This May, The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) and the Child Mind Institute are joining forces to raise the profiles of their respective public service campaigns—Better Hearing and Speech Month in the case of ASHA and Child Mind Institute's Speak Up for Kids.
Each May, through its BHSM campaign,ASHA raises awareness about communication disorders and promotes treatment that can improve the lives of people who have them. This year, it will be partnered with the Child Mind Institute, which is dedicated to transforming mental health care for children everywhere, on its third annual Speak Up for Kids campaign. The initiative will raise awareness and discussion around "barriers to care"; its centerpiece will be a series of 16 online events that tackle the big issues facing families today.
Communication disorders and mental health problems can make life difficult for children and their families. Like the Child Mind Institute, ASHA wants to decrease the stigma that keeps families from seeking help, let parents know where to get help, and—in the case of communication disorders—encourage them to seek help from certified speech-language pathologists and audiologists.
"ASHA is thrilled to partner with the Child Mind Institute; the Speak Up for Kids campaign goals are closely aligned with our mission of advocating on behalf of people with communication and related disorders and promoting effective human communication," says ASHA 2013 ASHA President Patricia A. Prelock, PhD, CCC-SLP. "With May being Better Hearing and Speech Month, there is no better time to spread the word about how and where children experiencing speech, language, or hearing issues can find professional treatment."
According to Child Mind Institute President Harold S. Koplewicz, M.D., "Adding ASHA's voice and communications disorder expertise will help strengthen the call for getting kids the help they need." He notes, "In the wake of the Newtown shootings and an increased focus on making children's mental health services more accessible in so many ways, Speak Up for Kids can help increase awareness and correct the misinformation that causes so many kids to miss out on treatments that can change—or even save—their lives."
About the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
ASHA is the national professional, scientific, and credentialing association for more than 166,000 audiologists, speech-language pathologists, speech, language, and hearing scientists, audiology and speech-language pathology support personnel, and students. Audiologists specialize in preventing and assessing hearing and balance disorders as well as providing audiologic treatment, including hearing aids. Speech-language pathologists identify, assess, and treat speech and language problems, including swallowing disorders. www.asha.org.
About the Child Mind Institute
The Child Mind Institute is dedicated to transforming the mental health care for children everywhere. Founded by Harold S. Koplewicz, MD, and Brooke Garber Neidich, the Child Mind Institute is committed to finding more effective treatments for childhood psychiatric and learning disorders, building the science of healthy brain development, and empowering children and their families with the information they need to get help, hope, and answers. To learn more, visit childmind.org.