Volunteer Spotlight: Cameron Tease

Why does Cameron Tease volunteer at Cedarcrest Center for Children with Disabilities each week?

“I see it as part of a continuum,” said Cameron, who recently retired from management in manufacturing to work in the nonprofit sector.

The Keene, NH community strongly supported his son Sean after a car accident severely disabled the 17 year-old in 1989, he said. Sean spent five years in a facility two hours from his family after his accident. Finally, Cameron and Sean’s mother bought and renovated a house in Keene, negotiated waivers with Medicaid, and collaborated with community providers to bring him home.

Medicaid approved a budget for three caregiver shifts a day, and family members and volunteers from Sean’s high school, Keene State and the community took slots to stretch the funds. Many helped Sean socialize, taking him downtown, to coffee houses and theatres.

“They helped him be as independent as possible, and part of the community for twelve good years,” said Cameron.

Sean passed away in 2007, but Cameron didn’t forget what a difference people had made in his son’s life. “They were like family,” he said. Cameron began volunteering at Cedarcrest, where he had previously served on the Board of Trustees. He visits with two young residents weekly.

This year Cameron took a position as Director of Resource Development for Monadnock United Way. Along with some of Sean’s caregivers, he established The Sean Tease Scholarship at Monadnock Developmental Services to recognize the positive difference direct service providers make in the lives of people like his son.

“It is amazing to me the years after Sean's accident went so fast. When you are in survival mode you don’t think about it, but we managed because there was so much care and love around him. Sean was a great inspiration to everyone. His spirit and life live on.”