May is Better Hearing & Speech Month. Each year, this month provides an opportunity to raise awareness about communication disorders, and the life-changing therapy services that people can receive.
Easterseals Central Illinois pediatric speech therapists use a variety of techniques to teach essential skills needed to be confident and successful communicators. Speech-language treatment plans and goals are developed and implemented based on each child’s specific needs, and goals of the family. Our therapists are experts in creating an environment in which children feel successful, yet are challenged to develop their individual skills.
This BHSM month, we are highlighting our friend Ben. He has made incredible progress since starting at Easterseals in 2016 when he was 4-years-old. Now, as a fearless 7-year-old he has met many milestones and overcome adversity and challenges – always keep his sweet smile on his face.
His favorite things include eating chicken (of any kind), cheese sticks & yogurt. He loves riding his bike and playing basketball & baseball with his twin brother, Jake. His favorite song is Old Town Road!
From his NICU nurses and doctors in his earl years, to his therapists, teachers, friends, and of course, family, Ben has made an impact on the lives of many people. He was diagnosed with a severe speech delay due to health complications at birth, and had a tracheostomy tube until he was three. His family shares that his diagnosis made them feel overwhelmed and nervous, but also hopeful and determined to get him the services he needed. His mom shares that “he has personally taught me a new meaning to life, and to embrace every day with joy.”
Through his hard work and perseverance and Easterseals therapy services, Ben has celebrated many milestones like graduating from the ABA program and making significant strides with his speech and learning. In the past year, Ben has improved his speech in such big ways. He has gone from using his talking device somewhat regularly to hardly ever using it now. A year ago, it was harder for others to understand him at times, and now his speech has gotten so much better and he receives many compliments on how well he speaks.
This May, we are so happy to reflect on the milestones that the kiddos at Easterseals have met. Through his hard work and determination, Ben has made significant strides, while inspiring every person he meets. He shows no signs of stopping.