When Alexis Hedgepeth delivered her fraternal twins prematurely about three years ago, she knew there might be some developmental issues.
And there were. Her son Brayden received in-home therapy and, more recently, group therapy through a two-hour play group at the Tammy Lynn Center in Raleigh.
The good news is that Brayden is improving. Eventually, hell graduate from therapy altogether. The play group is his last transition.
Early intervention is the key, said Hedgepeth, who is studying childhood development at Wake Technical Community College. There were some signs early on and things that I had questions about.
The Tammy Lynn Center helped Hedgepeth get answers and also taught her ways to work with the twins. Braydens sister, Amiyah, was developing typically.
Formed in 1969, the Tammy Lynn Center was the vision of three Raleigh families who wanted to provide care for their children with developmental disabilities. The center is most often recognized for its residential program, but it also offers early-intervention programs and respite care for those who are able to keep their loved ones at home.
This year, Band Together NC, a nonprofit formed in 2001 that uses live music as a platform for social change, selected the Tammy Lynn Center as the beneficiary of its annual concert fundraiser. Tickets are on sale now for the May 4 concert at Carys Koka Booth Amphitheatre, featuring Lyle Lovett, Delta Rae, Chatham County Line and Wilmington-based Mac and Juice Quartet.
Matt Strickland, executive director of Band Together NC, has had an office at the center this year.
Ive been able to be in the mission, Strickland said. I know the staff here; I know the story. I can take people on tours. You really immerse yourself in the cause when youre on campus. Its been a blessing.
Holly Richards, CEO and president of the Tammy Lynn Center, said being selected by Band Together NC is like winning the lottery.
Its an experience that nonprofits, especially, dream about. To get this kind of financial support and to raise awareness for our mission and what we do, I dont even have the words to really articulate what that means. These are funds that we otherwise would not be able to raise.
The concert is on track to raise about $850,000 for the Tammy Lynn Center, roughly the amount the center needs to raise each year to provide services to its 400 families. The concert money will help the center add in-line oxygen to its facility as well as assistive communicative technology and to hire a bilingual therapist.
Although needs continue to change, the school remains true to its original mission.
We meet families where they are, Richards said. If you have a child thats 2 years old or an individual whos 60 years old, we come and do assessments and try to figure out how we can support that individual and that family.
There are no visiting hours at the Tammy Lynn Center. Families are encouraged to visit whenever they want, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.