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Pat Farmer, internationally renowned movement education specialist and Founder/President of Allegro Foundation, has devoted more than three decades to the education and advocacy of children with disabilities.
Remarkably, Pat firmly conceptualized her life goal at the age of 17 following her extensive volunteer experience in a mental institution for individuals with intellectual disabilities: to develop an empirically-based method for teaching children with disabilities.
Following the death of her husband in 1998, Ms. Farmer closed Pacific Foundation and transferred its 501(c)3 status to her hometown of Charlotte, North Carolina, where a year later, she launched its continuation, Allegro Foundation…a Champion for Children with Disabilities. Since 2000, Allegro Foundation has empowered thousands of children with disabilities through movement education, teaching vital health-related, social, emotional, and academic skills.
Lead by Ms. Farmer, Allegro Foundation combines movement instruction with educational and medical expertise, creating NEW techniques to teach children with disabilities and enhance their quality of life. Allegro currently teaches more than 800 children annually who have intellectual disabilities, Down syndrome, autism, orthopedic challenges (wheelchairs and walkers), spina bifida, cerebral palsy, learning disabilities, muscular dystrophy, visual and hearing impairments, children at risk and children with cancer in FREE movement education classes each week. Allegro Foundation’s techniques and philosophies have been published in numerous scientific reference books, including “The Owner’s Manual for the Brain” by Dr. Pierce Howard.
Pat Farmer was officially recognized as a national leader in working with children with disabilities in 2004 when Allegro Foundation made history as the first organization of children with disabilities to present at The White House. After an excellent reception, the First Lady personally invited Ms. Farmer to return with Allegro to present at The White House again in 2005.
In 2007, Ms. Farmer was appointed by the President to select nationally recognized Coming Up Taller Award recipients on a committee chaired by First Lady Laura Bush. On a return trip to Washington, Allegro’s students performed for the National Independence Day Celebration at the Washington Monument and at Walter Reed Army Medical Center for wounded soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.
On an international level, Ms. Farmer periodically presents Allegro’s techniques to delegates from the political, educational, and medical fields, including those from Ukraine, Russia, Hungary, Egypt, Monaco, Ecuador, and Yemen in partnership with the United States State Department and the Library of Congress - See Research/Allegro Institute for a full list. * Allegro does not travel to foreign countries nor financially support any international travel.
Additionally, Ms. Farmer has presented her techniques and philosophies to students earning their graduate degrees at UCLA, University of North Carolina, and Duke University, and most recently has lectured at Carolinas Medical Center, Society for the Arts in Healthcare, NC Arts for Health Training Institute, and the VSA/Kennedy Center’s International Conference in Washington, DC.
Allegro Foundation… a Champion for Children with Disabilities is a local non-profit headquartered in Charlotte, NC. Now in our 29th year as an independent organization, we provide our movement education programs FREE OF CHARGE to children and their families living in the Charlotte Mecklenburg and York County, South Carolina communities.
Did you know that Allegro Foundation accepts matching gifts?
If your place of employment has a matching gift program and you are already a donor to Allegro, then please consider adding Allegro to your company’s list of approved charities. Not only will you double the impact of your donation, but you will be helping Allegro continue our mission to bring FREE movement education programs to families of children living with disabilities throughout North and South Carolina.