Mission in Action

J is a 15 year old that has been with The Arc since December of 2017. J grew up in foster care placements and behavioral health settings as he has a history of aggression, elopement and property destruction.

J is a sophomore at Joplin High School and has struggled with anxiety and aggression at school in the past. He is now making great strides in his learning and confidence at school. In fact, he recently read his first book completely and independently at school.

On April 25th, J will compete in Special Olympics for the first time. This is something he is very excited to participate. When asked if he wanted to run the 100 meter or the 200 meter, he replied “I want to run the whole thing.” He then ran the 400 meter in 1:56! He now wants to try out for cross country and track next August and has been running with the Assistant Track Coach of Joplin High School.

J did not have an adequate pair of running shoes but has recently been sponsored by The Runaround in

Joplin. He was fitted for a pair of custom shoes at their shop and spent time with the shop’s mascot. He has been running with his staff each day for the last few weeks and is very excited for this opportunity. His face lights up when he is on the track.