News>EFMP helps military families find children with special needs
The 20th Security Forces K-9 unit demonstrates the abilities of their dogs at the Child Find Clinic and Community Resources Awareness Fair at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C, Sept. 21, 2012. The fair was held by the 20th Force Support Squadron’s Exceptional Family Member Program. The purpose of the event was to discover children with special needs, introduce them to resources to help manage those needs, and to introduce families to others in similar situations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Krystal M. Jeffers/ Released)
Organizations from the base and the Sumter community gathered at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C, for the Child Find Clinic and Community Resources Awareness Fair Sept. 21, 2012. The 20th Force Support Squadron’s Exceptional Family Member Program held the fair to introduce families with special needs to these resources so that their needs could be better managed. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Krystal M. Jeffers/ Released)
The 20th Force Support Squadron’s Exceptional Family Member Program held a Child Find Clinic and Community Resources Awareness Fair here at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., Sept. 21, 2012. The clinic screened children between 2 and a half to 21 who were not currently enrolled in the public school system for deficiencies in their vision, hearing, speech, and developmental skills. Once special needs were identified, the EFMP connected the families to resources that could assist in managing those needs and improve the child’s skills in the deficient area. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Krystal M. Jeffers/ Released)
by Airman 1st Class Krystal M. Jeffers
20th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
9/25/2012 - SHAW AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. -- The 20th Force Support Squadron's Exceptional Family Member Program held a child find clinic and community resources awareness fair here, Sept. 21.
"The overall purpose of this event is to screen children between 2 and a half to 21 who are not currently enrolled in the public school system and identify kids with special needs," said Jerome 'JC' Brown, 20th FSS EFMP director. "Once we identify the special needs, we then introduce the kid to resources to improve their quality of life."
The clinic screened children's vision, hearing, speech, and developmental skills for deficiencies.
"If we identify the special needs, then we can give them the resources to address it," said Brown.
"We are trying to catch these special needs situations, whether they are medical or educational, as early as possible in the developmental stages," he continued. "That is because the earlier you introduce the child to resources that address the special needs, the needs are then able to be better managed. Some folks actually grow out of their special needs because of the services (provided to them)."
Along with a clinic to screen children for special needs, there was a carnival which included demonstrations from the 20th Security Forces Squadron's Military Working Dog unit, a bouncy castle, children's games and various mascots like Sparky the Fire Dog. There were also many vendors from the base and the Sumter community who had resources to offer to families with special needs.
"Everyone was really friendly and they watched over the kids," said Jasmine Almanza