VOICES TOGETHER PARTNERS WITH DUKE UNIVERSITY FOR RESEARCH
July, 24, 2014
Voices Together is excited to announce that we have a new collaboration for research with Duke University out of the Duke Bass Connection Initiative. The goal of the research project is to measure the efficacy of the Voices Together in Education program in NC public schools special education classrooms.
Through Bass Connections, Duke is channeling its unique culture of collaboration, its ambitious entrepreneurial spirit, and established record of applying classroom learning to pressing global problems, to create a distinctive new model for education.
For Voices Together, research is the first strategic phase of national replication. This project allows us to study and obtain sophisticated outcome data in our core program. The second phase of replication, which is already in process through our partnership with The Kenan Trust, will develop a curriculum for teachers and will be studied in the fall of 2015. With these important partnerships we will have the ability to impact a broad number individuals with developmental challenges nationally. The research team is composed of some of the most established and noted experts in the field of psychiatry and autism, education, neuroscience and public policy.
Project researcher, Dr. Geraldine Dawson, Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science, Psychology, and Neuroscience, and Director of the Duke Center for Autism and Brain Development said, “We are very excited to be partnering with Voices Together on this innovative project. About 30 percent of children and adolescents with autism are minimally verbal.We hope to demonstrate that the Voices Together program helps these children learn to communicate more effectively with others.”
We look forward to keeping you updated as we move through this exciting year.
Contact: Carrie Kovalick, Operations and Communications Manager
(919) 942-2714 Office, (919) 699-4257 Cell
WILLIAM R. KENAN, JR. CHARITABLE TRUST GRANTS TRIANGLE AND TRIAD AREA NONPROFIT $250,000 TO EXPAND THEIR GROUND BREAKING PROGRAM
Chapel Hill, NC – April 2nd, 2014- A local non-profit organization, Voices Together, received a $250,000 matching grant from the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust, to develop, test and implement a teacher training pilot program for special education classrooms.
Voices Together is a highly effective and specialized music therapy program that helps people with intellectual and developmental disabilities improve their socialization, self-expression, and communication skills.
The reality is that today 1 in 68 children in the US are diagnosed with Autism. This grant will be used to help address this challenge by developing new and dynamic methods for teachers. This two-year pilot project will equip teachers with the tools to help students in special education classrooms speak, listen, organize their thoughts, identify emotions and connect with others. The Voices Together methods are highly motivating as they alternate between language and music and engage students on a base level. Ultimately these critical skills that students learn through the program will build the foundation to transform their own lives.
Voices Together, chief executive, Yasmine White said, “Teachers are struggling to reach children with special needs who have difficulty speaking, expressing and organizing their thoughts, connecting with their peers and identifying their emotions. Resources for educators are dwindling and teachers are searching for innovative ways to help their students learn. Students in this program don’t realize that they are learning because they are having fun while being challenged! We are excited to have the opportunity to bring new ideas and motivating methods into the classroom and by doing so potentially reach thousands of students across the country.”
Fundraising is underway for the $250,000 matching amount.
ABOUT VOICES TOGETHER
Founded in 2006, Voices Together unlocks language and helps transform individual’s social and emotional wellbeing through a music-based educational and therapeutic program. The organization annually serves over 500 individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities in the community and has provided programming in public schools in Orange, Chapel Hill, Wake, Durham, Alamance, Chatham and Guilford counties. Voices Together uses its evidence-based Vocal Interactive Communication Strategies (VOICS™) and original songs to unlock language, facilitate communication and accelerate learning.
ABOUT THE WILLIAM R. KENAN, JR. CHARITABLE TRUST
The William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust was established in 1965 through the bequest of William R. Kenan, Jr., a gifted scientist, business executive, and generous philanthropist with a deep and abiding commitment to education. The Kenan Charitable Trust supports educational institutions and programs across the United States, with particular emphasis in New York, North Carolina, Kentucky, and Florida, and also supports organizations serving the basic needs of under-resourced children and their families in these regions.