My life changed forever when I became a mom. My boys became my universe; my sun and my moon. If you know me or my story, you know that both of my boys are neuro-diverse and were diagnosed in their early years. I’m not going to lie; those days were rough. I felt completely alone, overwhelmed and scared. I was fearful for their future and what life would bring. How would they manage life’s ups and downs? How would people treat them? Would they make friends? Graduate high school? Go to college? Drive a car? Would they be afforded the same opportunities as anyone else? Would they be able to support themselves and live independently? What would happen to them when I am no longer on this earth? Would they be happy?
So many questions…and no answers!
Fast forward almost a quarter of a century later (that sounds like a long time, right?)
There is no better time than COVID for parents to take the lead in guiding their child’s growth. I’ve always said that parents are the best suited to make the biggest difference in their child’s life.
Pre-COVID, a student of mine asked “Why do you like working with parents on-line or remotely?” My answer was “YES!”. Here are a few of my reasons why:
- Rewarding work – I get to help families who live in remote areas with limited supports and services
- Flexibility – scheduling is a breeze
- Time saving and cost effective – families save time and money NOT traveling to appointments
- Effective – RDI empowers and educates parents to know how to make the biggest difference in their children’s lives. Parents become empowered and the primary agents of change for their children
- Collaboration – RDI parents communicate their needs and their child’s needs in order that I can create customized goals that will best support their family life, cultures and beliefs.
What does virtual work look like?
- First of all, I highly recommend that parents interview a few Autism professionals before they begin to ensure a “good fit” for their family. I know firsthand how important that is. Trust me when I tell you – your motivation to do the work will be short lived if you don’t “click” with your consultant.
- I offer free virtual chats with parents interested in learning more about my services so that they get a feel for meeting online from the start.
- Reports and questionnaires are sent by parents and reviewed by me to glean a better understanding of your child and family system.
- Parents are given access to the RDI Learning Community. More information about the system can be found here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWk8hTEe8vE&feature=emb_logo This is a robust online learning system that includes e-learning modules, community discussions, webinars, parent video examples, RDI curriculum, research and more.
- Parents receive education during our meetings or through assignments related to their unique family strengths/challenges, desires and needs.
- Parents typically meet with me every 2 weeks online. Sessions can be recorded for later viewing or if both parents cannot attend at the same time.
- In between meetings, parents send 1 – 2 videos of them with their child. This provides the insight needed to continue to customize their program and provide manageable steps moving forward.
- Goals are monitored and updated as required. New goals are created as families are ready. Families will receive a combination of parent goals and childhood goals.
- Parents and children’s quality of life improves
- I work myself out of a job by transferring all my knowledge to parents.
For more clarity, here is a video discussing the benefits of working virtually with clients. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LYvRAzqAYps&feature=youtu.be
If you are still wondering what types of results you can expect from RDI – for parents and children – here is a list of a few.