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Aspire of WNY Statement on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Tech Talk: New Partnership Announced and 3 Apps to improve Communication

Everyone at Aspire WNY is extremely happy to be partnering with local technology company BAK USA to further assist our clients.  BAK will be loaning Aspire nine tablets that will be specialized for various service setting to help clients with employment and education.  The tablets will also also afford staff members increased mobility to support increased field work and client comfort.  Needless to say, we’re excited to further implement technology to assist individuals with developmental disabilities in and around Buffalo.

Check out television coverage of the press conference announcing our partnership with BAK USA.

Our partner’s vision was launched six years ago after the 2010 earthquake in Haiti claimed the lives of 300,000 people.  At that time, owner J.P. Bak vowed to help rebuild the area by manufacturing permanent housing with the goal of erecting sustainable infrastructure done the right way — free of substandard work and effort.  That vision yielded an operation built around employing locals while simultaneously educating young people.  Bak’s vision expanded into building a manufacturing facility that would create local jobs, provide live training and affordable computers to schools and businesses that historically went without access to such luxuries.

After their success in Haiti, Bak established their successful blueprint in Buffalo as the thriving company became one of the first companies in history to build mobile computers on American soil.  With our new technology-based partnership in mind, we thought it was a great time to suggest three apps that can help individuals with disabilities.

Talkitt: Provides A Voice to Individuals With Speech Disorders

Talkitt helps individuals with speech, language and/or motor disorders.  These include but certainly aren’t limited to Parkinson’s disease, CP, stroke, brain damage, autism and ALS.  The app translates normally unintelligible pronunciations in to speech that can be understood, providing individuals an avenue to communicate using their own voice.  The technology driving the app is able to recognize an individual user’s own vocal patterns and, after calibrating, will “speak” the user’s words in a recognizable and coherent manner, allowing clear and easy communicate with others.  The program works in every language as well, so giving Talkitt a try could help break down borders to communication.

You can click this LINK to learn more at the Talkitt Website

Look At Me:  Improves Communication and Eye Contact   

Samsung’s LOOK AT ME app was designed to improve social skills in children who fall under the autism spectrum.  The innovative app gamifies interactions, assisting children in learning to read moods, remember faces and communicate their feelings with poses and facial expressions.  In fact, a test groups found that playing the game for even 15 minutes a day over an eight week period can yield an approximate 60 percent improvement in making eye contact and/or identifying facial expressions.  LOOK AT ME  gives users an incredible avenue to use modern technology to improve interpersonal communication.

Feel free to click this LINK to watch a short video on how the innovative apps works.

Stepping Stones:  Daily Routines Simplified into Pictures

The Stepping Stones app is designed to assists both Children and adults who would benefit from from visual support.  This includes individuals with developmental disabilities like Autism, learning disabilities or auditory processing deficits.  Users are able to create visual guides by using their very own photos, making sense of their daily schedules, stories or routines.  The visual supports can increase the user’s ability to develop or augment flexibility and/or independence.  It also teaches essential life skills and assists with sequential processing.

You can Click this LINK to learn more.

Everyone at Aspire WNY is looking forward to seeing our clients use BAK tablets to enhance their quality of life, education and employment opportunities.  Our incredible staff can’t wait to implement new possibilities when working with individuals with developmental disabilities in Erie County.  The new partnership accents our commitment to using the latest technology to bridge communication gaps.  It’s certainly an exciting time at Aspire and we’re looking forward to getting started!

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