Ehlaam is an adventurous ball of energy who loves to spend time outdoors. She enjoys painting and drawing and loves watching Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. Things were different four years ago. We started noticing some of her developmental milestones were missing. Our pediatrician was quick in evaluating and at 18 months she referred us to the Early intervention. Ehlaam prominently had speech delay and social interaction issues. The Early intervention’s evaluation process was quick, and a team was assigned to implement their plan promptly. The team included a special instructor, speech and occupational therapist. The team helped us in understanding and managing Ehlaam’s behaviors, they also gave us the emotional support that we needed and most importantly prepared us to get an early diagnosis.
At three Ehlaam got a diagnosis of Autism spectrum disorder and she transitioned to the Early Intervention 3 to 5 program. She started Early Intervention preschool and was placed in a verbal behavior Autistic support class. Her class teacher for two years now Ms. Shannon Urich and her team are incredible. Ehlaam has shown tremendous progress in her speech and behaviors. The frequency of meltdowns has decreased. One of the biggest contributions of that Early Intervention team is them collaborating and coordinating with the in-home wrap around team and center-based therapists that has made Ehlaam’s progress by leaps and bounds, not only at school but also at home and in the community. We have a once in two monthly meeting where we all sit together and share information and discuss strategies to address challenging behaviors and set up goals.
One of the other contribution of Early Intervention which has been imperative to Ehlaam’s progress is giving us the emotional support and strength that as parents we needed to understand and accept the diagnosis and manage our lives after that and have also provided us amazing opportunities to be educated about Autism by providing us a scholarship to attend the National Autism conference that has changed us as parents. We are not only better informed but also trying to help others in their journey by getting involved in family engagement opportunities.
Early Intervention has been a blessing in our life. They have not only been the professionals that help us with our daughter but have been like a family providing us emotional support and strength to keep going. We are forever grateful to Early intervention and feel blessed to have them in our life.