Easter Seals’ P.L.A.Y. Project and Carson’s story

I was recently in Ann Arbor, Michigan with my colleague Julie Dorcey from Easter Seals Michigan. We were there to meet with Richard Solomon, M.D. to prepare for an upcoming presentation. Easter Seals staff and Dr. Solomon will be giving the presentation on the P.L.A.Y. Project (Play and Language for Autistic Youngsters) at a session on July 12 at the Autism Society of America’s (ASA) National Conference in Phoenix, Arizona.

The P.L.A.Y. Project is an autism intervention for young children. Dr. Solomon developed this parent-coaching model, designed to be carried out in a family’s home, based on the developmental, individualized, relationship-oriented (DIR) approach of Stanley Greenspan, M.D. Easter Seals provides this intervention in 19 locations across 12 states, including five sites in Michigan.

We got around to talking about some of the children participating in the P.L.A.Y. Project in Michigan — and that’s how I learned about Carson’s story.

Here’s what Carson’s mother says about the P.L.A.Y. Project, and how it has positively affected her child and family:

    “Trying to get into Carson’s world was impossible….

    We worked very hard to provide security and a comfort zone for Carson, and we especially wanted him to express his needs and wants to us.

    We continued to work with Carson, and hoped and prayed so much for the little things we often take for granted with babies and toddlers. Little things (or so we thought) like affection, silliness, acknowledgement, laughter, etc.

    Absolutely nothing we tried would work.

    Then we discovered Dr. Solomon, Easter Seals and the P.L.A.Y. Project.

    It’s because of the P.L.A.Y. Project that we now have a son who is so affectionate and engageable, among other things. I can’t tell you how many times a day — without prompting — Carson says to me, “Mommy, I need you,” or “Mommy, help me,” or “Mommy, tickle me,” or “Mommy, hug me.” It brings tears to my eyes just typing these phrases.

    Carson is truly a happy little boy who has made such tremendous progress with the P.L.A.Y. Project. My husband Rob and I will forever be grateful to Dr. Solomon and his P.L.A.Y. Project and Easter Seals Michigan.

    Each day brings us so many heartwarming surprises.”

It’s great to hear stories from people who have benefited from Easter Seals’ services! Julie and I will be back in July to blog about our presentation at the ASA’s National Conference.


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