To Haiti & Back: Addressing Complex Communication Needs in Extreme Poverty

Gormley, J. (2017, November). To Haiti & back: Addressing complex communication needs in extreme poverty. Poster presentation at the Annual Conference of the American Speech-Language Hearing Association (ASHA), Los Angeles, CA.

Gormley (2017) Poster (Pdf)

Abstract: This poster provides augmentative and alternative (AAC) service delivery considerations for SLPs working with community members, families, and individuals with complex communication needs who live in poverty. Case examples of AAC training within areas of extreme poverty in Haiti will be provided to illustrate practice recommendations.

There are many programs available for speech-language pathologists to travel to impoverished nations and provide AAC services. When providing these services in addition to working in low-resource areas, Gormley suggests the following;

  1. Consider the impact of poverty on the family’s sociocultural background
  2. Consider access goods and services
  3. Work within a team to provide ongoing, collaborative support
  4. Investigate the strengths, needs, and goals of all stakeholders
  5. Provide meaningful and relevant instruction to individuals with CCN and their communication partners 
  6. Create and evaluate sustainable AAC strategies

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