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Posted: Jun 8, 2009 08:44


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Anne LaRiviere
Optimum Performance Institute
Woodland Hills, California
(888) 558-0617

Once OPI participants Amanda J., Scott S. and Matt D. decided on a unique Community Activity for April, their enthusiasm quickly spread until three local families with special needs were treated to a unique "Christmas in April" grocery shopping spree at a local grocery store.

Sixteen OPI participants spent weeks collecting nearly $700 from their fellow participants, as well as from OPI staff. In the end each family got $215 which they spent on everything from milk to diapers.

The participants met the families outside the store, divided into three groups and then assumed tasks: the first group was in charge of making sure each family stayed within their budget; the second group kept track of items on a calculator or pushed the carts and the last group was assigned to keep the small children occupied.

"They all were looking for sale items and trying to find the best deals," explained Christa Lopez, Acting Director of Career and Volunteer Services, who helped organize the event. "They were absolutely wonderful. I was so impressed."

The Participants contacted the North Los Angeles County Regional Center where Ms. Lopez used to work. Their staff selected the three families who could benefit the most.

At Optimum Performance Institute, one Community Service activity is mandated per month.

The Optimum Performance Institute is a highly individualized therapeutic and educational residential program for young adults ages 17-25. For further information contact Anne LaRiviere, Director of Admissions, (888) 558-0617.

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