Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! If you look in any of our classrooms, you will see every shade of green that you can imagine. Wendy Sadlier, our head “chef,” is offering Reuben sandwiches in the cafeteria and Irish music is playing in many classrooms. Yes, it is a fun day for both students and staff! However, it’s a day rooted in a tradition that is the basis for our mission. Why is that? Well, it all started with the shamrock…

We all know that the shamrock is the familiar emblem of Irish culture. Often, I have been asked, “Do you have a shamrock for your emblem because the Barber Family is Irish?” While we do come from an Irish heritage, the shamrock truly has a meaning that extends beyond just our lineage. I recall sitting with Dr. Barber as she explained her concept of the shamrock to artist Frank Fecko. Each of the three leaves has significance: Faith, inspired Hope, and enduring Love. And the stem? It is the community of supporters, our children and adults, families, staff, and friends. With this in mind, Frank designed our shamrock, an emblem we have used every day since!

Today, the shamrock endures as our promise to future generations that the Barber National Institute will continue our commitment to serving children and adults with disabilities and their families. It’s comforting to think that we will continue to see this “lucky” green symbol for decades to come! As Dr. Gertrude Barber stated: “All things are possible if you set a goal, persevere, and put wings on our dreams.”

Ryan’s first St. Patrick’s Day!

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