The Final Countdown to Tuzla 2010

With only a few days to go before we kick off the 2010 Bosnia Autism Project, I wanted to give our supporters some very exciting updates!

The volunteer team arrives Saturday afternoon in Zagreb and then will travel by bus, finally arriving in Tuzla on Saturday night. SPG: CSI team 2010 has spent the last year preparing for the next two weeks. We have 11 professionals coming from all across the US and Australia ready to put in action all they have dreamed about until now. Even though they will arrive exhausted from the journey, I have no doubt the excitement of finally being able to meet the children and families will be energizing!

Regarding the seminar we are co-hosting with the University of Tuzla, which is called  “Autism: Our Reality”, we will be speaking on topics related to the treatment and diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) for the first 5 days. We were expecting to train 100 people each day, but yesterday I heard that we have more than 140 who would like to come on day one alone. Standing room only- I am so happy people are so interested! HOORAY!!!

While we have the seminar team speaking at the Hotel Tuzla, the Family Intervention team will be making home visits to families and children in the community. We are scheduled to work with 10 families in one week, with teams of professionals and University students seeing each family 3 times. The Family Intervention team has established goals individualized to each family, and at the end of their visits they will have provided each family with a home education, communication, and/ or behavior plan.

After we finish the first week of the theoretical training and home visits, we will begin practical training in the new Tuzla Kindergarten for children with ASD. We will have nine students in attendance from the local community, and we will provide intense training to 18 professionals and University students who will come from all parts of Bosnia. The long-term purpose of this classroom is for it to serve as a training center for other professionals in the future, and provide a place for University students studying speech-language pathology and special education to receive hands-on training prior to graduation.

Wonderful news for those of you who have been following our progress: The classroom is ready! The furniture has been assembled, the walls have fresh paint and the grass has been cut…it is just waiting for students to make it complete. Even the neighbors are now asking when the children will arrive!

We are looking forward to June 21st which is the first day of the seminar and home visits, and June 28th which is the first day of the classroom practical training.

Follow our blog to receive new updates and see pictures of SPG:CSI in action in 2010!

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