Our Story and The Reason Why We Do what We Do:
Founders, Ann and Andrew Sheperd, strives to make their nonprofit family oriented. The Board of Directors and volunteer committees have helped create a community wide initiative to redefine how adults living with a disability are seen and cared for in society. Ann and Andrew have three daughters and a son. Their son is 38 years old and has been diagnosed as having ADHD at 3 years old. He was diagnosed with having mental health problems (MH) followed by Intellectual Developmental Disabilities (IDDs) and in recent years bipolar schizophrenia type.
He graduated at the age of 22 from high school with his GED. At 24 he entered into the system with continuum care on the waiver. Since then their son had been displaced within 14 different agencies, all of which could not provide the supports he needed. There has been lots of set backs, heart breaks, hurt, anxiety, struggles, fear and loss of hope to say the least. A dream was born in their hearts in 2008 to create an integrated village on a working homestead farm where adults with IDDs are given affordable housing, resources, supports and training to help them transition from exiting high school and advance into adulthood, the community and the workforce.
The Sheperd’s Lodge, became a 501c(3) not for profit in 2009. A lot of time and energy have been put into this project, building relationships and collaborating their efforts to see this dream come to fruition. They have been a community partner to many other agencies in the area. They have been active within the church as chaperones and leaders onsite and on short term mission trips, they organized and took several short term international mission trips. Their family loves to travel the world and to learn about different people and cultures first hand. Ann was a Brownie girl scouts leader and Andy coached soccer at the YMCA, he coached and assisted coaching the girl’s tennis team at Union Academy Charter School. Ann is a Realtor and Broker in Charge of her firm. Andy has had 31+ years at his current employment with a major airline. In 2016 Ann started a parent and community support / training group that meet every month. In 2017, the first summer camp was held and also monthly social meetings for their members and community friends. In 2018 they initiated an integrated equine assisted learning program, taught by a certified EAL trainer who has 30+ years working with horses.
Their dream is coming alive...they would like to thank you for your support and encouragement.