April 29, 2019

Lincoln Learning Solutions to Support Children’s Programming at The Tull Family Theater

Cultural access for children—including children with autism and special needs—is at the heart of a Lincoln Learning Solutions Foundation grant to The Tull Family Theater.

The $15,000 programming grant is earmarked for children who face challenges in accessing cinematic events that are seemingly accessible to everyone, says George Pacinda, vice president of philanthropy for Beaver County-based Lincoln Learning Solutions.

“For children living in suburban underserved areas, transportation as well as the economic means to pay for tickets can present an obstacle to access,” explains Carolina Thor, director of The Tull Family Theater. “Because conversations swirl around current films, these events include youth into discussions about relevant topics.”

Additional issues of accessibility to cinema face children with autism and special needs. “After The Tull Family Theater pioneered sensory friendly screenings in the region northwest of Pittsburgh, staff members learned of the challenges for families and organizations in finding a cinematic experience that welcomes children and families impacted by special needs,” Thor says. “Some drove at least an hour one-way to provide their children with an opportunity to participate because nothing similar was available closer to them.”

In discovering the gap in services to children lacking access because of their abilities or transportation and economic misfortunes, Lincoln Learning Solutions decided to support this programming.

“Supporting the Tull Family Theater’s children’s programming, especially their low-sensory screenings, directly aligns with Lincoln Learning Solutions’ vision to maximize student potential,” Pacinda said. “All students, regardless of finances or neurological differences, need these types of cultural experiences to enhance their social skills and become active participants in their community.”

“It’s an honor to be recognized for the impact the Theater has on youth in Beaver and surrounding counties,” Thor says. “As a nonprofit, film-driven organization, we exist to strengthen educational, cultural and entertainment options beyond the city.”

Lincoln Learning Solutions support will make it possible to offer regular outreach and sensory friendly options through the upcoming months of family-friendly films and beyond.

The grant is the second partnership between Lincoln Learning Solutions and The Tull Family Theater since the theater opened in February 2017.

Lincoln Learning Solutions is a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to collaborating with educators and maximizing their talents to facilitate student success in and beyond the classroom. Based in Rochester, Pennsylvania, Lincoln Learning Solutions is the developer of Lincoln Empowered™, a digitally based curriculum that delivers proven, standards-based, engaging instruction in online and blended learning environments. Lincoln Empowered™ offers a dynamic array of courses in language arts, mathematics, science, social studies, physical education, and the creative and performing arts. Lincoln Learning Solutions currently serves more than 200 schools in 14 states, and upward of 22,000 students.         

The Tull Family Theatera 501(c) (3) Pennsylvania nonprofit, is a film-based arts organization created to strengthen cultural, educational and entertainment experiences in the region northwest of Pittsburgh. Supported by diverse revenue streams from private, public, corporate and foundation funding, the theater counts among its donors Allegheny Regional Asset District, Huntington Bank, Esmark and the Bouchard Family, more than 700 individuals and its patrons. Their support sustains and expands programming at this independent cinema in Sewickley offering two screens and an event/performance space. TheTullFamilyTheater.org

Contact: Karen Ferrick-Roman, Karen@thetullfamilytheater.org, cell 412.671.1456

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