PANA, Ill. (WCIA) — A generous donation from a Shelbyville business is going toward the Autism and Movement Project Learning Center in Pana.
Through their partnership with CoBank, Shelby Electric Cooperative gifted $20,000 to the AAMP. The group helps kids with autism learn life and school skills. The money is going to several programs there, including the Brewin’ Hope Coffee House. The coffee shop employs people in the program.
The donation will also help run a sensory garden sponsored by the Pana Historical Society, as well as a sensory gym. Owner Erica Matthews said exercise lets the students focus better and helps them succeed in the classroom.
“Getting the brain and body to work together is the most important part. We do exercise, the kids do burpees, they do planks, they do different exercises as well because we want the body and brain to communicate.”
The AAMP’s goal is to help create a nurturing community.
“I want parents to have a sense of community as well, where they can have a place to come and talk to other parents that may be going through the same thing or getting ready to go through something as well,” Matthews said. “I want to create a place where the kids can explore different sensory ways to really expand outside their comfort zone.”