I hope our story will contribute to making a positive impact on EI/ECSE services. 

Three years ago, a daunting diagnosis was entering our life and most things have not been the same since. I have faced frightening and complex information about the thing that matters most to me in this life. My daughter Sofia was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at 9 months old at Child Development and Rehabilitation in Eugene. We were immediately connected with EI services. When our journey began my daughter was extremely behind on her development, she had vision issues and didn’t see well, she had trouble eating and swallowing, she couldn’t sit up or roll over, she struggled with sensory issues, her muscles were very tight, she was uncomfortable and cried all the time. EI services helped us set small reasonable goals with physical therapy, occupational therapy, feeding, and sensory issues at home in an environment where she was most comfortable. EI informed us of services we never knew existed. My daughter has now transitioned to ECSE. With that she still receives services at home and at school. My daughter sits up on her own, she crawls, she went from using a walker to taking steps and walking with limited supports. Her feeding has improved incredibly. She is learning fine motor skills and ways to deal with sensory processing issues. She is now connected with speech services. She is nonverbal so she’s learning sign language and using an iPad for communication. 

Being a Mommy of an extra special little girl can feel isolating much of the time, but because of that our lives have been touched by some of the most kindhearted and devoted people that walk the earth. EI gave me hope after her diagnosis and showed me there is life after diagnosis. We will forever be grateful for the services from EI/ECSE. The work they do everyday changes lives and gives young children with disabilities a fair start and the opportunity they deserve to learn and reach their best potential. I cannot express enough the importance of early childhood intervention services. 

I attached a few images of Sofia. If I can provide any additional information, please feel free to contact me anytime.

Thank you,

Nina Watkins