Lockdown Is Forcing Special Needs Parents to Get Creative

With professional help, parents of kids with autism and developmental delays are embracing DIY therapies

Arionne Nettles
ZORA
Published in
5 min readApr 28, 2020

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A photo of a mom and her young child high fiving as the kid plays with blocks.
Photo: Weekend Images Inc./Getty Images

For Darlene Rodrigo, finding the right care for her daughter, Bella, has been a challenge. The sixth grader is nonverbal and has Down syndrome and autism. Despite these obstacles, her family’s…

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Arionne Nettles
ZORA
Writer for

Arionne Nettles is a lecturer at Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism, a Chicago-based journalist, and a special needs mama.