Veronica & Raymond Garcia
Veronica is a long devoted dance teacher in the special needs community, mother of an amazing little boy with autism, past dance studio owner, fitness professional, and founder of DanceMinds®.
Raymond holds a B.A. Business Management, a certificate in Child Mental Health and years of experience in social services. He loves being behind the scenes in providing programs and help to young kids and families. He is the president of the non-profit 501c3, JMM Dance Co.
As parents,Veronica and Raymond have learned to be advocates for their son in order to acquire the best resources to help him live life with confidence and quality. They have participated in numerous programs such as ABA therapy, OT, ST, etc. and in the background always had their own recreational programs setup for their child. While taking notes and comparing data, they realized that what was truly making the difference in their child’s development in leadership, confidence and social emotional intelligence were the S.E.L, recreational dance programming provided at home.
The idea of “Moves Made 4 Me” began to develop in 2009. Veronica had been teaching dance to special need adults in adult day programs and noticed that the expectations teachers and providers put on them were so low. She knew she had to one day change this cycle and for years through trial and error started to develop strategies, lessons and a series of tools to use. She would also participate as a vendor in may resource fairs and events that support special need students and adults. When Raymond and Veronica faced the same troubles, rejection and frustrations that most parents of special need individuals face, that is when they decided they were not going to allow their son or any child to be given labels and low expectations by other people. They put their minds together and finished the development of “Moves Made 4 Me”a life skills program that utilizes dance made with the tools appropriate for kids with special needs that is divided in 6 classes by age group with the emphasis on developing milestones alongside atypical developing peers. Veronica strongly believe kids with special needs must learn to express themselves by learning to use the abilities they do poses with pride in order to unleash confidence and a world of possibilities.
Eli Garcia, their son and the inspiration to this program, is brave, bold and a testimony. He continues to overcome and push through the obstacles he faces with his conditions of autism (SPD), asthma and sleep-apnea. Veronica, Raymond and Eli are here to share their story, experiences and creativity with the world. They hope to inspire other kids with special needs and their families through their inclusive dance program “Moves Made 4 Me.”™