For those of you who are interested in helping children with communication impairments, or specifically in our work in Bosnia, I would love to give you more information on the importance of this project.
Often in developing nations, children who have severe communication delays, are nonverbal, or who have a diagnosis such as Autism may not ever have the chance to receive the help they need. In Bosnia, it is typical that children will not receive speech therapy “until they learn to talk”. We know that without help, these children may never learn to talk, will never have a chance to go to school with their peers, and many eventually end up institutionalized, or worse.
SPG: CSI is committed to “teaching the teachers”, so that children in Bosnia can be served by trained professionals able to handle even the most extreme cases. Working with the University of Tuzla, SPG:CSI will open a practical training center in Northern Bosnia and co-host a 10 day seminar detailing evidence-based treatment techniques.
The University of Tuzla has already secured the location for the center, (As Professor Amela said, “I can see the castle it will be”), has committed the financial resources to keep the training center open for at least one year after we leave, and has partnered with parent organizations to identify children from the community. But we need your help to get the ball rolling.
SPG:CSI is responsible for bringing EVERY item needed for training, including all seminar materials and classroom items (yes, it will all be transported in suitcases), as well as organizing the team of U.S. professionals who will go to Bosnia for 10 days to provide the hands-on training. There are no paid employees, only specialized volunteers giving of their talents and time.
Here is our goal:
We need to raise $45,000 in order to keep our part of the commitment to provide the intense 10-day training to over 100 professionals, students and parents. Without SPG: CSI and your support, we cannot make the training center in Northern Bosnia happen. We invite you to attend the Bowling for Bosnia event on Sunday, March 7, 2010 where there will be 128 bowlers organized into 32 bowling teams. Here is what you can do:
1)Use your leadership skills and become a team leader! Get three of your friends together (raising a total of $1200 for four bowlers) and create your own team name. Be ready on March 7th for prizes, food and disco bowling! Event details can be found at http://www.spgcsi.org (click on “Become Involved”).
2) You can join another team in need (I need 3 people on my team! and I know other people need to find people for their teams as well), which means you are responsible for raising only $300. There is no comparison for the way a person feels when they know they are giving back to their global family.
3) If you are not in California, but would like to participate, we are in the process of creating “virtual” bowling teams (East coast, West coast, Midwest, Southern and International teams) with each virtual bowler willing to raise $300. There are volunteers standing by (high school students from the Fremont School of the Deaf) waiting to bowl in your name!!!
4) You can donate to the bowling team of your choice, or to SPG: CSI general fund. See our website on how to donate.
5) If you prefer to donate items rather than money, visit our website at http://www.spgcsi.org to view a list of materials needed for the Bosnia 2010 project.
Email or call Anna Taggart (925) 945-1474 x 126 to join a bowling team today. All the materials will be sent to you to assist you in your fund raising efforts. Teams must be confirmed by Feb 1st.
Thank you for your commitment to helping children with communication impairments around the world. Even one person makes a huge difference!!