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Vicky Stewart's HEIDE LOVES TO CHEER Helps Children Understand Disabilities

Related: Vicky Stewart, Heide Loves to Cheer, Xulon Press, non-fiction

Within the pages of Vicky Stewart's new book, Heide Loves to Cheer ($17.99, paperback, 978-1-62509-113-0; $ 8.99, e-book, 978-1-62509-114-7) readers will get to know Heide, a fun-loving 28-year-old woman who sees herself as a child. It is the story of how the neighborhood children learn to accept Heide for who she is and realize how much she adds to their lives with her positive personality. They embrace her into their activities, but more importantly, into their hearts. The children and everyone else involved see how they can make a difference by looking past people's disabilities to the good they can contribute.

"My hope is that by learning how a person with disabilities feels and thinks, it will bring an awareness to the readers that will encourage them to look for those opportunities to make a difference by including these special individuals in their lives," states the author. "There are limited resources on this topic, one that most people don't want to address. Most mentally challenged individuals cannot speak for themselves, but their feelings are real. They deserve a chance to develop relationships at their level in the communities they live in."

Stewart worked with the Special Olympics for many years, a cause rooted in her heart as the mother of a child with mental and developmental disabilities. She has also worked for an extended amount of time in the education system through Exceptional Student Education, a bureau that administers programs and services for students with special needs. With this book she hopes to reach children who, when very young tend not to notice the differences of disabled children, but then become afraid and start to exclude them as they get older. She wants to show that instead of feeling uncomfortable, if they take the time to get to know children with disabilities, then they will see how they can give and receive kindness.

Xulon Press, a division of Salem Communications, is the world's largest Christian self-publisher, with more than 8,000 titles published to date. Retailers may order Heide Loves to Cheer through Ingram Book Company and/or Spring Arbor Book Distributors. The book is available online through xulonpress.com/bookstore, amazon.com, and barnesandnoble.com.

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