - 2018


Board co-chair

Mary Beth Sierra

Coulter and Sierra

Term: 2016 - 2018

Susan Wolkin

Fulton County Schools

Bonnie Patrick

Retired Rich's

Michael Price

CEO Ventures

Stan Ruszkowski

Independent Consultant

Mary Beth Sierra

Colter & Sierra

Scott Thompson

Piedmont Construction Group

Nicole Rijo

CEO Ventures

Beth Burton

State Attorney General's Office

Matt Pearl

WXIA TV 11 Alive

Danielle Ayers

ToolBank USA

Meg Flynn

Children's Healthcare

Tommy Beman

BB&T

Laura Eschleman

Nall and Miller

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes