Imagine what it might be like to have all the words of language in your head but being unable to have them spoken with your voice. Imagine the stress, anxiety and irritation one must feel to not be able to express yourself like your other peers
The HEAL Foundation (Healing Every Autistic Life) wants to give kids with autism the power of communication by distributing iPads in ESE classrooms throughout Northeast Florida. Leslie Weed, founder of The HEAL Foundation, noted the benefits of the technology when she bought an iPad for her daughter Lanier, who is nonverbal and profoundly affected by autism.
“With the iPad, Lanier began to communicate with her family, siblings and teachers through a technique called ‘facilitated communication,’” Wees said. “She began to speak to us through the iPad – her teachers were astonished at how much she knew and her level of intelligence.”
By raising funds through HEAL, the goal is to place an iPad in every special needs classroom in six school districts in Northeast Florida. The initiative is called “iHEAL - iPads Helping Enrich Autistic Lives.” HEAL has partnered with Apple to launch the initiative. Together, we are introducing new learning opportunities to communicate with those who have learning disabilities and are non-verbal.
HEAL has partnered with Master Facilitator Morgan Tyner of ACCEPTS, and over the past two years, dozens of non-verbal school-aged students have started communicating with their families via iPads for the first time in their lives.
To date, HEAL has distributed over 100 iPads to teachers throughout six school districts. In November they will deliver another 50 iPads. Since 2004, HEAL has given nearly $2 million to the local autism community. In 2016, HEAL awarded $200,000 for specialized camps, the arts, after school programs, classroom enhancements, iPads and Autism Service Dogs. For more information, visit www.healautismnow.org.
Provided by HEAL