Say it with Symbols is a mission-driven, small business advocating to improve the care and quality of life of adults with severe speech loss, and their caregivers, using no-tech picture communication.
I'm Randi Sargent, a parent, caregiver and advocate for loved ones who live with speech loss. Everyone deserves the right to have the say in their care. Unfortunately, many nonspeaking adults don't get that choice. Adults living with speech loss and need care following a stroke, Alzheimer’s dementia, Parkinson's, brain injury, spinal cord injury, ALS or developmental disabilities can have a voice in their care using picture augmentative communication aids (AAC). Say it with Symbols is dedicated to helping nonspeaking adults communicate their needs when words won't work, any where and any time. We can do better than charades.
Read my entrepreneurship story here.
Communicating is Caring
When our beautiful son was born with severe communication and intellectual disabilities, we pursued many specialized programs for him, but he never developed the ability to speak, read, write or walk independently. When he became an adult, I worried about how he could communicate to his caregivers that he was uncomfortable, bored or wanted to switch activities. Would his caregivers know how to use his high tech communication device?
When my son was in school, we were extremely fortunate to have had support from many dedicated special educators, speech pathologists and occupational therapists. From them, we learned how to use pictures to support my son's understanding, choices and communication. We learned to use picture-based supports and augmentative alternative communication (AAC) aids, low tech to high tech to enable my son to communicate. As he aged out of school, we found there were no easy-to-access communication boards available that addressed grown-up situations.
From that knowledge and lived experience, Say it with Symbols was born in 2008. SayitwithSymbols.com is the only resource dedicated to taking the guesswork out of caring for adults with cognitive/communication challenges with pre-made, easy-to-use, no tech, adult-appropriate picture communication books and boards that can be used safely in any care setting.
Using Pictures to Empower Independence
Caregivers live with constant guilt that are are not doing enough to help their dependent loved one. How will I learn to communicate with and support my loved one who needs my help with everything? How can I reduce my loved one's frustration and my own?
Our no-tech, easy to use picture communication boards and books are uniquely designed to support functional independence for adults based on best practices and academic research. Our products include adult-appropriate illustrations appropriate for adult daily living. We offer many pre-made picture communication books and boards to enable adults to voice a choice in their personal and health care. Our products have been field tested - and improved - by caregivers trying to communicate with their nonverbal loved ones.
And because we know that your need is urgent, we ship our products same or next day, six days a week. Express shipping is available at check out. We offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee so you can try our communication aids to make sure it's a good option for your loved one or patient.
Communication is a Human Right
Thankfully, person-centered planning is becoming more common in care centers. Alongside other aspects of daily living, it implies that care should be based on personal choice, not just the options available or convenient at the day program, hospital or residence. Everyone has the right to make choices. Join me on this journey to give people with complex communication and cognitive challenges a way to voice a choice in their personal and health care.
To learn if your loved one would benefit from an augmentative communication aids (AAC) device, consult with a licensed speech and language pathologist/AAC Specialist, occupational therapist or other assistive technology professional for an evaluation and on-going clinical treatment.
Please free to email me for recommendations on specific products, to share your story, or request a speaking or training session. I look forward to sharing this journey with you!
Thank you for being a proactive caregiver,
Caregiver | Author | Advocate
Giving Greetings Publishing
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Selected products also available on Amazon, Etsy, Teachers Pay Teachers