8,025 children and 7,043 families served since 7/1/12!

Success Stories
Ricardo's Story
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Ricardo came to American Way Head Start during the 2008-2009 school year. Ricardo is a 5 year old little boy who loves to play with blocks and build towers. When he first came to Head Start, he did not talk very much, and struggled to communicate with his teachers and his peers.

Ricardo's teachers noticed that his voice was often raspy. Oftentimes his voice was hoarse, and his voice sounded different from the other children. In August 2009, Ricardo and his classmates participated in the annual speech and hearing screenings at American Way Head Start. Ricardo's teacher collaborated with University of Memphis speech therapists and determined something was not right. The results of Ricardo's speech and language screening showed signs of a condition called vocal abuse. There might be possible long term effects if left untreated. Ricardo's mother was given the results of the speech screening and he was immediately referred to an Ear Nose & Throat specialist. As any parent would be, Ricardo's mother was very concerned. She revealed to Ricardo's teacher, Ms. Gina, that due to the language barrier, she didn't understand the reason for the proposed surgery or what the surgery consisted of.

After finding a translator, Ricardo's mom understood the surgery and was glad to know that the problem had been found early and was treatable. Ricardo had surgery and his normal voice has returned. He has since graduated from American Way and is doing very well in first grade!

Featured Story
Cynthia was in Porter-Leath's Employment Training for Teens about ten years ago. Now, she operates her own day home founded on the skills she learned at Porter-Leath.
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