Virginia Beach Parks and Rec. employee helps kids, people with disabilities understand COVID-19

Posted at 1:38 PM, Jun 01, 2020

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Understanding what is happening in the world is difficult for anyone, but for kids and people with disabilities, it can be especially tough.

Jordan Vaughan is an employee with the Virginia Beach Parks and Recreation Department and works with people who have disabilities.

She said she wanted to help those people comprehend the COVID-19 pandemic better.

“When everything happened and everything shut down, they were the first people I thought of, and I wanted to provide a tool so they were able to cope with this huge change,” said Vaughan.

Vaughan said it was also tough trying to explain to her 6-year-old daughter why she wasn’t going to school anymore after the pandemic hit.

She said her daughter loves school and especially loves seeing her friends and teacher.

She said she created what is called a "social story," which is a digital slideshow to help explain COVID-19 to people who may have trouble understanding social situations. It can also help little kids as well.

Related: Strategies to help kids with autism cope with sudden change brought on by coronavirus

She created the slideshow using the website in hopes of helping people with autism.

“It’s a massive change, which can be really debilitating for some people on the spectrum, so the social story is able to put everything into perspective,” said Vaughan.

She said the social story is getting attention from local school districts. She said several other agencies across the country are also sharing it after it was included in the city newsletter.

Click here to see her social story.

Click here for suggestions from the CDC on how to talk to kids about COVID-19.

Click here for full coronavirus coverage.