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Sisu looking for Spark Award nominees
The new logo and brand for Sisu, formerly Challenged Child and Friends.

Sisu, Integrated Early Learning in Gainesville is looking for candidates for its inaugural Spark Award to celebrate a community member who has shown “grit, perseverance, hardiness and resilience” in overcoming a difficult challenge.

“Do you know someone who has grit and an amazing inner determination? Have you witnessed a child overcome cancer treatment? Do you know someone who completed a college degree in their later years?” the organization asks in a press release this week announcing the award.

Sisu, formerly known as Challenged Child and Friends, provides a learning environment for special-needs children six weeks of age to 6 years old.

The organization rebranded last year, adopting the Finnish word ‘sisu’ to capture its mission of providing children with disabilities with state-of-the-art educational, therapeutic, nursing and family support services.

Officials describe ‘sisu’ as “going beyond one’s mental or physical capacity.”

Sisu is looking for nominees for the Spark Award, and more information can be found at

“This is a great way for our community to celebrate the spirit that helped to start (this school),” Jenny Floyd, board chair at Sisu, said in a press release. “As an organization we have ‘sisu’ and want to acknowledge that spirit in other community members.”

Sisu will also be featured at a “Business Before Hours” breakfast with the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce on Sept. 28 where more information on the award can be found. Visit for more info.

Sisu, Integrated Learning Spark Award nominees

How to apply: Visit

More info: Call or email Lindsay Addison, 770-535-8372,