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Family Trainees in LEND Barriers, Strategies and Successes. Fran D. Goldfarb USC UCEDD, CA Terri Abrams, Rochester Center, NY Anne Bradford Harris, Waisman Center, WI Ruth Roberts, Boling Center, TN. Fran Goldfarb, USC, CA, Chair Becky Adelmann, OHSU Darla Cohen, IN Sheryl Feuer, OH

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family trainees in lend barriers strategies and successes

Family Trainees in LENDBarriers, Strategies and Successes

Fran D. Goldfarb USC UCEDD, CA

Terri Abrams, Rochester Center, NY

Anne Bradford Harris, Waisman Center, WI

Ruth Roberts, Boling Center, TN

lend family discipline workgroup
Fran Goldfarb, USC, CA, Chair

Becky Adelmann, OHSU

Darla Cohen, IN

Sheryl Feuer, OH

Audrey Koertvelyessy, HRSA

Paula Lalinde,FL

Barbara Levitz, Westchester, NY

Jan Moss, OK

Elaine Ogburn, VA

Crystal Pariseau, AUCD

Madhavi Reddy, HRSA

Ruth Roberts, TN

Laurel Ryan, TN

Mark Smith, NE

Denise Sofka, HRSA

Barbara Wagner, WI

Mark Wolraich, OK

Jackie Yingling, Rochester, NY

LEND Family Discipline Workgroup


  • Introduction
  • Common Thread for Success: A LEND Family Trainee’s Perspective on a Clinical Mentorship
  • Family Trainees in LEND Overview
  • Panel Comments
    • Fran Goldfarb
    • Anne Bradford Harris
    • Ruth Roberts
  • LEND from the Trainees Perspective
    • Teri Abrams
common thread for success
Common Thread for Success:

A LEND Family

Trainee’s Perspective

on a Clinical Mentorship

Terri Abrams, LEND Family Trainee

Jackie Yingling, LEND Family Discipline Coordinator

Liz Baltus-Hebert, Occupational Therapy Discipline Coordinator

SCDD LEND, Rochester, NY

typical mentoring experience
Typical Mentoring Experience

Trainee in a professional discipline is linked with a family to shadow over a period of time, with the intent of identifying strengths, and to gain an increased understanding and appreciation of how families cope, access supports, and share resources

what happens when a family trainee is looking for a different kind of experience
What happens when a Family Trainee is looking for a different kind of experience?

Family Trainee and Family Discipline Coordinator design a new kind of mentoring experience utilizing the same objectives, format, and resulting formal class presentation

the process
The Process

Family Trainee linked with a professional discipline coordinator from the SCDD/LEND program

  • Family Trainee researched different professional disciplines and chose Occupational Therapy as a discipline she would like to know more about
  • Occupational Therapy Discipline Coordinator is open to the experience
from the perspective of the clinical supervisor
From the perspective of the clinical supervisor
  • Why OT???
  • Designed an ITP to meet Terri’s interests, skills and needs
  • No specific skills to teach or knowledge to transfer as with an OT trainee
I offered opportunities so that her experiences would be as diverse as possible
  • Widened Terri’s perspective on what constitutes a family: foster family, inner city family, single parent
  • Their needs were as diverse as the families themselves
what did i give to the experience
What did I give to the experience?
  • Thoughts about what might be most beneficial for Terri to experience
  • Examination of my schedule, caseload to identify opportunities for those experiences
  • Notify Terri of the opportunities, allow her to choose which she would like to observe
  • Ask families’ permission
what did i gain from the experience
What did I gain from the experience?
  • Observations from the perspective of a parent of a child with special needs
  • A second set of eyes and ears and hands
  • A sounding board for problem solving
  • Affirmation that my intervention was worthwhile
early intervention
Early Intervention
  • The system through which children from Birth to age 3 with developmental disabilities receive supports and services.
  • Established by the IDEA.
  • In NY funded and administered through the county health department.
occupational therapy
Occupational Therapy
  • Occupational therapy is the art and science of directing an individual's participation in selected tasks to restore, reinforce, and enhance performance; facilitate learning of those skills and functions essential for adaptation and productivity; diminish or correct pathology; and promote and maintain health.
  • Its fundamental concern is the development and maintenance of the capacity throughout the life span to perform with satisfaction to self and others those tasks and roles essential to productive living and to the mastery of self and the environment.
  • Since the primary focus of occupational therapy is the development of adaptive skills and performance capacity, its concern is with factors that promote, influence, or enhance performance as well as those that serve as barriers or impediments to the individuals ability to function.
occupational therapy1
Occupational Therapy
  • Occupational therapy provides service to those individuals whose abilities to cope with tasks of living are threatened or impaired by developmental deficits, the aging process, poverty and cultural differences, physical injury or illness, or psychological and social disability.
  • Occupational therapy serves a diverse population in a variety of settings such as hospitals and clinics, rehabilitation facilities, long-term care facilities, extended care facilities, sheltered workshops, schools and camps, private homes, and community agencies. Occupational therapists both receive from and make referrals to appropriate health, educational, or medical specialists. Delivery of occupational therapy services involves several levels of personnel including the certified therapist, the certified occupational therapy assistant, and aides.
  • Definition from:
“We need to support each child and family where they are…use our knowledge and resources to support them and their priorities.”

Liz Baltus Hebert

joys and frustrations

Different strengths and hopes

Fun to watch the children learn and grow.

The system

When kids lose because people can’t get what they need

When personal values conflict with a family’s.

Joys and Frustrations
Disability(Family) + Support =

Increased Resilience

disability family
  • Each family and individual is unique.
  • Each has gifts and needs of their own.
  • Culture, SES, etc. all play a role.
  • Disability is a variable and even varying factor.
  • Must be individualized.
  • Contributes: skills, information, strategies, or help.
  • Often must be interdisciplinary.
  • Must be respectful.
appropriate support is like new sneakers
Appropriate support is like new sneakers:

“Now I can run faster and jump higher!”

increased resilience
Increased Resilience
  • Improved situation.
  • New skills or strategies.
  • A sense of being understood or validated.
  • Additional resources.
  • An enhanced sense of security or confidence.
“Families are sometimes overwhelmed but they can do so many things—incredible things!”


"The world breaks everyone and afterward many are stronger at the broken places."

--  Ernest Hemingway

family trainees in lend
Family Trainees in LEND
  • N=28 programs
    • Yes- 18 (64%)
    • No- 8 (29%)
    • Uncertain- 2 (7%)
  • Number of Years
    • 1-2 years – 9 (50%)
    • 3-4 years – 6 (33%)
    • Over 4years – 3 (range from 5-11 years) (17%)
  • Number of Family Trainees per year
    • 1 trainee = 7
    • 1-2 trainees =3
    • 2–3 trainees = 3
barriers to establishing
Barriers to Establishing
  • None/Very Few = 7
  • Funding
  • Enrollment in University
  • Minimum Educational Requirements
  • Curriculum
  • Supervision
  • Class Schedule
  • Recruitment Materials
strategies for establishing
Strategies for Establishing
  • Develop program and budget funds
  • Program out of a hospital – not subject to University requirements
  • Funding from same stipend pool as other disciplines
  • Trainees in other disciplines who are also parents
  • Clear trainee qualifications

and requirements

strategies for establishing1
Strategies for Establishing
  • Trainee Recruitment
    • Work with advocacy groups to publicize program
    • Cast a wide net
    • Have former trainees help
    • Look for trainees already involved in the field
    • Recruit year round
  • Allow two year fellowships
  • Collaboration with Parent-to-Parent and local Children's Services Council
strategies for establishment
Strategies for Establishment

Flexibility on Everyone’s Part

barriers for maintaining
Barriers for Maintaining
  • No/Very Few – 7
  • Family Crises
  • Trainee Recruitment
  • Balancing LEND and Family (and Work)
  • English as a second language
  • Academic Support
  • Dropping Out
strategies for maintaining
Strategies for Maintaining
  • Application included questions regarding barriers to participation and need for accommodation
  • Support/Partnering from other fellows
  • Allow two year fellowships
  • LEND activities that focus on leadership and advocacy
  • Support from Employer
  • Accommodations on

assignments and

due dates

strategies for establishment1
Strategies for Establishment

Flexibility on Everyone’s Part

  • Trainees have taken positions with other family support agencies
  • Identified by People Magazine as a Local Hero
  • Became Parent Faculty
  • Increased networking

with other national

disability leaders

and professionals


Graduated just like everyone else


WI MCH LEND, Waisman Center, UW-Madison

LEND Co-Director – Anne Bradford Harris

UCEDD Director- Daniel BierFamily Faculty – Barbara Wagner

Family Trainees since 2005/06

(3 years)

UT Boling Center for Developmental Disabilities
  • Family Faculty:
    • UCEDD/LEND Director

Fred Palmer

    • Training Director –

Ruth Roberts

    • Family Faculty –

Laurel Ryan






UCEDD at Childrens Hospital Los Angeles

Training Director: Patrice Yasuda

LEND Director: Marion Taylor Baer

Family Faculty: Fran Goldfarb

Family Trainees since 1995/96 (12 years)


Strong Center for Developmental Disabilities

University of RochesterGolisano Children's Hospital at Strong

Training/LEND Director: Stephen Sulkes

Family Faculty: Jackie Yingling

Family Trainees since 2006/07 (2 years)