There are lots of challenges that come with raising children with development issues. One of those challenges shouldn’t be difficulty in obtaining information due to limited access here on Maui. To fight this, Imua Family Services started their Early Childhood Development Conference. Last year, the conference resulted in a large number of attendees and this year is expected to be the same.
“The first conference last year was enormously successful which is why we knew the need was there for Maui to receive advanced information for those who serve our children’s needs, said Imua Family Services executive director Dean Wong. “Last year we centered the conference around occupational therapy and this year we chose speech language pathology as our focus because we know from our own work the huge need for speech therapy today.”
The conference is open to the public. Attendees last year included people looking to get Continuing Education Units (CEUs), childcare and care-giving professionals looking to expand their knowledge and parents seeking to learn more about developmental issues facing their children.
“Dr. Christine Fiestas is coming to speak about bilingual issues with speech development this is very important today with our many local bilingual families and immigrant families whether it be Spanish/English or Tagalog/English,” said Wong. “Imagine if you have a speech delay and are being raised in a bilingual family? Often times too, immigrant or duo language families do not recognize developmental issues that might be affecting their children. The second or maybe even first major current issue surrounds feeding development and how that has an impact on speech disorders. This is what Jennifer Buck is speaking on.”
The conference will run for two days, Oct. 26 and 27. One of the main goals of the conference is to provide information at an affordable price because normally conferences like this take place on the Mainland, which means airfare, accommodations and the conference fee add up to a pretty hefty amount. The breakdown for the prices are as follows:
$125 individual (by Oct. 19, 2012)
$155 (from Oct. 20, 2012)
$60 Student, Teacher, DOE, UHMC Early Childhood Education Program Students, Neighbor Island
Anyone looking for more information or to register online, click here.
-Oliver de Silva (@odesilva)
Photo Courtesy of Imua Family Services