Fundraiser helps parents with special needs kids


The Determined Parents Foundation founders Heidi Dawson and Kelly Tipple-Moran held their first annual DPF 5K Walk/Run/Roll and Family Fun Day event on Saturday at Lake Tye Park (14964 Fryelands Blvd. S.E.) in Monroe.
The fundraising event was meant to spread awareness about the mission of the Determined Parents Foundation, which is to help support the parents of special needs kids through advocacy and financial assistance. The Sultan-based nonprofit provides grants to pay for things like insurance co-pays, deductibles and special therapies that aren't typically covered by insurance.
Both parents to special needs children, Tipple-Moran and Dawson have learned over the years how to best navigate the intricacies of raising a special needs child. Accustomed to things like negotiating with insurance companies, addressing insurance policy deficiencies and seeking out experimental therapies, the two started the Determined Parents Foundation as a way of sharing their journey with other parents.
Tipple-Moran's son Jack, 6, was born with cerebral palsy, a neurological disorder that hampers the brain's ability to control muscle movement. Jack is currently flourishing thanks to proactive care and occupational therapy. Dawson's son Patrick, soon to be 9, was diagnosed with a neurological disability called Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) when he was 6. SPD causes sensory signals in the brain to become confused, resulting in what specialists have described as a "neurological traffic jam.GÇ¥
Patrick is successfully learning to manage his condition through various therapies including a multi-sensory therapy called Integrated Listening Systems (ILS). Additionally, Dawson has worked closely with the Sultan School District in order to help ensure her son's educational success.
Dawson and Tipple-Moran started the foundation in 2013, and became an official 501C3 nonprofit in 2014.
For more information about the Determined Parents Foundation, please visit:, or the Facebook page at:


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