The FOP Family Fun Zone is the designated childcare space for attendees under the age of 18 at the 2023 Family Gathering. We're excited to announce that the Fun Zone will be split into two separate rooms for this year's event to provide a more private space for teens (ages 13-18) to hang out as well.
Our Fun Zone staff and volunteers provide a variety of activities to create a safe space for children with FOP and their siblings to connect, have fun and learn new skills while they attend the Family Gathering. From science experiments and a chance to meet FOP researchers to guided meditations and emotional regulation skill building, there's something for kids of all ages!
Meet the Fun Zone Staff
Alexis Gonzales holds a Master’s Degree in Recreational Therapy from Temple University. She is a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) and Child Life Specialist (CCLS). Alexis works at Weisman Children’s Rehabilitation Hospital where she enhances the abilities and independence of children through leisure and play to reduce the effects of illness and disability. She ensures children’s social, emotional, physical, and developmental needs are met though a variety of activities to achieve greater overall health and well-being.
As a sibling of child with FOP, Alexis has been involved with the IFOPA since 2018. She has acted as the leader of the Fun Zone during the 2018 and 2019 Family Gatherings by facilitating activities for children with FOP and their siblings for entertainment, team building, and to foster friendships. Alexis works closely with Hope Newport, IFOPA Family Services Manager to help provide resources and services for the FOP community.
Hello, my name is Aracelis Stevens, but most people call me Cely. I am a wife and a mother of four children, two living with special needs. I come from Puerto Rican descent and have been living in the United States since I was 18 years old.
For the past 9 years, I have been a bilingual instructional assistant in the Lindenwold District of South Jersey. This career has given me an opportunity to help those children in need by supporting their development of speaking, motor, reading, and comprehension skills. As a close family friend of the Gonzales family, I have had the opportunity to learn about FOP and watch a child with FOP thrive in the social setting of our campground where our families spend many weekends together.
I am honored to be able to volunteer my time by joining the Fun Zone team at the Family Gathering!