Parent Training Room at the…
University Hospital Speech and Hearing Center
"The Sertoma Club of North Augusta contributions at work!"
“I have a parent of one of my stuttering children who watches the educational videos on stuttering while I am working with her child in therapy. It is interesting that this child is also receiving some of the designated ‘stuttering scholarship’ money that has been annually donated by the North Augusta Sertoma Club. We are so fortunate to be affiliated with them.”
Photo: Therapist Mary Georgia Vickers teaching
language techniques in the Parent Training Room in
The following article was published in the SERTOMAN magazine…
Volume 73, Issue 5 – SPRING 2004
Clubs can do meaningful things through cooperative efforts with other clubs through Sertoma Community Service Matching Grants, which are administered by Sertoma International and funded by the Sertoma Foundation. Contributions to the Sertoma Foundation Annual Fund make this and other vital Sertoma programs a reality.
One project that makes a difference is the Parent Training Room at the University Hospital Speech and Hearing Center in Augusta, GA. The North Augusta Sertoma Club was instrumental in providing the Parent Training Room and was assisted by the Rivers Edge and CSRA Leadership Sertoma Clubs in applying for the matching grant.
The University Speech and Hearing Center, an Affiliate of the North Augusta Sertoma Club, provides group and individual services to adults and children struggling to speak, hear or swallow more effectively. The Parent Training Room, dedicated in February 2002, was the brainchild of Rosanne Grubbs, manager of the Center. She was concerned that insurance companies and Medicaid/Medicare were reducing coverage of speech and hearing services, and she also wanted more parent participation in the therapies of covered dependents.
At the same time, club members Herb Olson and Jim Fulghum approached Rosanne with the idea of obtaining a Sertoma Foundation funded grant from Sertoma International to finance a specific project with a well-defined need. The concept of a parent-training program evolved. The resulting Parent Training Room provides a comfortable setting in which parents can develop the skills to stimulate and enrich their child’s speech, language and hearing development. The training program uses videotape instruction, reading materials, take-home assignments and videotaped and live feedback of parent-child interactions. Parents involved can watch videos, peruse related materials or practice with a speech pathologist – all while their child is in therapy sessions.
One parent shares the sentiments of many, “Some of these materials have given me ideas about how to work with my child at home to enforce what his ‘teacher’ has been working on!"
The staff facilitates the process. At times, the child and therapist come in with the parents, and the therapist serves as a role model in helping the parents learn the best way to communicate with their child. The program has been used to help parents when their child was unable to receive services due to a lack of funding.
Indeed, one parent relates, “When our insurance changed and we no longer had any coverage, the staff gave us a lot of materials and ideas to help my husband and me work with Lance on our own.” We would meet periodically with the staff in the Sertoma Parent Training Room.”
Since 1992, the club has contributed $49,000 to the Center, including $10,000 last May. The club’s support has provided assistive listening devices for deaf and hard of hearing clients, and speech therapy for those without health care coverage. Additionally, the club established a special fund to supplement parents’ out-of pocket expenses for stuttering therapy, a service not usually covered by insurance.
One staff member attests: “I have a parent of one of my stuttering children who watches the educational videos on stuttering while I am working with her child in therapy. It is interesting that this child is also receiving some of the designated ‘stuttering scholarship’ money that has been annually donated by the North Augusta Sertoma Club. We are so fortunate to be affiliated with them.”
Rosanne sums up the benefits: “Without parent participation, the child is just getting it here twice a week and there’s no carry-over. If a parent is involved, the recovery and learning is so much better and faster. Prior parent training was in cramped little offices; now, thanks to Sertoma, it can be done separately, and parents can have quiet time and learn.”