Hi, everyone! My name is Katie Caspero and I am a pediatric occupational therapist that supports conducting needs assessments for non-profit organizations. Throughout this past spring, I was honored to be able to support Neighborhood North by spending time learning about the space, meeting the kids, and working alongside the wonderful staff. I was able to hear the stories of how much this community meant to everyone and I saw how tight-knit and supportive everyone was to one another. I loved being able to walk the kids from Soma to Neighborhood North and hear the beeps and see the waves of familiar faces recognizing one another.
During my time, I talked with parents, community members, teachers, educational administrators, staff at Neighborhood North, and the kids themselves. I learned so much about what their daily lives looked like and I was able to complete a broad picture of strengths and barriers based on those conversations. I used the analogy of a river to demonstrate what obstacles (or rocks) may be in their way and what supports (or driftwood) help their days (or river) flow more smoothly. This is called the Kawa River Model and here is one example of what part of those conversations showed us. If you would like to review the entire presentation you can find that here.
Here are some of the recommendations that came from this assessment:
1. Offer parent training related to specific curriculums being used in school
for math and reading
2. Create a resource binder of activities so that any staff (volunteer, staff, leadership) could fill in and support activities
3. Offer training for both parents and staff on the development and age-appropriate activities that support social-emotional and educational learning.
If you have any questions about this assessment or what information we found feel free to reach out to me at email@example.com or Christine Kroger at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It was so great working with such a committed and engaged community and I feel confident that Neighborhood North will continue to be a vital, invaluable community space and resource for the Beaver Falls area.
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