Light and Salt — Outreach and Development Project

Outreach and Development Project

  • Impact
    • 331 participants attended 10 training seminars and 2 parent sharing sessions
    • 10 monthly support group meetings and counseling sessions were held
    • 104 individuals participated in 13 hand chimes classes and 9 performances
      • 943 individuals attended community events where the hand chimes choir performed
      • 505 attended a concert featuring a 15-minute video and a 20-minute play about raising a child with DD
    • 214 individuals participated in parent-organized arts and crafts, cooking, and dancing classes
    • 760 individuals in Light and Salt’s group mailing list received monthly newsletter in Chinese
    • 800 copies of Chinese and English language resource guides were published and distributed
    • Survey results of 14 parents and volunteers showed positive impacts from the project
    • Children’s independent-living skills and development of increased emotional well-being were enhanced through the various programs

Statewide Need
More than half of Texans are black, Hispanic/Latino, Asian, or Native American and are less likely to receive the services and supports needed for full inclusion in their communities. Frequently, available services and supports are not culturally competent. Support groups can help people receive culturally competent services and supports so that they can be fully included in their community. These groups can also help the Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities better understand how to create change so that services can be provided in ways that are a good fit with the cultural values, characteristics, and customs of the people they serve.

Project Goal
Create a culturally and linguistically competent program to empower Asian American families with better knowledge, resources, and skills to raise children with developmental disabilities (DD). Build upon the foundation of Light and Salt Association’s Special Needs Care Center and provide training for families and help children with DD develop life skills to promote independence.

Project Summary
Ten training seminars featuring speakers with different professional backgrounds and two parent sharing sessions were held with the goal of enhancing parenting and self-advocacy skills. Topics included dancing therapy, health education for kids with DD, musical therapy for children with language difficulties, transitional programs for individuals with DD, and psychosocial support for parents.

A teacher with 15 years of special-education experience, was contracted to develop curricula for children’s programs, assist parents during monthly support group meetings, and provide counseling sessions for families if needed. A part-time music teacher was hired to conduct hand-chime classes for older children and develop a music curriculum for younger children. She instructed 13 classes and students held nine performances. Members of the hand-chimes choir and dancing team were also invited to participate in three concerts and eight community events.

A play written by a parent was produced and performed during two concerts to further raise awareness. A 15-minute video featured five families sharing their stories of raising children with DD was produced and shown at these events.

Parents organized cooking classes, with the goal of increasing independent living skills, and arts and crafts classes for children. With the help of a licensed physical therapist, parents also designed and held eight dancing classes. The goals were to build body/sense coordination and help children express emotional needs through dancing and body movement.

Light and Salt published 12 monthly newsletters in Chinese, with articles written by parents and volunteers, summaries of monthly activities, and a 13-page resource guide. A Chinese-language website was developed to provide up-to-date information related to DD.

Results from surveys of parents and volunteers showed positive impacts of the project. All respondents reported that special topic seminars enhanced their knowledge and skills pertinent to raising children with DD, as well as improved their children’s quality of life.

Project Period
Aug 2011 – Jul 2012

9800 Town Park Drive, Suite 255
Houston, TX 77036

Geographic Reach
Houston and surrounding areas