Where Children Find their Voices
Little Ryan was only three years old when he was diagnosed with childhood apraxia of speech (CAS), an uncommon motor planning disorder that makes it difficult for children to produce sounds and sequence sounds into words. CAS requires a lot of time and therapy to overcome, and it takes an equal measure of patience from speech pathologists and the kids themselves.
When the toddler first came to Santa Barbara RiteCare, a nonprofit center that provides speech and language services to young children, Ryan could only utter four sounds and less than 10 percent of his speech was intelligible. It took two years and three therapy sessions a week, but Ryan made a quantum leap in progress. By the time he graduated, about 75 percent of his speech was intelligible.
Overcoming speech disorders like CAS also requires early intervention, a RiteCare specialty. Ryan would often come to sessions with his twin brother Bryan, who was quickly diagnosed with a milder form of a speech disorder and enrolled in therapy as well.
During summers, both brothers attended Camp Chit Chat, a fun and socially interactive program to help preschool-age children with their communication skills. When they showed signs of reading difficulty, they were enrolled in RiteCare’s Brain Lab program, a literacy intervention program for children from second to sixth grade.
The twin brothers are two of the more than 150 success stories who receive Santa Barbara RiteCare’s speech and language services every year. The programs rely entirely on donations and are completely free to the children’s families.
“Their parents would not have been able to afford any sort of therapy outside of what we were able to give them,” says Julie DeAngelis, center director and speech-language pathologist.
Ryan and Bryan are 10 now, having aged out of all the Center’s programs, but they are forever changed by their experience.
“What’s neat is that communication is the most basic thing that everyone needs to be successful, and these children go through an invaluable life experience of overcoming adversity,” DeAngelis says. “It’s empowering for them to have that at a young age.”
Executive Vice President: Arthur Salazar
Help children find their voice. The California Scottish Rite Foundation is dedicated to support and assist children in California by providing childhood speech-language, literacy and education programs for a lifetime of improved communication and confidence.
Begin to Build a Relationship
We know you care about where your money goes and how it is used. Connect with this organization’s leadership in order to begin to build this important relationship. Your email will be sent directly to this organization’s director of development and/or Executive Director.
Santa Barbara RiteCare Language Center is an amazing organization that helps children with language and reading in fun and engaging ways, utilizing both gross and fine motor techniques. This success is attributed to their caring staff and unwavering community support. It’s crucial to sustain this center so that all youth, regardless of their financial situation, can access the strong educational fundamentals they need for a thriving future.
A Small Investment Makes a Big Impact in Giving a Child a Voice
RiteCare Childhood Language Center’s ongoing speech and language therapy programs, along with its summertime Camp Chit Chat, are all provided at no cost to the families. They rely entirely on donations and grants to offer these life-altering sessions to those who don’t have the means for private help. With only two Speech-Language Pathologists on staff, the ever-expanding waitlist means many youngsters aren’t getting their needs met at a critical time in their lives.
Just $60,000 would enable RiteCare to hire a third Speech-Language Pathologist, allowing the small organization to instill another 30 children with communications skills that increase learning and make a dramatic difference in their lives going forward.
“It’s our dream to be able to bring on another therapist and help more children,” says Summer Calvert, program director.
Sidney E. Frank Foundation
Santa Barbara Foundation
Roy and Ida Eagle Foundation
Mark & Amy Frank
Scottish Rite – Valley of
Hutton Parker Foundation
Santa Ynez Band of Mission Indians
Santa Barbara Lodge of Perfection
David Bradley & Chelsea
American Riviera Bank
King David’s Lodge
Carpinteria Masonic Association
Maurice & Mary Sourmany