Welcome From: Kathrin Hšlzl Date: 9/30/99 Time: 3:12:55 AM Remote Name: 220.127.116.11 Comments Let me welcome you to this page. I'll try to answer as quickly as possible, however I still ask you to be patient if it takes a little longer. Kathrin Re: Welcome From: Moni Date: 10/6/99 Time: 2:26:23 AM Remote Name: 18.104.22.168 Comments Well, you really did a great job with this paper! Everybody gets an idea how successful this sommercamp was,how much fun the kids had and how much it helped them to get more self-confidence and power to do something against their stuttering problems. Comments on Summer Camp! From: Pete Hawkes Date: 10/1/99 Time: 5:25:27 AM Remote Name: 22.214.171.124 Comments Kathrin, WOW!!! What a fantastic SummerCamp you people organised. It is just so good to see alot of work being done to help children/teenagers who stutter. More group therapy like this should be available all over the world to kids!. As a young stutterer, it can be hard to make friends at school so this camp gives kids the chance to meet others and not feel ashamed of there speech, as well as receiving therapy. I'm sure all those children benefited greatly from the camp. It is very good to see therapist, children parents and volunteers like yourself working together to help young stutterers.:0) Re: Comments on Summer Camp! From: Date: 10/4/99 Time: 2:59:36 AM Remote Name: 126.96.36.199 Comments Thank you! For us the group therapeutic effect was very important. Many of these children had never seen another stutterer before in their lives. So it was important for them to see that they are not alone with the problem. Unfortunately this group therapy was the problem why the insurances didn't want to pay for our summercamp. We are now fighting for acceptance of this approach. I think as the children showed great steps foward we are on the right way. Kathrin summer camps From: Elizabeth Owens Date: 10/8/99 Time: 2:08:01 PM Remote Name: 188.8.131.52 Comments I am a student at East Carolina University. I have always wondered if there were camps for children who stutter and if there were any in the south. I think that these camps are an excellent way for children to meet other children who stutter, and also a way for them to gain self confidence. I have a couple of questions concerning the camp. Have you followed any of these children once they leave the camp? You said in the article that these children "were in a safe, positive enviornment in which there were no expectations of fluency." Do these feelings gained during the camp carry over once they leave this safe and positive enviornment? Also, what is "easy stuttering" and are other method used at this camp? Thanks for your time! Re: summer camps From: Kathrin Hšlzl Date: 10/11/99 Time: 8:32:55 AM Remote Name: 184.108.40.206 Comments Here the answers to your questions: Have you followed any of these children once they leave the camp? So far, this has been our first summercamp and it took place this summer. However, follow up meetings are planned and the first one is going to take place in a few weeks. We are also in contact with many of the children and their parents. One child for example has asked us to go to his school and talk to pupils and staff about stuttering. Do these feelings gained during the camp carry over once they leave this safe and positive enviornment? From theirs therapist the children get some exercises which they are supposed to do as often as possible, especially when they feel low. From letters from parents we so far know that this feeling has staid so far. Of course we know that it is not easy to stay positive when old communication pressures return, but we are planning selfhelp groups for those children so they can meet, share their experiences and give each other comfort. What is "easy stuttering" and are other method used at this camp? It is not really possible to describe the method used in our camp. I can only give a brief outline for further questions please contact our therapist Mr. Herziger, firstname.lastname@example.org, the summercamp is also on the internet under http://www.sommercamp.de there you can also see pictures of our project. What the therapy is based on is a playful approach to stuttering. Normally therapy is most of the time only single lessons in an abnormal surrounding. The camp provided a more natural surrounding and further many different partners to talk to so the children could use their new way of speaking. Getting to know your own body and feelings were an important part of the therapy. The actual phonetic therapy was learning a soft onset. Many people of our staff had also had therapy with Mr. Herziger which made the children see that they could also achieve the same thing if they tried. This is actually as much as I can say about the therapy. Helpful Information From: Cheri Smith Date: 10/11/99 Time: 7:42:13 PM Remote Name: 220.127.116.11 Comments Hi! I just wanted to say thanks for the helpful information. The camp sounds wonderful! I am taking a web-based stuttering class at the graduate level, and we had to pick a paper from this conference for our class. We had to read a paper and summarize it. I really enjoyed it. Thanks, Cheri Smith Re: Helpful Information From: Kathrin Hšlzl Date: 10/14/99 Time: 3:43:15 AM Remote Name: 18.104.22.168 Comments Thanks for the positive feedback. I hope our example encourages other groups to also organise such a camp. It was a lot of work, but helping those children is definitely worth it. Kathrin Some things never change From: Bernie Weiner (email@example.com) Date: 10/11/99 Time: 9:58:59 PM Remote Name: 22.214.171.124 Comments Kathrin, Many years ago I attended a summer camp for people who stutter. The camp was sponsored by the University of Michigan. I can only say that it was an experience I have never forgotten. Although I gradually lost the fluency I gained at the camp, it did build a framework for tecniques that I still fall back on to this day. I feel that it is extremly important to provide some sort of follow-up to your camp. The children need some type of continuity to fully experience and retain some of their fluency skills. The daily routine which you described was pretty much like that at the camp I attended. See, some things never change. Bernie Weiner Re: Some things never change From: Kathrin Hšlzl Date: 10/14/99 Time: 3:40:40 AM Remote Name: 126.96.36.199 Comments We know about the problem that one slowly loses his/her fluency again that's why we consider the follow up meetings as very important. In two weeks the children are going to meet again in Navis to refresh what they have learned. Another follow up meeting is planned for January, one for spring and next summer the children of this summer camp have the opportunity to attend the last week of summer-camp 2000 also to refresh their fluency. We have also invited the SLPs who work with the children in their hometowns to come along to the meeting, this way they can get to know the therapist of the camp and learn his 'techniques' so they can work with the children in the same way at home. We believe that this is a quite good system to keep the children from falling back into old patterns. However, the children will have to do a lot of work themselves, but we do what we can to help them and give them feed back. Summer camp for children and teenagers who stutter From: Kelley Sharkey Date: 10/14/99 Time: 1:42:37 PM Remote Name: 188.8.131.52 Comments What advice or suggestions do you give to the child (who stutters) when peer ridiculing occurs? Re: Summer camp for children and teenagers who stutter From: Kathrin Hšlzl Date: 10/19/99 Time: 4:10:55 AM Remote Name: 184.108.40.206 Comments That is a very hard question and it took me some time to think about the answer. The question is how old the child is? If he goes to school I think it would be best to talk to the teacher about the problem and find a way to face the group together. Otherwise, giving the child a strong self confidence that there is nothing to be a shame of, might help as well. I personally believe that it is also good to meet other stutterers so that the child sees: "I am not alone with my problem and there are also other people who have the same problem and they cope with it quite well." A selfhelp group might help there. In Austria we don't have a selfhelp group for stuttering kids only for adults and parents of stutterers, so our therapy camp offered the opportunity to see other stuttering children and talk about the problems. A friend of mine whose little brother stuttered once told me that when he and the brother were kids. He only needed to hear somebody saying "Why do you talk so strangely?" and he already bet that guy up. At this point of the story another friend of mine said: "I was only five and I didn't want to make fun of him I was only curious. And before I could finish the sentence, he had already hit me." Looking back now, we figured that this was not the right reaction, but the kids had become oversensitive when it came to the speech problem and the big brother thought he had to protect the little one not noticing when it was only a question and when it was teasing. Organizing a Camp From: Cheri Smith Date: 10/14/99 Time: 8:50:55 PM Remote Name: 220.127.116.11 Comments Hi again! You mentioned that you hoped your example would encourage others to organize a camp. What advice would you give to a person who was interested in doing that? Cheri Smith Re: Organizing a Camp From: Kathrin Hšlzl Date: 10/15/99 Time: 4:49:34 AM Remote Name: 18.104.22.168 Comments My advise for a person who wants to organize such a camp. It is a lot of work but it is worth it. Unless you are yourself a SLP you will have to find a therapist that is willing to do that. Generally, I believe it is good to work together with a local self help group or a stuttering association. Because they often have the addresses you might need. For us fundraising was one of the biggest problems because we thought it is very important to keep the costs for the parents as low as possible. We were also quite inexperienced in fundraising. Also getting the media working for us was hard. Big associations have professional fundraisers or people who are responsible for that they can help a lot. For the …SIS we are so small that we are all working voluntarily and have no professional background. But asking, asking, nagging and not giving up is very effective. Actually my advise for someone who wants to organize such a camp is, talk personally to somebody who has already done that. The experience does not need to be in the field of stuttering but more on the organizational aspects as fundraising and public relations. 1. find a therapist. 2. Find a place where you want to build up the camp. 3. Calculate how much the camp will cost all in all, food for the kids, accomodation, day trips,... How much should the parents pay, how much can they pay? How much money will you have to get from funding? 4. Print a leaflet that people want to see what they are paying for. 5. Fundraising, who might give money: Government, town, tourist associations, big firms and businesses, other non-profit organizations 6. Get newspapers, TV stations, radio to talk about the camp in order to recruit the children 7. Leaflets to schools, health organizations, social insurance and so on. The leaflet has to attract children as well as parents 8. Recruit staff 9. Make sure that after the registration the parents will get all the information they need. For example: help with the paperwork of refunds from insurance companies to get refunding, ... 10. Also during the camp keep the media hooked 11. After the camp provide follow up sessions, thank you letters to sponsors,... 12. Never forget that the kids are the important thing and that they should have fun!!! That is only a rough outline of things you have to do, a lot of small things. Although the list looks long now. Never forget that you don't have to do all by yourself, get people to help you. Kathrin Continuing the Experience From: Maureen Ebenhoh Date: 10/15/99 Time: 3:29:37 PM Remote Name: 22.214.171.124 Comments Kathrin, The camp sounds like a great program. I think a summer camp experience can be so powerful for a child. I really liked that the therapy was incorporated into regular camp activities that are more natural for children, rather than an Žnvironment like a therapy room. I think play is a great place to start in showing kids that fluency is possible. I also think that a camp experience is an excellent opportunity to help children increase their self-worth and confidence. I'm glad to hear that follow-up groups are being organized to help campers integrate their experience into "real life". What do you think of the idea of having some of those children (maybe older ones) come back to the camp as helpers next year? It would certainly take more coordination and planning, but might be beneficial for new campers to meet children who have been through the program and good for the previous campers to increase their confidence. Re: Continuing the Experience From: Kathrin Hšlzl Date: 10/19/99 Time: 4:14:26 AM Remote Name: 126.96.36.199 Comments So far, the staff consists of many people who have had therapy with the same therapist. So the kids can see that it has worked. But, we will keep your suggestion in mind and as soon as the children are old enough to be staff of the camp we will do that. For neyt year the children have the opportunity to visit the camp during the last week of regular camptime, so they can refresh their memory of the therapy. Thanks for the suggestion. Summer Camp From: Meghan Telitz Date: 10/18/99 Time: 9:33:47 AM Remote Name: 188.8.131.52 Comments Kathrin, I think that this is a wonderful concept. The format seems very relaxed and fun for the children. I do have a couple of questions regarding the support groups. Will they be lead by SLPs that worked in the camp? I realize this may be difficult to arrange. However, I think the continuity may be helpful for the children. Also, would it be conducted as another follow-up, or would they meet on a regular basis? Thank you for your time. Re: Summer Camp From: Kathrin Hšlzl Date: 10/19/99 Time: 3:57:16 AM Remote Name: 184.108.40.206 Comments So far, we have some problems concerning the support groups because they are very difficult to arrange. In the follow up meetings everyone who worked in the camp will be there again. For the support groups we are still trying to find a way how to put the children together, as the groups should be near their home and we don't want the parents to drive for hours to get the kids to their meetings. As we have this trouble with the groups we now offer the local SLPs that work with the children at home an opportunity to get to know Mr. Herziger's therapy so they can go on in the same direction. Summer Camp From: Denise Christenson firstname.lastname@example.org Date: 10/19/99 Time: 7:20:32 AM Remote Name: 220.127.116.11 Comments You stated that each district was organising self- help groups for the children. At this time how often have the self-help meetings been set for? Re: Summer Camp From: Kathrin Hšlzl Date: 10/20/99 Time: 3:21:01 AM Remote Name: 18.104.22.168 Comments So, far I have to admit that we didn't have any self-help groups in the districts, although we are planning to have them. We still have problems organising them. The self-help groups are supposed to become quite independent on their own so they should decide how often they want to meet. But at least once a month should be best. Kathrin comments From: Brenda Natala Date: 10/20/99 Time: 3:52:22 PM Remote Name: 22.214.171.124 Comments I applaud your efforts. It takes lots of energy and time to attempt such a project. It sounds like Austria is way ahead of the United States. I find it interesting that this camp was organized by a self-help organization. As far as I know, we don't have any intensive therapy options available. Perhaps in Canada??? What long days you had! Wasn't it difficult getting children to wake up so early? Were the staff paid from the funds you had raised? Keep us informed on future camps and the directions they take. Re: comments From: Kathrin Hšlzl Date: 10/22/99 Time: 5:35:02 AM Remote Name: 126.96.36.199 Comments Yes, it was very hard to get them to get up, but it was not hard to get them into bed again at night. So that was the good thing about the long day. The staff was paid from the funds we had raised before. The payment was accurate. Comment/Question on the camp for children and teenagers From: Darion McMillan Graduate Student at Southern University Baton Rouge, LA Date: 10/20/99 Time: 4:45:42 PM Remote Name: 188.8.131.52 Comments This article was very interesting. In concurrence to the article, the integration of these summer camps have proven to be significantly beneficial to children with dysfluency disorders. Question: Will future objectives for the program sanction Speech-Language Pathology Interns to assist in program enhancement. Re: Comment/Question on the camp for children and teenagers From: Kathrin Hšlzl Date: 10/22/99 Time: 5:37:54 AM Remote Name: 184.108.40.206 Comments We are always open for everything new and so we try to keep up with the latest trends in therapie. SLPs who want to get to know our approach are always invited to join our camp. camp From: Janet Hartman Date: 10/21/99 Time: 11:15:15 AM Remote Name: 220.127.116.11 Comments What a terrific opportunity for children. Working in the public schools in a small community, I find that my students have no one to relate to in regard to their speech disability. Often they are the only one in the entire school that stutter. A camp like you suggest/operate must do wonders for a child's self-esteem. They are not alone.