Closing the lip and the palate makes a big difference in the lives of children with schisis. However, this does not completely resolve the problem. Every child born with an open palate needs speech therapy after closing this palate.
Because of the structural differences of the face and mouth that are associated with cleft lip and palate, children develop insecurity and avoidance behaviors in speaking situations within their communities. This leads to isolation, fears and anxieties which impact their social participation. To prevent this from happening, we provide quality speech therapy services that are free of charge across twelve different locations throughout Guatemala.
We currently employ 5 local speech therapists. Besides working with the children they also give parents information about speech development prior to the surgery of their child. In this way they can stimulate their children to develop a correct speech from home as well. The costs for one year of speech therapy are $190 per child..
COVID-19 UPDATE: At the moment it is not responsible to continue the speech therapy lessons in the same way as before, as it was given in person.Because we think it is important that our children are not behind in their speech, we have made it possible to offer the lessons online. In this case we provide the children and our speech therapists with an internet card, with which they can then come into contact with each other via WhatsApp-calling! It is going very well and our students are very enthusiastic. In June, no less than 38% of our children received speech therapy again! For more current information about COVID-19 and Tess Unlimited, please visit our Facebookpage or sign up for our newsletter (on the bottom of the homepage).