Helping children in a time of need

My name is Ali Solberg.  I am a speech-language pathologist for Kent City Schools.   I first learned about Replay for Kids while attending a workshop.  They asked all the SLPs in the room to “adapt” a toy for a student by implementing a switch to activate the toy.  For someone who has never understood wiring, mechanics , etc. this task seemed extremely far-fetched.  However, with the wonderful guidance of Natalie and her colleagues from RePlay we were able to strip wires, solder, etc. to create something wonderful.

      With my new found excitement and the power of soldering for the first time,  I walked up to Natalie and asked if we could do a workshop with one of our vocational programs.  She was very friendly and more than willing to set this up for our students.  Unfortunately, this is the time when Covid-19 changed many aspects of life and we had to cancel the workshop.   During this time, my students were also left without the equipment and daily activities that brought each of them so much joy.

       Their teachers and I began to worry about this lack of stimulation.  We were unable to return to school to pick up equipment that was desperately needed by the families.  With limited or no other options, I turned to RePlay for Kids.  Yet again, without hesitation they were willing to help each and every one of our students in need.  Toys were selected, requests were made, and boxes delivered extremely fast.  I have had the joy of having video instruction with families filled with delight watching their children interact with these toys specially set up by RePlay for Kids.  I can’t tell you how much the students, parents, teachers, and I appreciate all that this organization has done.

      The students that we work with are such bright lights in this world.  Being able to bring joy and laughter to their day-to-day routine is an amazing experience and one we cherish so much as individuals who get to work with them!

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