The Coshocton County Beacon February 11, 2021 - Page 2

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2 • The Beacon February 11 , 2021
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CHS grad starts a new support group

By Jen Jones
The hope of finding someone like herself was a big reason Lacey Richcreek started a new support group called Beauty in Disability .
Richcreek is a 2020 graduate of Coshocton High School and has mild cerebral palsy . “ It affects how I do pretty much everything , so I just do things a bit differently . I walk with crutches in public most of the time , and I ’ m unable to handwrite unless you can decode sloppy scribbles .
“ I had a lot of help starting Beauty in Disability . There is a girl I met on Instagram three years ago from New Jersey named Melissa Serrano . She also has CP but on a much milder level than myself . She is great emotional support to help me make decisions for the group . Caleb Wells from Wichita has also helped shape my ideas into ways I can make them possible . I greatly appreciate their help ,” she said .
Richcreek said she wanted to start the group because she only had a handful of people in her life that looked like her . “ I wanted to have people share their stories and become friends . I want people to be able to relate

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Lacey Richcreek
to the experiences too . Right now , most of the people we have all have cerebral palsy , but any disability is welcome to join us ,” she said .
The online group meets once a week , usually on Saturday or Sunday . “ We are hoping to change how society views people with disabilities too ,” Richcreek said .
Richcreek is hoping to someday have a website full of resources , guides and firsthand experiences from people who live
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BF-00503912 with disabilities every day . She also said 2021 will be their first fiscal year , so they will be able to raise money and help more people . Fundraisers will be held to raise money , possibly later this year .
The group has already hosted its first special guest . Zachery Dereniowski was part of a presentation on Jan . 8 .
“ He is a mental-health advocate and works to make people more aware of mental illnesses . He is big on TikTok and Instagram . It was awesome because he came and just wanted to learn about how to treat others with disabilities ,” Richcreek said . “ That was awesome and humbling to have someone who has a totally different life who wanted to learn about how we live .”
Beauty in Disabilities will hold another workshop on Saturday , Feb . 20 at 10 a . m . and 6:30 p . m . It will be called Disability 101 and will cover many types of disabilities . Richcreek and Wells will be presenting the information and answering questions . The workshop is free to join .
Anyone with disabilities or who would like to learn more about disabilities is welcome to join the group . “ We just ask that they be respectful ,” Richcreek said .
For more information check the group ’ s Facebook or Instagram page or email beautyindisability @ gmail . com .
“ The group has already helped me find more meaning in life ,” Richcreek said . “ I feel happier than I have in a long time . I was really lonely for most of my life . I didn ’ t have anyone to hang out with in school , and the people who I do hang out with are all older than me . So this has expanded friendships in my own generation .”


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