Hampton Moose Lodge EPIC Toy Donation Will Help Children Reach Developmental Milestones

An EPIC (pun intended) donation by the Hampton Moose Lodge will make a difference for families and children served by VersAbility Resources.

The local lodge donated $2,000 to purchase new toys for the nonprofit’s EPIC program, which stands for Early Prevention and Intervention for Children Program. EPIC supports families with infants or toddlers experiencing developmental delays by coordinating tailored therapy to help every child reach his or her potential.

EPIC offers free developmental screenings for any child living in Hampton and Newport News under the age of 3. Referrals come from Infant and Toddler Connection of Virginia when a child may not be reaching developmental milestones. Parents can seek an assessment for a multitude of reasons; it’s never too early for intervention. All it takes is a 25% delay in one developmental area to qualify a child for services. A child can also qualify due to a diagnosed condition that could lead to a developmental delay in the future or atypical development which is the quality of how a developmental skill is being performed.

If a delay is found, therapists from the EPIC program work with children one-on-one in their homes, parks, Grandma’s house or wherever the child spends time. EPIC empowers parents and caregivers to take the lead, so progress is made between appointments. The child will be gifted one or more toys that target the specific area needed for development.

The assortment of toys include stacking rings, potato heads, contrast books and blocks, shape sorters and educational ones from LeapFrog and VTech.

“These toys are going to be such a blessing for the families who receive them,” said Robin Drummond, Manager of the EPIC program. “Some of them help promote imaginary play and hand-eye coordination. Some promote problem-solving skills, manipulating small objects and motor and sensory development.”

Black, white and red visual contrast books will help children who are experiencing visual delays. These books will help newborns and infants develop focus, attention span and concentration. The toys that make sounds promote interaction, which is a pathway to developing communication skill. Some toys promote crawling and others, walking.

Typically, EPIC Support Coordinators work with what a family already has at home.

“These are going to mean so much to the families who receive them,” Drummond said.

The donation idea stems from Renee’ Rose, Chief Operations Officer at VersAbility, talking with her longtime partner, Ed Frankiewicz, Administrator of the Hampton Moose Lodge. He suggested to the members of the lodge that they donate money for the toy purchase. Newport News Moose Lodge will also donate $1,250 in toys.

Added Drummond, “We’re so appreciative.”

VersAbility Resources Receives EPIC Grant from Chartway Promise Foundation

VersAbility Resources has been awarded a $5,000 grant from the Chartway Promise Foundation to support the nonprofit’s Early Prevention and Intervention for Children Program (EPIC) that supports young children with developmental delays and their parents.

The family-oriented program is for infants and toddlers under the age of 3 who live in Hampton and Newport News. VersAbility offers free screenings that assess a child’s needs. If a disability or delay is found, families and caregivers can receive support and training through tailored therapy programs to help children reach developmental milestones. A VersAbility service coordinator, assigned during the intake process, works closely with the family to create an individualized family service plan for the child.

“We’re grateful for the support from Chartway Promise Foundation, one of our many generous community partners,” said Kasia, Grzelkowski, President and CEO of VersAbility. “The funds to the EPIC program help children reach their full potential so they can be successful in school, work and life.”

Chartway Promise Foundation is the charitable arm of Chartway Credit Union.

“Chartway Promise Foundation strengthens the communities we serve by partnering with companion charities like VersAbility,” said Christine Wilson, President of Chartway Promise Foundation. “That’s why we’re honored to make a difference right here in Hampton – bringing joy, hope and smiles to children through this partnership.”

VersAbility Resources supports people with disabilities in leading productive and fulfilling lives of their choosing.

Join or Renew Your BJ’s Membership with Special Rate in July to Support VersAbility Resources

Join or renew your membership to BJ’s before July 31, 2023, and you’ll be supporting VersAbility Resources.

For every new membership to the wholesale club, the Hampton nonprofit with a mission to help people with disabilities live full lives of their choosing receives $10. For every renewal, VersAbility will receive $5.

New members can join with a special promotional rate of $25 and receive a $10 reward. Renewals are $55 and include a $10 reward credited to your account or $110 to renew a rewards membership. Rewards members who renew in July will receive a $20 credit. Members whose renewal date is not in July can still extend their membership during this fundraiser and 12 months will be added onto their current expiration date.


Call 800-313-8887 weekdays between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m., to join BJ’s or renew and reference Promo code 500313. BJ’s accepts credit and debit cards only for this promotion. No online option is available to receive this special rate.

BJ’s members save up to 25% on grocery store prices and members can use the mobile app for same-day delivery and pickup. The club sells household goods, fresh foods, groceries, TVs, computers, patio furniture and more.


BJ’s has multiple stores throughout Virginia, including a Hampton location at 2000 Power Point Parkway. Members also receive additional savings in fuel purchases.

VersAbility Resources is a leading provider of comprehensive services for people with disabilities of all ages. VersAbility provides early childhood, residential, day support and diverse employment programs throughout Hampton Roads and beyond.


VersAbility Receives Grant from The Wawa Foundation to Support Able Acres Market Garden

Wawa helps customers fuel their days with food, beverages, coffee and gas.

Now the nationwide convenience store is also helping to fuel our mission here at VersAbility Resources.

VersAbility is proud to announce it recently received a $1,000 grant from The Wawa Foundation to use as fuel for its Project Independence program.

Project Independence offers people with disabilities support, skill development, tools and resources to help them reach their highest level of independence.

The grant funds will specifically allow VersAbility to expand the program offerings by creating inclusive community events that nurture self-determination, independence, sense of belonging and authentic community integration. Specifically, this grant will support the nonprofit’s Able Acres Market Garden.

VersAbility helps ensure people with disabilities enjoy dignified, productive lives of their choosing. As part of that mission team members helped start its own market garden, Able Acres. Able Acres Market Garden is primarily led by adults with disabilities attending the Day Support program.

Four raised beds are filled with young vegetable plants and edible flowers.

The adults in VersAbility’s Day Support programs who have identified an interest in gardening and plants completed the initial planting and are responsible for sowing and harvesting. Participants in the program engage with the community every Thursday as part of Peninsula Farmers Market held at the Jewish Community Center in Newport News.

The Wawa Foundation’s purpose is Fulfilling Lives Every Day, by Building Stronger Communities. The foundation has contributed more than $135 million to support organizations making a difference in the lives of so many in the areas of Health, Hunger and Everyday Heroes. VersAbility is one of the more than 6,000 nonprofit partners that the foundation supports.

VersAbility is a leading provider of comprehensive services for people with disabilities of all ages. VersAbility provides early childhood, residential, day support and diverse employment programs throughout Hampton Roads and beyond.

Spark Good by Rounding Up Your Online Purchase at Walmart to Support VersAbility Resources

Donate to VersAbility Resources by rounding up every time you shop online at Walmart.

Walmart’s Spark Good Round Up program allows customers to round up their purchase total to the nearest dollar and donate the change to a public charity of their choice when shopping online. When you create an account, select VersAbility Resources as your charity to support its mission of helping people of all ages with disabilities to live, work and thrive in our community.

The Hampton nonprofit serves more than 1,800  people with disabilities and their families from Hampton, Newport News, Poquoson, York County, and the 10 counties on the Middle Peninsula and Northern Neck. Services range from coordinating developmental therapies for children to building successful business partnerships that provide staffing solutions for employers and provide jobs in Hampton Roads and beyond for people with disabilities.

Shop for what you need at Walmart and give that extra change to VersAbility. It’s that easy to make a difference in your community!

Langley for Families Foundation Grant to Benefit VersAbility’s EPIC Program

Thanks to the Langley for Families Foundation, VersAbility Resources can now serve more children with disabilities.

Earlier this month the Langley for Families Foundation awarded VersAbility a grant to support families in need of emergency supplies for the care of a disabled child. These supplies range from diapers and formula to emergency clothing in times of need.

The $5,000 grant will support the Critical Needs Fund for VersAbility’s Early Prevention and Intervention for Children Program (EPIC), which assists children with developmental delays and their families to reach each developmental milestone.

Infancy and early childhood are critical times in human development. Children under the age of 3 with disabilities need specialized therapies to prepare them for success in school, work and life. Failure to provide these supports comes at a cost to each child, their family and the community. Through the EPIC program, nearly 700 children with disabilities receive tailored therapies annually, maximizing their abilities and future potential.

Langley for Families focuses its charitable giving on healthcare, housing and human services, and access to education for children and families in the Hampton Roads area.

VersAbility’s EPIC program provides free developmental screenings for any child under the age of 3 living in Hampton and Newport News. VersAbility serves each referral, regardless of budget constraints or the family’s ability to pay.

VersAbility Resources supports more than 1,500 people with disabilities and their families from Hampton, Newport News, Poquoson, York County and the 10 counties on the Middle Peninsula and the Northern Neck.

New Chief Human Resource Officer Inspired by VersAbility Mission

Mike Godwin discovered early in life that he had a knack for connecting with people.

VersAbility Resources’ new Chief Human Resource Officer enjoyed recruiting others to join organizations in high school, a talent that continued in college when the psychology major persuaded students to join his fraternity, Delta Upsilon, and Key Club.

“I became a recruiter right out of college,” said Godwin, a graduate of the University of Florida who later earned his MBA from the Darla Moore School of Business in Dublin, Ireland. Early on, he recruited nurses before going on to become an operations manager of a small company.

Over the years, he worked in sales, human resources for a major hospital system and even started his own behavioral health company in New Orleans. His resume includes six years as Vice President of Human Resources at Eggleston Services, a Norfolk-based organization that provides education, training and employment for people with disabilities. He left in 2017 to become Owner and CEO of two consulting companies, but the experience at Eggleston inspired him to do more to help people with disabilities gain employment and live full lives.

That passion is what drives him in his new position at VersAbility.

“Helping people with disabilities has been the most rewarding, fulfilling part of my career,” he said.

Godwin manages a team of eight at the Hampton nonprofit with a focus on hiring those who excel at providing rehabilitative services and support to adults with disabilities.

“I knew if I was going to go back to working for someone else, it had to be with a great company,” Godwin said.  “I really have pride in VersAbility. It’s a phenomenal company and mission.”

Both of Godwin’s parents were social workers and a cousin of his has Down syndrome. Godwin often accompanied his father to work as a youngster, where he was exposed to patients in a large psychiatric treatment center.

“At one point, my goal was to be a psychiatrist, but I decided to go the business route,” he said. “That led to recruiting and HR. I was able to see the impact different hospitals had on the community. It’s a fantastic feeling to see that what you do actually means something.”

Godwin has a long list of what he wants to accomplish at VersAbility. Included are:

  • A focus on diversity, inclusion and procedural justice. “VersAbility is a big proponent of diversity and inclusion so it’s important to ensure we’re offering opportunities to everybody regardless of race, creed, religion, gender and especially, disability status,” he said.
  • Expanding opportunities for veterans “I think it would be awesome to increase opportunities for veterans, especially disabled veterans,” he said.
  • Encouraging more people to make a career as a Direct Support Professional (DSP). Those who work as DSPs work one-on-one with people with disabilities to help them become successful at whatever they are doing. “So many people need help in the community and so many people want to help,” Godwin said. “It’s a really rewarding job.”
  • Increasing national and international employment opportunities for people with disabilities. “We’d love to see our growth continue in that area because this company does the right thing,” he said. “That means more people with disabilities have the opportunity to get a fair wage and to receive good treatment under fair management.”

Outside of work, Godwin and his wife, Holli, are parents to one son, Desmond, 18 months. Holli’s passion for animal rescue means the family is often fostering multiple dogs at once at their Newport News home. They are also regular SPCA volunteers.

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