LoloWich in Branford helping families with special needs one ice cream sandwich at a time


BRANFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — For some, ice cream is one of life’s guilty pleasures. And with a little creativity, it can even help kids with special needs.

The local organization LoloWich was created to help families with children with special needs better afford the high cost of critical equipment and medicine.

“It was a thought from the beginning of how to honor her courage,” Doug Rice of Branford told News 8. He created the charity in honor of his 9-year-old granddaughter, Loelle ‘Lolo’ Shepler, who was born with a rare condition called CHARGE Syndrome.

Back in March, Lolo’s family launched the ice cream sandwich named for her to help other families with children with special needs buy things like sensory tools, toys, and adaptive equipment that insurance doesn’t always cover.

Rice was a man with a plan.

He called on Royal Ice Cream of Manchester, and with their help, the ‘LoloWich’ is now sold to restaurants and bars across Connecticut. Along with his two daughters, Rice created a marketing strategy. From there, he says, the restaurants and bars took off with it.

“We’re so proud of them. And what we’ve been able to do is help a lot of young children,” Rice explained.

All proceeds from the sale of Lolowich go to a scholarship program. Anyone can nominate a friend, family member, or even a neighbor they think can benefit from something special.

Crowley added you don’t have to be in a certain financial status to receive assistance. “It doesn’t matter; we just want to help children.”

Since March, they’ve helped five families. They’ve sold a lot of ice cream sandwiches to comes up with $13,000 in profits.

“I take no expense for my time and travel. I don’t even pay for the gas. Everything is forwarded to an account to be there for kids. So, it’s 100% non-profit in the truest sense,” Rice said.

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