Board Profile

Rainbow Valley Resource Network

A Conversation with
Shelley Coolidge


Why did you decide to join the board of Rainbow Valley Resource Network (RVRN)?
As a life-long Christian Scientist, as well as a parent of a young adult with special needs, I understand how important an organization like RVRN is to Christian Science families. RVRN didn’t exist when we were raising our son, and we would have greatly benefited from being able to connect with other Christian Science parents and caregivers, both practically and prayerfully. And the program offerings RVRN continues to roll out – from job training to adaptive summer camp experiences – are truly enriching the lives of those with special needs. It’s my privilege to serve this organization.

Why does the world need RVRN?
RVRN operates all of its programs and activities from the basis that everyone, regardless of seeming labels, is a cherished and unlimited spiritual idea, “rising higher and higher from a boundless basis” (Science and Health 258:13-15). What a standard for the world!

What’s your vision for what RVRN could be or do?
There are so many families who don’t even know about this cherished organization – RVRN has really just scratched the surface in terms of reaching those it could serve – so spread the word! I also appreciate RVRN’s far-reaching goal of facilitating solutions for adults with special needs. For example, I know that finding proper care or housing in a Christian Science environment is a huge concern for C.S. parents who have adult children with special needs. The currently available options are very limited compared with the needs.

Tell us about your family and where you live
My husband, Scott, and I live in southern California in the foothills of Azusa (east of Pasadena). We have three young-adult children, including our son, Daniel, who has special needs. When Daniel was in elementary and middle school, he had the opportunity to attend summer camp at two different Christian Science camps over six summers. We will always be grateful to both of these camps for welcoming Daniel with open arms, and for giving him the extra support he needed in order to be at camp. My husband and I saw first -hand how much Daniel grew from being a camper – and we grew too! I love that RVRN now operates a Youth Specialty Program that offers school-aged children the opportunity to participate in adapted activities at Christian Science summer camp.

How has Daniel been blessed by RVRN?
Daniel has recently started participating in RVRN’s monthly virtual “Loved One Gatherings.” He really looks forward to this. (His previous school schedule did not allow him to participate.) Daniel just completed a “day program” through our local school district, where he was seeing other students regularly. Since then, these online gatherings have given him a new opportunity for a “friend group.” Daniel also loved RVRN’s online “Christmas Gathering” in December – he stayed online for the entire two-hours! The RVRN staff and the CS camp counselors who emcee these online events are all fantastic! A huge “thank you” to everyone.

Rainbow Valley Resource Network
Rainbow Valley Resource Network
Rainbow Valley Resource Network