Emerson Newman, age 3

Photograph by Andrea Romero (2021)

Emerson is sweet and caring. He’s a quiet but hard worker who is motivated by wanting to interact with other people. He especially loves playing with his brother and sister—and keeping them on their toes.

Spiderman, dinosaurs, trucks, and playing in the dirt are among Emerson’s favorite toys and activities. He also enjoys school and therapy because of the interaction with others.

His mom says his love of others always shines through. “Even though he has been sick for most of his life and often doesn’t feel well, Emerson still gives everyone his best.” This inspires his family to bring their best and they are proud to have learned from him.

Emerson is diagnosed with hemi hyperplasia and epilepsy, and displayed global delays since birth. While his diagnoses may present challenges for Emerson, his family enjoys watching him grow on his own timeline. “Even if we don’t always immediately understand him, it is important to take the time to stop and listen” says mom, Tonya. “What he has to say matters.”

Family Connection of South Carolina provides services and resources to families who have a child with a disability or specialized healthcare need. Since 1990 we have served more than 100,000 families and today our services are needed more than ever. We focus on parent-to-parent support, guidance with navigating the complex healthcare system, and assistance with school meetings and special education plans.

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