For two decades, Toys R Us has been the go-to place for finding reliable toys for children with special needs. On Aug. 22, Toys R Us announced that the 2012 All-Around gymnastics Olympic gold medal winner, Gabby Douglas, is lending her support by being on the cover of the 2013 Toy Guide for Differently-Abled Kids,® along with adorable children Isabella Caesar and Samuel Lopez.
“Having started gymnastics at a very young age, with cartwheels in the backyard and splits on the couch, I came to understand the importance of teamwork and the influence that positive play can have on a child,” Gabby said in a press release sent out on Thursday. “My experience at the 2012 Olympic Games was very special, and through my support of this year’s Toys R Us Toy Guide for Differently-Abled Kids, I’m so excited to help children of all abilities have their own magical moments." She added, "With this great resource, parents can find toys that build key skills and help children reach new milestones, all while having fun!”
Through her support of this year’s Guide, Gabby Douglas is also helping to cheer on aspiring Special Olympics athletes. The Special Olympics Young Athletes program introduces kids to the world of sports and offers children with intellectual and developmental disabilities, ages 2-7, the opportunity to play, compete and grow, while developing critical early cognitive, social and motor skills. The Toys R Us Children’s Fund has provided ongoing grants to Special Olympics to support the national expansion of the Young Athletes program. Most recently, the toy retailer pledged $1 million to become a Founding Partner of the 2014 Special Olympics USA Games and Presenting Sponsor of the first-ever Young Athletes Festival, which will provide children and their families the opportunity to take part in the Young Athletes program, free health screenings, family seminars and more. The 2014 Special Olympics USA Games will take place in New Jersey from June 14 – 21, 2014.
“At Toys R Us, we understand the undeniable joy of watching a child overcome obstacles and experience victories through the magic of play, whether they’re learning to catch and throw a ball, role-playing through dress-up, playing a board game with siblings or learning the ABC’s on their very first tablet,” said Kathleen Waugh, Chairman of the Toys R Us Children’s Fund. “Building on our mission to help parents make informed toy-buying decisions with the Guide, we are pleased to introduce a complimentary Toys R Us App Guide for Differently-Abled Kids.”
This year, Toys R Us has partnered with Wynsum Arts, a social enterprise dedicated to making app discovery and mobile technology accessible to children of all abilities, to identify apps that are most appropriate for children who have special needs. Using the skills platform criteria featured in the trusted Guide, 25 apps were selected to create the company’s first-ever ToysR Us App Guide for Differently-Abled Kids, available online at Toysrus.com/DifferentlyAbled.
Parents and caregivers can determine their child’s specific skill-building needs, and then sort through the 25 apps for the most relevant fit. Like those toys featured within the Guide, at least two, color-coded skill-building icons are assigned to each app, which help users easily identify those most suitable for the child for whom they’re shopping. Apps featured within the 2013 App Guide include Swapsies – Occupations, PicSay – Photo Editor, Learning Letters for Kids, Bubble Buster and Cookie Dunk Jump, among many others. All apps featured within this helpful resource can be found in the Google Play Store for Android or the App Store for iOS.
Toys R Us stores are located throughout North Atlanta:
- Alpharetta - 7731 Northpoint Parkway; Alpharetta, GA 30022; (770) 518-9188.
- Duluth - 2205 Pleasant Hill Square; Duluth, GA 30096; (770) 885-1007.
- Buford - 3480 Financial Center Way; Buford, GA 30519; (678) 714-6146.
- Atlanta - 2997 Cobb Parkway South; Atlanta, GA 30339; (770) 970-2000.
- Kennesaw - 501 Roberts Court; Kennesaw, GA 30144; (770) 424-9100.
For more Atlanta locations, click on the Toys R Us store locator.
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