Mission Moments


Writer, artist, student and actor are just a few words that describe Dan. Having a disability does not slow him down for one second as he is always looking for a new adventure. Dan is currently writing a book about his life experiences using his communications device and is also working towards getting his GED online. In his spare time he enjoys creating art, doing yoga, and singing in the MSS choir.


Overcoming fear is one of the hardest and most rewarding things we can do for ourselves. Darcel conquered her fear when she decided to climb the rock wall at Vertical Endeavors. Our staff told her she could come with and watch the others climb, but when she saw everyone else participating, she gained the courage to give it a shot. She has told several staff members that she was so scared while she was waiting for her turn, but the second she started to climb she had let go of her fear. “I felt so free,” she said.


Jane Christensen is an MSS artist who has discovered her passion for self-portraiture. She takes on a wide variety of subjects from people, to abstract, to comic art, whenever she feels inspiration. She sketches from images in her imagination and adds different media and color as she goes along. One of her photographs was featured in I AM, a self-portrait exhibition at Altered Esthetics art gallery. Jane is proud of this accomplishment and sees herself as, “determined, strong and not disabled in making art.” We could not agree more.


Ila’s dreams come true! She spent an entire day recording music with her pal Mel in the recording studio at the Brooklyn Park center. “I made a record with Mel Wheeler!” she exclaimed when returning to the Shoreview that afternoon. Thanks Mel (piano) and Casey (guitar) for accompanying Ila and her beautiful singing voice!


MSS artists, along with family and friends, used a variety of experimental techniques to apply paint to a large canvas on the ground. When the piece could not hold any more paint, we improvised and laid a blank canvas on top of it. Then artists used their wheelchairs to roll over both pieces to create a “print” on the new canvas. This is a perfect example of the way MSS staff strive to make art accessible to everyone. Kelly was one of several  individuals who were able to contribute to the art project by using their wheelchairs!

Whether it’s a chance to create art, a program to manage autism anxiety, or an opportunity to be productive in the working world, Midwest Special Services sees possibility for every one who crosses our threshold. See what we mean.
Did you Know Read up on what the year 2015 looked like for Midwest Special Services by checking out our 2015 Annual Report!
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