LEND program family centered practice highlighted at annual picnic

The Maine Leadership Education for children and families with Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (LEND) program recently held its annual Family Picnic.

The picnic supports a community of children and families participating in events and programs such as the Family-Led Program in which LEND Trainees are paired with a family to learn the joys and challenges of life with a neurodevelopmental disability.

A strong philosophy of the LEND program is family centered practice and parent practitioner partnerships.

This year the picnic drew record numbers including 17 parents, 15 children, nine interprofessional trainees and five faculty and staff members. Fun, food and family time were shared through this important event.

Participating faculty included Eileen Ricci, PT, D.P.T., M.S., PCS, associate clinical professor in the Department of Physical Therapy and Maine LEND program director; Kathryn Loukas, O.T.D., M.S., OTR/L, FAOTA, clinical professor in the Occupational Therapy program and LEND training director; and Valerie Jones, LMSW, family interprofessional team coordinator.

In November, the Maine LEND program will showcase its strong family-based philosophy and programs at the Association of University Centers on Disability annual conference in Washington, D.C.

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