My Name is Allen Bedell. Thank you for taking a moment of your time to read the following. As I begin this testimony, my prayer is that your heart and mind would
be open to hearing the prompting of God in the area of “the special needs population.”
I pray that God would use me this moment to offer hope to those who are in need.
1. My personal life today.
2. My daughter Jenee’s life and impact
3. My involvement in Steps of Hope.
1. At this time, I am enjoying a walk with God far beyond anything that I had ever imagined possible – a daily relationship with my Heavenly Father on the edge of unbelievable. This year: my wife, Jan, and I celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary. I turned 62 years young. I am enjoying the addition of my second grandchild, Carter, to our family. The addition of his mom Alysa, my youngest daughter; her husband Scott; my son, and Carter’s older sister Kenzie into our household has been a huge blessing. This year also finds our entire family in deep sorrow following the loss of our oldest daughter Jenee’.
2. Our daughter, Jenee’, was born May 6, 1977 two weeks premature, weighing 5 lbs 4 oz. Due to the circumstances surrounding her birth she came into this world by way of an emergency c-section. For her; the beginning of life was a struggle, as were most of the things in her day to day life for the next 37 years. As parents, Jan and I were totally ill-prepared for a child with “special needs”. If you are a parent in a similar situation, you have some understanding and empathy of the life-changing effect the birth of your child had and continues to have on your lives. For example: Jenee’s grandmother was afraid to pick her up at first as she was so small. We had to teach her to suck in order to receive the nourishment needed to survive. At four years of age, we were told that she would never be able to do a myriad of things, including being able to read. That moment was the beginning of a ten year search for help for our daughter. After multiple unfruitful and disappointing visits to medical and therapeutic possibilities for Jenee’; as a last ditch heel dragging attempt, I agreed to take Jenee’ to a neurodevelopmentalist. I could barely say the word; much less understand what it meant. That meeting changed our lives. Jan and I received a powerful blessing of hope for the future of our daughter. About six weeks after starting to work “the neurodevelopmental program” with Jenee’, a pathway in the brain was created. The brain and the eyes were “communicating” as they were designed by God to function. We began to lovingly call that moment, a little giant step. That little step (connections made in the brain through stimulation) was a GIANT step in her ability to function.
The impact in Jenee’s life:
She learned to read and enjoy reading. Her communication skills improved to where she was able to communicate better and to joke with others. She was able to hold down a job for several years and enjoy the tremendous boost in self esteem that comes with that achievement. There were so many, many more “little giant steps” in her life.
That brings me to the impact of Jenee’s life.
As the following years went by, Jan was called to share the neurodevelopmental approach with others. As Jan answered that call, a small family business was birthed. The company was named Little Giant Steps, which was later incorporated as LGS Services, Inc. The number of children and families that have been impacted by Jenee’s life and the formation of a little family business is innumerable. As of today, there are families in 48 of the 50 United States, Canada, South America, Europe, Asia and Australia who have been impacted by Jenee’ life.
3. Steps of Hope
Lee and Linda Kane introduced Jan and I to the neurodevelopmental approach. Lee and Linda have a similar testimony concerning their son Scott. From their experiences was birthed a company called Hope and a Future. The Bedells and the Kanes –Little Giant Steps and Hope and a Future; respectfully, co-founded a nonprofit organization aptly called Steps of Hope. The initial intent and purpose of Steps of Hope was to provide scholarship monies to families that were unable to afford the services and or products that can bring them hope and a better future.
As I stated earlier, I am living a life; no, the Steps of Hope “team’, is living a life “on the edge of unbelievable” I end with this: I pray that if we can be of any help to you or anyone you know please contact us. If God leads you to help us in any way please don’t miss the blessing God has for you. Amen and thank you again for your time and interest.
Thank you, God for answering prayers.
Thank you, Jenee’ for showing me a glimpse of God’s unfathomable love.