Pointing Youth with Disabilities Towards a More Independent Future.

Objective: Project Genesis serves teens with disabilities in high school, teaching independent living skills, improving academics and building bonds of friendship with other typically-developing teens (who serve as Peer Mentors).
Hope for Miami serves children and youth of all abilities within its programs and services. 
Number of participants: 70 youth total in the two program locations

Program Locations: 
Miami Central High School (30 students with disabilities, 10 peer mentors)
Address: 1781 NW 95th Street. Miami, FL 33147
Lead Teacher: Michelle Laing
Special populations served: Students who are Deaf, students wits Autism and students with
learning challenges.

Southwest Miami High School (25 students with disabilities, 5 peer mentors)
Address: 8855 SW 50th Terrace. Miami, FL 33165
Lead Teacher: Rosa Duarte
Special populations served: Students with Down’s syndrome, students with Autism, and students who use wheelchairs.

Schedule: Tuesday and Wednesday afterschool during the school year, 6 weeks of full-day summer camp.

Evidence-based models used: Brigance Basic Skills, Learning A-Z (reading), Cooking to Learn

Program Activities: Independent living skills, career preparation, homework assistance, reading skills enhancement, social-emotional learning, computers, field trips during summer camp.

Program History: Hope for Miami began providing afterschool services in 2004 with funding from the Children’s Trust. During that initial year, 10 deaf middle school age youth were enrolled in the Hialeah site location because our Site Supervisor was certified to teach children with disabilities and had fluency in American Sign Language. 

As these children transitioned into high school, they needed a program better suited to their developmental needs, so Hope for Miami expanded our programs for students with varying exceptionalities (including deaf youth) at Barbara Goleman High School, which moved and expanded to serve 40 students in North Hialeah in 2012 serving multiple schools. 

Re-branded as Project Genesis in August 2015, the focus of the program is preparing students for their future through teaching independent living skills, preparing students for potential employment and helping students with their academics. Project Genesis hires experienced teachers and tutors from the Miami-Dade County Public school system who are certified to teach students with disabilities.

For a listing of resources for children and youth with disabilities, please click HERE

Disabilities Services - Meet Our Staff


Mayra Sanabria
Program Manager
Disabilities Services
mayra @ hopeformiami.org


Susy Piscoya
Program Coordinator
Disabilities Services
susy @ hopeformiami.org

Download a Student Application HERE


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