January 2010 WATCH News
The Wake Area 
Telehealth Collaborative Helping Children with Special Needs
The TelAbility and NCREN Partnership
ncren logoExciting news...our collaboration with NCREN has allowed us to record the past two WATCH videoconference sessions. 
You can view the November session on Post Partum Depression and the December session on Sensory Processing Disorder by clicking here:
Once at this site go to the drop down box that says "Choose recorded session below".  The November and December meetings are stored there.  (It also lists the October session, but that session has  been removed.)  Click the session you would like to view and it will start streaming it for you.  One note...you will have to fast forward through about 15 mn of the November Post Partum Session as session had a delayed start.   Please also keep in mind that these are rough cut recordings--they are not edited or polished, but they do allow you to get good content and information.  You can also download the powerpoint presentation notes for each session by going to the TelAbility website and search for the session names. 
Let Juliellen know if you have questions or trouble viewing them, but also let us know if you try it out and what you thought.  This is an exciting new development for our project and we are grateful to NCREN for their help!
 WATCH Offers a Three Part Videoconference Series on Autism
nathan finishAutism Case Study Discussion
DATE CHANGE:  Friday, January 29th from 12:30-2:30
This session, facilitated by Mary Lou Gelblum and Mary Henson, will highlight the challenges and successes of early intervention strategies when working with children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder.  Mary Lou and Mary will be using case studies to highlight their experiences.  This session is meant to be a conversation with all participants exchanging ideas and experiences. 
To register, contact Juliellen at jsimpvos@med.unc.edu.
Eating for Autism Book Review Videoconference
Friday, February 12th from 12:30-2:30
This session will review the book Eating for Autism, by  The conversation will provide a brief overview of the book, along with thoughts about its use for children on the autism spectrum.  The discussion will be led by Joan Comrie and Melissa Rightor, CCS-SLPs, from Carolina Pediatric Dysphagia, Nora Roehm, M.ED, from Capitol City Speech Therapy, Crystal Kelley-Robinson, Ed.M, and Marie Christine Kemp, CIMI, OTR/L from Dynamic Therapy for Kids.  You do not need to have read this book to attend the session.  To register or be a host site location, please email Juliellen at jsimpvos@med.unc.edu. To see a written review of the book, read on.
"Autistic Like" DVD Videoconference Preview and Discussion
Friday, March 12th from 12:30-2:30

This session will present the documentary, "Autistic Like: Graham's Story" followed by a discussion of the issues around children who have many characteristics of Autism but do not meet the criteria for a diagnosis.  This DVD highlights the diagnosis of 17 month old Graham Linthorst from the perspective of the family.  The story tells of the parents search for the correct therapists, doctors, and diagnosis to describe their son.  The purpose of the discussion is not to support or challenge the story, but to discuss its message and implications for therapists work with families and treatment options for children displaying similar behaviors.   The session will be led by Nora Roehm, M.Ed, Developmental Therapist with Capitol City Speech Therapy.  To register for this session or to be a host site contact Juliellen at jsimpvos@med.unc.edu.

Eating for Autism Book Review
by Melissa A. Rightor, M.A., CCC-SLP with Carolina Pediatric Dysphagia
nathan finishEating for Autism by Elizabeth Strickland, MS, RD, LD outlines a 10-step treatment plan to improve nutrition for children with autism spectrum disorders, Asperger's Syndrome, and/or ADHD.  The premise of this book is that nutritional deficiencies contribute to atypical brain functioning; therefore, if nutrition is made a larger focus with children with autism, improvements will be seen across the presentation of the disorder.  This book is an easy ready for families and professionals working with children with autism.  Strickland suggests that due to the neurological differences of children with autism, diet is essential to improve brain functioning by ensuring that all nutrients are in balance.  As a result of many children with autism limiting their diets, their brains may not have access to all the vitamins and nutrients needed for peak functioning.  The book provides a detailed description of how to implement each of the 10 steps along with 75 gluten-free, casein-free recipes for families that decide to place their children on some of these special diets.  Strickland emphasizes throughout the book how essential it is for families to have a strong, knowledgeable team (including a dietitian, speech/language pathologist, pediatrician, occupational therapist, behavioral specialist, etc.) involved with the child to ensure that the program is safe and effective.  Strickland also notes that there is limited research available on the efficacy of these diets.  She suggests implementing these special diets only until you determine if your child is a "positive responder."  A positive responder will showed a reduction or elimination of undesired behaviors (i.e. stimming, tantrums) and may show an increase in desired behaviors (i.e. speech/language, eye contact).  A major limitation of these controversial diets is that many children with autism are so rigid about their eating that it may be difficult to implement special diets as the diets may put kids at risk for malnutrition if they result in an even more limited repertoire of foods.  If you are interested in trying one of the special diets, be sure to stay objective about the results by completing pre-diet and post-diet rating scales, and always remember that a team approach is essential to the success of your child and the program. 
To read more about the 10 Step Plan click here and click the Eating for Autism Book Review on the TelAbility homepage.
"Keeping Up With Changing Times" - a 3 part discussion series sponsored by the Wake County LICC

     Join the Wake County LICC:

* explore and identify issues impacting our Early 
      Intervention System
    * share successful strategies
    * network with others

to build a stronger system for children and families
Tuesday, February 9th; Project Enlightenment 12-2:30 pm
Business and Finance for Non-profit and for Profit Providers

Target Audience: Practice Managers, Bookkeepers, Billing Specialists; Case Managers; Business Owners and Executive Directors
·Discuss changes your organization has made to business and finance practices.
·Share best business practices; Generate new practical business solutions to proactively combat impending changes.
·Network with business managers and other stakeholders in Early Intervention.
Tuesday March 9th; Project Enlightenment 12-2:30 pm
Communicating With and Supporting Your Staff

Target Audience: Practice Managers, Supervisors, Business Owners and Executive Directors
· Discuss the role supervisors play in supporting their staff including:
- how to effectively educate staff on system issues and their impact.
- how to help staff share accurate information with families about system change.
- how to measure and respond to staff concerns and questions about system change.
- how to show staff support and appreciation (outside of financial reward)?
Tuesday, April 13th, White Plains Children's Center 12-2:30 pm
Providing Quality Services to Children and Families

Target Audience: Parents, Practice Managers, Educators, Service Coordinators, Social Workers, Service Providers
·Discuss the strategies in developing the best relationship between professionals  and families.
·Share resources that professionals are using that best support families.
·List questions and concerns often posed by parents in regards to their child's
 -Identify ways to link necessary resources to meet the needs of families.
This is not a workshop!
The intent behind these sessions is to talk about best practices and
share tangible tools to improve service delivery to children and families.
Come ask the questions you need answers to, and as a group, we will try to answer them.
Bring your lunch. Light snacks and beverages will be provided.
RSVP to: info@wakelicc.org identifying which sessions you plan to attend.
The Erikson Institute comes to Wake County

nathan finishThe Wake County Young Children's Mental Health Collaborative presents:

The Erikson Series: Social-Emotional Development and Early Intervention Education for Wake County Early Intervention Professionals
With financial support from Wake County Smart Start, TelAbility and the Erikson Institute in Chicago are partnering to offer Wake County providers the opportunity to participate in four Erikson Institute Continuing Education courses via videoconference.

The sessions focus on a range of early intervention and special education topics and are open to early intervention and mental health professionals , parents, educators, social workers, and therapists. Each session will offer participants 5 hours of Continuing Education credit. Each session will cost $25.00 per person. Participants must prepay and register for each course two weeks prior to the date of the session. Session descriptions and the registration form are listed below. Registration fees are non-refundable.

Erikson Institute Professional Development Course Offerings

Title:  Unmet Needs and Challenging Behaviors (limit 30 people)
Date: Thursday,February 11th, 2010
Time: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Location: Via videoconference with The Erikson Institute
Description: As children develop, many factors influence their ability to communicate their needs in a way that others understand. As a result, those needs can go unmet. Unmet needs in young children are often represented by challenging behaviors that prevent the child from experiencing success in relationships with others. In this workshop we will examine the needs of the young child and the risk factors that can affect healthy development. We will focus on how challenging behaviors displayed by the child can negatively influence relationships and interactions with others. Finally, we will understand the types of interactions that are most effective in responding to the child's needs and to challenging behaviors.

Credit available: Approved by the Illinois Early Intervention Training Program: 3 contact hours in the area of Atypical Development and 2 contact hours in the area of Intervention; 5 SWCEUs; 5 CPDUs; 0.5 CEUs. Approved for 5 hours of continuing education in Marriage and Family Therapy

Title:  Assessment Enhancement: Observing and Interpreting Neurobehavioral Cues (limit 30 people)
Date: Thursday,
February, 25th, 2010
Time: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Location: Via Videoconference with The Erikson Institute
Description: The key to a good assessment is observing, interpreting, and reporting observational data. Professionals working with very young children are constantly observing behavior.
Learning how to interpret that behavior from a neuroscience perspective is the focus of this workshop. Participants will be taught to observe and read cues that are related to a child's unique neurological functioning. By enhancing assessment in this way, child development professionals will be able to more fully understand a child's unique developmental profile and in turn be able to individualize subsequent intervention.

Credit available: Approved by the Illinois Early Intervention Training Program: 5 contact hours in the area of Assessment; 5 SWCEUs; 0.5 CEUs

Title:  Inside the Life of a Teenaged Parent (limit 15 people)
Date: Saturday, March 20, 2010
Time: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Location: Via videoconference with The Erikson Institute
Description: This workshop will provide participants with a basic understanding of the unique developmental needs of the adolescent parent and his/her child. Participants will look inside the realities of life for a pregnant/parenting teenager and will discuss strategies designed to maximize positive relationships between teen parents and those who spend time with them in an educational or support service environment. Small group work and role playing will be used in this workshop.

Credit available: Approved by the Illinois Early Intervention Training Program: 5 contact hours in the area of Working with Families; 5 SWCEUs; 0.5 CEUs. Approved for 5 hours of continuing education in Marriage and Family Therapy

Title:  Social Emotional Development Implications for School Readiness (limit 30 people)
Date: Friday, April 16th, 2010
Time: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Location: Via videoconference with The Erikson Institute
Description: This workshop is designed for professionals in the fields of early childhood promotion, prevention, and intervention. Those who work with and directly and indirectly serve infants, toddlers, and preschool children will benefit. We will explore various definitions of school readiness and the relationship between a child's social-emotional development and school achievement.
Group discussions will address the influential role of child care on a child's social-emotional development, competency, and confidence.

Credit available: Approved by the Illinois Early Intervention Training Program: 3 contact hours in the area of Typical Development (Partial credit); 5 SWCEUs; 5 CPDUs; 0.5 CEUs

We are excited about this partnership with Erikson and thank Wake County Smart Start for helping to cover the full cost of the sessions. Contact Juliellen Simpson-jsimpvos@med.unc.edu for a registration brochure or with any questions.
2nd Annual Run, Walk & Roll Updates
nathan finishThe 2nd Annual Run, Walk & Roll is scheduled for Saturday, May 1st 2010 from 9:00 am -noon at Crowder District Park  in Apex, NC. 
Last year's event helped raise $25,000 which was used to provide clinical and consultation services to children and families and professional development opportunities to the service providers caring for children with special needs.   This year our goal is to raise $50,000 to support and sustain this cause! 
The Run, Walk and Roll is a 5k run and one mile walk or roll to benefit children with special needs, their families, and the providers who care for them.  A resource fair, co-sponsored by the Wake County LICC, will be held in conjunction with the event.
How you can help...
Be an Event Sponsor!
Last year we had over 25 businesses sponsor this event.  We have already secured two gold level sponsors for our event, but we need many,many more!  The Run, Walk, & Roll offers your organization the chance to sponsor the event at a Gold, Silver or Bronze level.  Each level provides businesses various marketing and communications opportunities, along with a free table at the Resource Fair.  To obtain a Sponsorship form contact Juliellen at jsimpvos@med.unc.edu.
Host a Table at the Resource Fair!
Last year over 50 businesses, agencies, and support groups hosted Resource Fair tables.  They had a great time talking with families, providing activities for children, and meeting other service providers.  Make sure you join us this year! 
Tables for For Profit businesses cost $100.00. Tables for Non-profit agencies cost $25.00.  Applications for Resource Fair tables are available now and are due back by April 1st.  To request a Resource Fair application contact Juliellen at jsimpvos@med.unc.edu
Register to Participate in the Event!
Last year over 400 people ran, walked, or rolled!  We will see you on the trail this year??  Online registration will be available soon, but in the meantime, start building your teams!  Individual registration is $25.00/person.  Teams of 4 or more are only $15.00/person.  The largest team and more spirited teams will both win awards at the event.
Get Your Team to Raise Money!
Team donations brought in the bulk of the money raised last year.  This year when registering your team you will also have the chance to create your own personalized donation page.  The team that raises the most money for the Run, Walk & Roll will win a week's vacation at a wheel chair accessible NC beach house There will also be prizes for the second and third place teams.
Volunteer to help with Event Day Logistics!
Last year over 100 volunteers helped pull off this amazing day!  We will need lots of help in coordinating the event logistics.  If you are interested in helping with event set up and other details, contact Juliellen at jsimpvos@med.unc.edu.
BEST Buddiez beginning again at Learning Together
nathan finishLearning Together's Child Mental Health Initiative is pleased to announce  a new session of BEST Buddiez to on February 2nd.
BEST Buddiez is a therapeutic model that was designed for young children (2-5 year olds)to help them develop important social skills.  BEST Buddiez offers a group module that emphasizes social relationships and prepares two to five year olds for transition into a childcare center or school. CMHI therapists conduct BEST Buddiez utilizing play therapy techniques to teach prevention themes of Boundaries, Empathy, Self Esteem, and Thinking. These research based prevention themes meet the needs of young children who are at risk for future behavioral problems in the school system. A collaborative parent workshop is simultaneously held with children's groups, providing psycho-educational material and peer support.
For more information contact Mallory Vinson at mallory@learningtogether.org
Announcing:  The Pediatric Gait-Course
nathan finishThe Pediatric Gait-Course:
Multiple Intervention Strategies
will be offered on March 26th-27th at the University Club in Raleigh.    The course is sponsored by Pediatric Therapy Associates.  You can register for the course by clicking this link.   
Community Partnerships Welcomes New Staff
Community Partnership, Inc. welcomes three new staff members to the program.  Kat King is the new Inclusion Consultant with the HOST program (returning to CPI after a 10 year break), Karen Beavers is working as an early intervention specialist while two staff are on maternity leave, and Susan Stafford has joined the team as an Early Intervention Specialist. 
Local Events
Family Support Network's
Give & Take Series
Family Support Network's "Give & Take" series will be starting up on February 2nd and will run 6 weeks.  The series will be facilitated by Dr. Hal Shigley. This series is for parents struggling with raising a special child.  It provides help in time of crisis, provides on-going support, shares positive coping strategies, sharing information, ideas, and resources, and provides an opportunity to relieve loneliness and form new friendships.

Meetings will every Tuesday from 7 - 8:30 p.m.  Free on-site childcare (provided by Tammy Lynn Respite Care) will be offered.  We have a limited number of spaces for both the class and childcare so please register early (The last time we offered this class it filled up within a week).

For more information please call Jodi (662-4600 ext.257) or e-mail her at (jodi@familysupportonline.org)

nathan finishNC-APVI Parent Support Meeting
This meeting,will be offered on Saturday, January 30th from 10am-12pm at the Governor Morehead Preschool.  Discuss topics will include discipline issues, family acceptance, public awareness, coping strategies and other topics of interest. 
Childcare will be provided but you must RSVP to reserve your spots.  Please RSVP to jennifer Strickland at JCar382600@aol.com. 919.266.6119.
 Giving to TelAbility
In December, TelAbility received an anonymous donation to support the program's ongoing services.  The donation was in honor of The WATCH Collaborative and the Members of the Wake County LICC for all they have done to support children with special needs, their families, and the providers who care for them. 
We are grateful for the donation!   
You can recognize a child you serve or a professional you admire by making a donation to TelAbility/WATCH on their behalf. 
Send your gift, along with a few words about the child or professional to :
1101 Weaver Dairy Road, Suite 202
Chapel Hill , NC  27514
Checks can be made out to the UNC Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.  Include "TelAbility" on the memo line. 
Thank you!