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Rural Institute Partners with the YETI Program to Offer Support to Parents

YETI Youth Engagement Through Intervention

The Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities is partnering with the YETI (Youth Engagement Through Intervention) Program, which teaches communication skills to children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), to support the YETI STEP Program for parents and caregivers of children with ASD. YETI STEP (Youth Engagement Through Intervention—Support Through Education & Planning) offers resources to help families tailor behavioral strategies to their households.

Children with ASD can often benefit from targeted, specific intervention strategies that give them tools to communicate. However, parents and families may not have training and education to understand their children’s diagnoses, treatments, and interventions. To address this, the YETI STEP program helps families increase their knowledge and provides strategies to help their children improve behavior and increase communication. During the 90-minute sessions, families learn behavior management techniques to help their children increase language production. They then work one-on-one with a graduate student clinician to individualize the group lesson.

The Rural Institute is supporting a graduate student to facilitate the YETI STEP sessions. Rural Institute funds will also cover childcare for families so they can attend the YETI STEP program this spring, and provide printed resources for families to take home after each session.

The YETI Program is a partnership between the University of Montana Department of Communicative Sciences & Disorders and the Department of Psychology.  For more information, please contact Jennifer Closson at the DeWit RiteCare Speech Language and Hearing Clinic.

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