Meet the Staff
Donielle is the Co-Director of the D.R.E.A.M.S. Foundation of Acadiana along with her husband Brian Watkins. Donielle and Brian founded D.R.E.A.M.S. in 2008, because their son and other kids with special needs in the community wanted to participate in activities and sports. They never imagined that it would flourish into the successful foundation it is today. D.R.E.A.M.S. has brought together many families that identify with each other and has changed many lives for the better. “I am blessed that God chose us to lead this organization.” -Donielle
After the birth of their son Logan, who was born with Spina Bifida, Brian and Donielle’s lives were changed forever. They decided to create a nonprofit foundation designed to bring activities and sports programs to the Acadiana area for special needs individuals. After several years of introducing and running various programs, Brian decided to go back to school to become a special education teacher. He has now been teaching since 2010 and is currently teaching at St. Thomas More high school in the Options program. In 2014, he was awarded Teacher of the Year by the Louisiana Governor’s office for special needs. As well as teaching those with special needs in the classroom, he is also involved in the sports and activities throughout the organization! “Each child can learn; we just have to figure out how they learn.” -Brian
Community Relations Coordinator
Laynie found her passion in working with children with special needs during her sophomore year at Lafayette High School. While being a cheerleader and a member of the choir for all four of her high school years, she made time for a class helping students with special needs called Peer Support. After graduating in 2012, the Peer Support class influenced her to major in Early Childhood Education at The University of Louisiana. She cheered for three years as a Ragin’ Cajun Cheerleader, but chose to end her cheer journey to be more involved in her studies and with D.R.E.A.M.S. She will graduate in December of 2017 and continue her education to receive a certification in Special Ed, as well as work towards a Master’s Degree. Laynie is the head coach of the D.R.E.A.M.S. Cheer Warriors, teaches the D.R.E.A.M.S. CYT class, and handles various administrative/community-based duties for the organization. “These kids are no different than any of us. All they want is a chance to have the education and the life they deserve.” – Laynie
Sarah is a graduate of the Lafayette High school class of 2014. She is currently a Junior at The University of Louisiana majoring in Elementary Education. She has been a part of D.R.E.A.M.S. for a year, teaches the D.R.E.A.M.S. CYT class, and also works with one of our very own D.R.E.A.M.S. kids, Ali.