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This fundraiser ended on 01/01/13

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A fundraiser to purchase i-pads for special needs children. You could help give a child a voice, that they did not have before.

   In a world where we communicate everyday whether it be, talking to a neighbor, or to the cashier at you local store, or talking to a our loved ones about what to have for dinner that evening. It's all about communication.  Now try to imagine living in a world where your voice is not heard. You try to tell somebody something as simple as, your thirsty & not being understood. How frustrating it can be when your not feeling well but your unable to tell your doctor where it hurts. My son lives this way everyday & so do many children in my community. It can be frustrating as a parent having your child misunderstood & people getting the wrong impression because they don't understand what your child is trying to tell them.
   For example, my son was on a flight to go visit his dad in Texas for the summer. I explained to the flight attendant that my son does understand what you say he just doesn't talk. Everything was going well as I escorted him on the plan put him in his seat & buckled him in. I got off the plane so they could board the other passengers. I was waiting for the plane to depart. As I sat there waiting I was called up to the counter & was told the flight attendant wanted to speak to me. As she approached me I could tell she had a look at her face that I am all to well accustomed to. She began to speak in a tone I have also come to know all to well. She wasn't so much angry as she was frustrated. She was telling me that she was leaned over the seat trying to speak to my son, explaining to him what he would have to do in case of an emergency. So I knew right off she was to close to his face. She continued to tell me that my son kept trying to put his hand up to her face she interpreted this as my 6 year old was trying to slap her. But I knew that was his way of telling her she was to close & to move back. He did this several times. Each time the lady pushed his hand away. Finally my son became so frustrated that he tried to use his foot to move her but did it a little to hard & ended up kicking her. So my child was kicked off the plane. I hold no grudge toward the flight attendant. She didn't understand him. Unfortunately I am used to things like this happening.
    It gets frustrating as a parent having to deal with things like this. I can only imagine how frustrating it is for Brandon & children like him. Being considered a bad child because you have a meltdown in the grocery store. People staring at you as if your parents don't know how to control your behavior. I have had many of these looks from total strangers. In a perfect world people would be more understanding, but the truth is we don't live in a perfect world.  So children like my son that don't have any visible signs of having any sort of special need are constantly misunderstood & labeled unfairly. Truth is unless you spend time around my son you couldn't tell there was anything wrong with him. He is a typical 6 year old little boy with the exception that he can't speak.
  I have done a great deal of research & have spoken to a lot of professionals on the matter of how the ipad technology has helped non-verbal children as well of those diagnosed with A.S.D. There has been a lot of positive feed back on how the Ipads help these children not only with communication but there social skills & learning as well. There is an interesting article in the Washington post On April 18th By Mari-Jane Williams "iPads especially helpful for special-needs students." It has several examples of how the ipads have helped in the classroom.

I also was lucky enough to save up enough to purchase an i pad recently for my son. I have seen the progress hes has made with it although it is new to him he is making progress with it every day.  My son's occupational therapist has even agreed that children like my son would benefit greatly from the ipad. He is not alone a lot of therapist, & teachers as well have said the same. I know my son has benefited from having 1.  The ipad device are very light weight compared to a traditional Augmentive communication which can weigh about 15 to 20 pounds that is a lot of weight for a 6 year old to carry around every where he goes.. I have also discovered the traditional augmentive communication devices are very limited as to what they can do compared to the ipads An ACD is basically used for speaking for the child no apps or much else for that matter. Unlike the ipad that does have similar speech software plus many more benefits. I send my sons to school with him & his teacher works with all the kids on it & it has made such a great impact I would love for them all to be able to have there own.
   Imagine you could help give a child a voice that they did not have before. I & the other parents would greatly appreciate it.

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