The Organization

History of the organization…

After about 3 years in the behavioral health field working with children with Autism and a wide variety of special needs, Jill VanKuren grew very frustrated with the lack of resources and the inability to name even one place that was accepting of children with different ability levels and behavioral difficulties.  There was not a single place that a family could go in the Lehigh Valley to allow their kids to just be themselves and have fun without the judgmental looks and uncomfortable stares if/when behavioral issues arise. In a venting session with her best friend about the huge need for a place of acceptance, fun, and information, the vision for Live Learn & Play was born. {November 2009}

Jill formed an LLC and created the trade name/doing business as name, “Live Learn & Play”. Promotions officially started for the company in April 2010 at the Walk Now for Autism Speaks at Lehigh Parkway. After several trade shows, Jill connected with investors who were interested in the concept.  After working out the details for about a year and a half, in June 2012, the center officially opened with over 300 people at the grand opening. After only 6 weeks in operation, the center was closed due to unexpected and unrelated financial issues with the investors who were involved.  In that short 6 weeks, the center received quite a bit of attention and interest from our community along with over 25 testimonials from families about services and programs provided.

“When one door closes, another one opens”.  With all of the community love, encouragement, and support, it seemed most beneficial to the organization, the mission, and the community to re-form as a non-profit.

Live Learn & Play, Inc. was established in September 2012 as a non-profit organization.  The board of directors was formed in October 2012 and is made up of an amazing and diverse group dedicated to making this dream a reality for our local kids and families once again.

Live Learn & Play was officially approved as a 501(c)3 Tax-exempt, Non-Profit Organization in October 2013 (effective as of September 2012).

Mission Statement: Live Learn & Play is a Lehigh Valley-based non-profit organization dedicated to helping local families with Autism & special needs by promoting awareness & inclusion. Our goal is to create an inclusive family entertainment & resource center for families of all ability levels.