Transformation - Annual Report 2015 - The Harris Center - Page 7

TRANSFORMING LIVES “I Am Somebody” The Harris Center has a special group of people who bring joy and inspire others when they walk into any room. Made up of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, the Texas Home Living Choir performed in front of hundreds this past fiscal year, and they have bookings for several future events. The choir is a component of the day program from The Harris Center’s Texas Home Living Waiver. It provides a unique opportunity for its members to learn social and leisure skills while also incorporating opportunities for increased physical activity through singing and dancing. A key goal for the program is to help participants achieve selfdetermination. At the end of each practice, individuals recite an empowering poem with energy and passion: I am somebody. I may not look like everybody, But I am somebody. I feel like I am somebody. I look like I am somebody. I act like I am somebody. Everybody is somebody to somebody. Nobody but nobody can make me feel like a nobody. If you want to love somebody, then love me! If you want to help somebody, then help me! I am somebody and don’t you ever forget it! Their impact is powerful and goes beyond their lively synchronized choreographies. Members of the audience are often moved to tears when they hear their uplifting songs. Their performances help people see and appreciate their abilities. Through their uplifting interpretations, the Texas Home Living Choir spread encouragement and illustrate our resounding message: Individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities are defined by their unique strengths and abilities, not by their disabilities. Annual Report 2015 | Transformation | 5