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Free training for parents of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Due to a generous $20,000 donation from Royal Ball Run, Augustana College's Center for Speech, Language, and Hearing is able to offer a free parent training program that provides classroom and home-based instruction to improve communication with their children. Because of the funding from Royal Ball, the center can offer interested families full scholarships for the second year in a row.

More Than Words was designed specifically for parents of children ages 5 and under on the autism spectrum. By addressing the unique needs of these children, the program provides parents with the tools, strategies and support they need to help their children reach their full communication potential. More Than Words empowers parents to help their child reach three goals: improved social skills and language understanding, and the ability to engage in back-and-forth interactions.

Faculty at the Center for Speech, Language, and Hearing will offer this eight-week program beginning in November. It includes eight two-hour group sessions and two videotaped home sessions, in which parents are provided specific, individualized feedback regarding their communicative interactions with their child.

Weekly sessions will be held at the Center for Speech, Language, and Hearing (851 34th Street, Rock Island) from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Nov. 16, 23 and 30; Jan. 11, 18 and 25; and Feb. 1 and 15. Augustana students will provide complimentary childcare on site. To participate in the program, contact Dr. Allison Haskill at 309-794-7388 or the program coordinator, Karen Sheraden, at 309-794-7350.

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