Shortly after her fourth child was diagnosed with
Down's syndrome, Florene Stewart Poyadue became involved with Parents
Helping Parents (PHP), a Santa Clara Valley based local support network
for parents of disabled children. Under her direction, Poyadue transformed PHP
from a small local support group to a prototype for parent resource networks.
Items in this collection document Poyadue's unwavering commitment to PHP,
and highlight how her vision and work impacted the lives of countless families
and child health resource providers. Under Poyadue's leadership, PHP became
a United Way agency in 1985, and was recognized by the U.S. Department of Health
and Human Services in 1990 as the model for parent-to-parent resource centers
across the nation.
Florene Stewart Poyadue was born in 1934, one of 12 children who were raised
in a three bedroom house in Lovejoy, Illinois. Immediately following high school,
she earned a nursing degree from St. Mary's Infirmary School of Nursing in St.
Louis, Missouri. Around the same time she married Octave Poyadue and started a
family. For nearly twenty years Poyadue worked as a nurse in several different
cities, moving as Octave's military career necessitated. The family finally
settled in the Bay Area after Octave retired from the military. In 1975, Poyadue
earned a Bachelor of Vocational Education degree from San Jose State University.
9 record cartons, 2 boxes, 2 flat boxes
19.5 linear feet
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