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Beyond Words: Empowering Regina Clark to Communicate and Connect

Beyond Words: Empowering Regina Clark to Communicate and Connect

Categories: Blog, Staff

AHRC staff member poses with Regina ClarkIn May 2023, Regina Clark moved into the Helen Kaplan Intermediate Care Facility (ICF), a residential home for people who require a high level of supports. At times, supports, such as day habilitation services, are provided in the home.

Gloria Reyes, an AHRC Nassau Day Services Supervisor, welcomed Regina into the group and began developing a plan that would support her to reach her life goals. Gloria has been with AHRC for 18 years and is trained in everything from CPR to diabetes management.

Initially, Gloria noticed Regina had a hard time communicating her wants and needs, and often resorted to signing or gesturing to express herself. Gloria gave her the option to write things down. She provided Regina with a pen and clipboard and encouraged her to share what she could – starting with half a word.

With time and encouragement, Regina is now communicating with full words and short sentences.

“I like her to practice writing. With her communication board, she can talk to me and her other staff. That way she won’t lose her writing skills,” said Gloria.

This small change allowed Regina to become more expressive and empowered her to communicate with the people who support her. The next goal is for Regina to become comfortable sharing (through writing) in group settings, so she can express herself more and strengthen bonds with her peers.