“Every child deserves the opportunity to reach their full potentional” and the Rosalie Murrey Memorial Foundation is working to help provide these opportunities.

The Rosalie Murrey Memorial Foundation is a beacon of hope and compassion for families navigating the intricate journey of childhood disabilities. Rosalie’s parents took immense tragedy and grief and made it their mission to provide enriching and inclusive early childhood learning experiences in Spokane. With a steadfast commitment to fostering growth, empowerment, and belonging, this organization stands as a testament to the power of community-driven initiatives in shaping a brighter future for all children, regardless of their abilities.

On Sunday May 19th from 2-6pm, the Rosalie Murrey Memorial Foundation wants to invite everyone to join them for FREE rides and fun at the Looff Carrousell in Riverfront Park! This event is inclusive and open to everyone, with a special emphasis on welcoming children with disabilities and their families.

Event Details:

  • Designated quiet space for individuals seeking respite from the crowd.
  • From 2pm-3pm, Carrousel music will be significantly lowered, lights will be dimmed, and the number of riders per ride will be limited to ensure ample space.

• From 3pm-4pm, music will be lower than usual, lights will be on, and the number of riders per ride will continue to be restricted.

• From 4pm-6pm the Carrousel will operate as usual, with full-volume, lights on, and no rider restriction.

• Free snacks and bottled water.
• Coloring activity and temporary tattoo station

To learn more and pre-reigster, visit www.rosaliemurreymemorialfoundation.org

“During a study from 2009-2017, 1 in 6 children (17%) were diagnosed with a developmental disability as reported by parents”

Their mission is to provide enriching and inclusive early childhood learning experiences for children with disabilities.

“It costs an estimated $233,610 to raise a child to age 17, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Autism Speaks, an autism advocacy organization, estimates the cost to raise a child with autism or an intellectual disability is $1.4 to $2.4 million. The more severe the disability, the more expensive the lifetime cost.”

Rosalie was a bit under the weather the week of November 8, 2021. She had a little bit of a cough and a runny nose. We decided to keep her home from school and therapy because we wanted her to rest and we didn’t want to risk her exposing other children to her cold. Julie and Rosalie had a wonderful, low-key week at home; a rare experience given Rosalie’s busy appointment schedule. On Wednesday, November 10, Rosalie was starting to feel better, but still had a runny nose, so Julie kept her home for that day, and Julie and Doug decided that if Rosalie woke up in time to go to school on Thursday that she would return to school on Thursday, November 11. However, Rosalie did not wake up on Thursday, November 11. She died unexpectedly and without a known cause, in her sleep. Rosalie was just shy of three and a half years old when she died.

Their Goals:

The overarching goal is to create an inclusive and therapeutic full day

child care center, called Birdie Nest, for children aged 3-6 in Spokane.

Birdie’s Nest will give children with disabilities the opportunity to learn

alongside their typical peers while receiving their necessary therapies,

such as physical therapy, occupational therapy, and/or speech therapy,

while they attend childcare.

Birdie’s Nest will mitigate the stress that many families face, such as:

• A caregiver being forced to leave the workforce to oversee their

child’s care.

• The lack of full day child care options for children with disabilities

over the age of 3.

• Multiple therapy appointments during the work day or in the

evening that require families to sacrifice family time.

“In 40% of families with a child who has special health care needs, a member of the family stops working to become a full-time caregiver, according to a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

Scholarship Information

Windsong School is a magical place that Rosalie loved. She loved her teachers, loved to play in the sand, and definitely loved to play in the water. She came home from school with dirty clothes and a huge smile on her face. Windsong allowed Rosalie to experience the magic of childhood, while simultaneously helping her gain skills and confidence. 

The teachers and staff members were so welcoming and accepting of Rosalie and they saw what she could do as opposed to seeing what her disabilities were. Rosalie thrived in her short time at Windsong School and Julie and Doug are forever grateful for the impact that Windsong had not only on Rosalie, but also on their family. 

To honor Rosalie’s memory, Julie and Doug created an Early Childhood scholarship fund at Windsong School. The hope is that scholarship funds will allow other children to access the magic of Windsong that Rosalie loved so much. 

It’s evident that the impact from the Rosalie Murrey Memorial Foundation transcends mere education—it’s about empowerment, inclusion, and the unwavering belief in every child’s potential. Through their tireless efforts and unwavering dedication, they have not only enriched the lives of countless children with disabilities but have also ignited a flame of hope within the community. As we reflect on their mission, let us be reminded that true change begins with small acts of kindness and that by coming together as a community, we can create a world where every child, regardless of their abilities, can thrive and flourish.

Learn more about Rosalie’s life, legacy, and their mission by visiting their website at rosaliemurreymemorialfoundation.org

This post was created in partnership with Rosalie Murrey Memorial Foundation.