Project Help

_____

Susan Waldrop, Director
206 N. Baird Lane
P.O. Box 413
Middle Tennessee State University
Murfreesboro, TN 37132
http://www.mtsu.edu/projecthelp

Project HELP is a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide early intervention services for "high risk" children or children with developmental delays, empower parents through education and support services, and prepare future teachers to work effectively with children who have "special needs."

Services to Children
Children are educationally assessed and an Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) is developed for each child. Those who are ready for group activities are served in a classroom setting four half-days per week. Activities are planned to help each child achieve the goals and objectives of the IFSP. Additionally, children have the opportunity to interact with others in group activities and cooperative play.

Younger children with developmental delays are served at home or sometimes at their daycare setting. Project HELP staff visit the child once each week. During this time, staff join with parents to implement the goals and objectives of the IFSP. In the familiar setting of home, children are relaxed and parents learn ways to incorporate learning activities into the daily routine.

Related services are provided for children with special needs. Activities developed by physical therapists, speech and language therapists, occupational therapists, vision specialists, or professionals from other service areas are used daily as part of a child's Individualized Family Service Plan.

Parent Training and Support
Parents are encouraged to participate in classroom or home activities. In this way, they expand their knowledge of ways to care for and teach their children. Parents also have the opportunity to be with other parents and to support each other.

University Student Training
Special education and early childhood education students at Middle Tennessee State University receive professional training in Project HELP classrooms. Under supervision of full-time staff, they work on daily activities. In this way, children receive extra help, and students get practical experience in a real-world situation.