ERC Frequently Asked Questions

ERC Frequently Asked Questions

How are the students served by Cunningham different from others their age?

Youth in Cunningham’s Residential Treatment Program at Cunningham attend Gerber School. These youth have been referred to Cunningham because they have experienced some type of trauma, if not multiple traumas, before coming here. This could include physical or sexual abuse and/or neglect. Grief, loss, and abandonment issues are also prevalent among these students.
 
Students who attend our Circle Academy Therapeutic Day School live in the community with their families. These students have unique behavioral and emotional challenges, many related to trauma, which have prevented them from being successful in a public school environment. 
 
In each school program, our therapeutic education model is designed to identify the individual needs and strengths of each student and to build on those strengths, both academically and behaviorally.
 
Why can’t Cunningham kids go to public schools?
Cunningham residential and day students have a wide range of disabilities – emotional and behavioral problems, special education needs, and learning challenges. These “invisible disabilities” impact their ability to function, learn, and develop healthy relationships. These students require special education in a therapeutic environment that public schools cannot offer.
 
Why is building a new school on the Cunningham campus a good investment?
Providing a state-of-the-art learning environment to educate our students will increase their chances to complete a high school education and allow them to become independent members of society. In turn, this helps all of us create a better society for the future and breaks the cycle of dependency created when people must rely on social programs for their support.
 
What can I do?
You can make a gift today.  Go to our Giving Page and make a one time gift or establish a recurring gift to the Education and Recreation Center Fund. Or contact Tim Manard, Development Officer, at 217-337-9071 or tmanard@cunninghamhome.org for more details.
 
How will my gift make a difference?
Your gift will open a world of unimagined possibilities for our students. Your gift will give our youth hope for a meaningful and productive life.  Your life will be forever transformed because you positively impacted the life of a child.