Out of Her Shell: Danielle Travels Internationally
Griselda has been Danielle’s shared living provider since May 2013, shortly after the two met.
“During our very first meeting,” says Griselda, “I had a sense that Danielle would be a great addition to our family. She was sweet and gentle and seemed like a wonderful person who, in my opinion, only needed a good home in which to flourish.”
It took some time for Danielle to adjust to her new lifestyle and routine, as well as the culture of her new family. Griselda’s country of origin is Dominican Republic.
“When she came out of her shell, she started to bloom into this funny human being, full of life and spunk!” Griselda explains. “It was like magic how quickly she became like a daughter for me, and how my own children started to see her as a sister.”
Though Danielle has intellectual and developmental disabilities, and is non-verbal, Griselda says her body language speaks volumes about how happy she is in her home.
“Danielle is one happy girl,” says Melinda Quinn, LifeShare State Director of Rhode Island. “She’s always smiling and giggling, and Griselda always has Danielle’s best interests in mind.”
“After a few years,” says Griselda, “I decided it was time to take a vacation with Danielle and bring her back to my home country.”
Travelling with Danielle required her to obtain a passport, and so her mother and stepfather worked closely with LifeShare to make this happen.
“I was able to obtain the necessary documentation to take Danielle with me,” Griselda explains, “but I had my doubts even after our trip was booked and our suitcases were packed. I was afraid Danielle was not going to adjust to all the new experiences.”
Danielle proved Griselda wrong, handling the airplane trips and the new country with ease.
“She had a blast! She got to meet my large family and they, too, fell in love with Danielle by the end of our trip. They didn’t want to see her go.”
“I definitely will be going on more trips with Danielle so that she can enjoy her life to the fullest,” says Griselda.
“Danielle will forever have a home with me and I hope to stay alongside her for a very long time. The bond we share and my family shares with her is one of a kind.”
If you would like to learn more about being a shared living provider with LifeShare, like Griselda, click here.