Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish. John Quincy Adams, 6th U.S. President

What is magic to a child?

A child knows that if you pick up a crayon and rub it against a surface, it draws. If you hold a cup of water and turn it upside down, the water spills out. There are things in this life that even a very young child comprehends fully.

What about those things that can't be seen or touched, yet they still seem like magic? If you look to the sky after a rain, a rainbow stretches across high above. If you place a seashell to your ear, the sounds of the seashore seem to gently swish out, caressing your ears. The world can seem like a perpetually magical place to children as they grow and experience it for themselves.

What is magic to a grown-up? We know why water sloshes out of the cup when it's turned over and what makes a rainbow after the rain, yet we sometimes forget about the whimsy of being young and why those things are so fascinating. Many times to a grown-up, the most magical things are those that just can't be explained the love we feel as parents, the delight we feel in hearing a child's first word, or perhaps the reward of our own patience and perseverance as we nurture a child's development. To think that as adults, our influences can cultivate both kinds of magic within a child, that which they can comprehend and that which they cannot!

By lending your financial support to Russell Child Development Center, you can influence that special magic that shapes the world of a child; the kind that lends to the flight of their imaginations and the kind that happens within them. By helping ensure funds are available for us to employ highly qualified staff, you will make sure the parents of young children receive the in-home, personal support needed to provide for their children's optimum development.

Your commitment will make certain that adequate resources are available for the provision of specialized instruction, equipment and guidance. You will support nurses, social workers, teachers and therapists in completing assessments, developing effective interventions and measuring outcomes. The list goes on.

There are varying sponsorship levels available for our annual fundraising event, the Fantasy Tree Festival, making it possible for everyone to be involved. Committee volunteers already are working hard to plan a magical evening to benefit RCDC's tiny-k Early Intervention Program.

Your participation in the prize drawings and live and silent auctions will help us generate the dollars needed to fill our funding gap for this essential program for infants and toddlers with developmental delays and disabilities in southwest Kansas.

The 26th Annual Fantasy Tree Festival will be held Nov. 17 at the Garden City Clarion Inn and Conference Center. Please mark your calendars and plan to join us in making the events complete with your gift of sponsorship and attendance.

You can make a difference in the lives of babies and toddlers now and for generations to come. To pledge your sponsorship, call 275-0291.