Speech & Language
Reading & Academic Support
We begin all therapeutic relationships with a 60 minute to 3 hour evaluation to take a deep dive into each of our clients' unique strengths, needs, and goals. We ask that you provide outside reports, therapy notes, IEPs, and any other information that you believe may assist us in obtaining a full picture of our client.
Because of the thorough nature of our evaluations, we may require up to two weeks to complete the report. We then review assessment results with you at our next scheduled appointment and collaboratively make any revisions or adjustments to ensure that the final report is as authentic and reflective of your strengths, needs, and goals as possible.
You are able to share our report with schools, external providers, family members, and any other members of your system of supports. You can also ask that we provide the report to others. We will ask you to complete a written release of information prior to sharing reports, notes, or any other information with others.
Therapy should be individualized to match unique needs. Gather and Grow Therapy Services offers an equally unique lens through which to honor differences, harness strengths, and build capacity.
In one-on-one sessions, SLPs, Social Workers, and OTs work to develop and practice the skills you or your child needs in the context of a safe environment. We use a blended approach of highly effective, evidence-based interventions from a neurodivergent-affirming, trauma-assumed lens. Through individualized plans based upon unique needs identified during our assessment process, we work together with you to develop root capacities across social communication, executive functioning, emotional regulation, and sensory processing.
Our team of therapists are trained in holistic interventions to support neurodivergent folx with challenges that may not fall under traditional therapeutic codes due to insurance and other systemic restrictions. These areas can include: academic and college support, vocational and work-related challenges, designing a fulfilling life, social and communication skills development in adults, and addressing personal goals from a future-oriented lens.
The distinction between therapy and life coaching is that under the therapeutic lens, we are required to address skills related to some kind of a medical diagnosis and end therapy once a client has reached a certain level of measurable progress. Through life coaching, we are able to work beyond the limitations of what may traditionally be considered "medically necessary." Life coaching remains therapeutic in that it is provided by a therapist with advanced training and we utilize evidence-based practice to achieve solutions-focused results.
Our groups are unique in that we don't train neuronormative social skills. Social skills "training" often leads to masking and the research is clear that autistic masking or camouflaging is linked to anxiety and depression as well as a host of other negative mental health outcomes.
We focus instead on creating meaningful connections and match clients based upon age and developmental level as well as personality and preferences. This step is vital to ensuring that each person gets the most out of group sessions. We then focus on neurodivergent affirming goals like self-advocacy, regulation, understanding perspectives and the validity of unique perspectives, problem solving, and confidence building. Absent rare circumstances, we generally begin in 1:1 prior to enrollment in groups.
The unique way that we match clients yields social motivation, empowerment, and most importantly increases the likelihood that the group would develop authentic relationships and a sense of belonging. That's why we call them Connection Groups.
Parents are an integral part of the therapeutic process for children who are not yet developmentally autonomous. We recommend that parents of children ages 9 & under attend all 1:1 therapy sessions. For adolescents and older clients, attending 1:1 therapy sessions can become counterproductive to developmental independence. We work with every family as the unique relationship that it is. These are general guidelines and your therapist may make different recommendations.
For our older, more independent clients, we may recommend additional parent coaching sessions that occur outside of regular, weekly sessions. We may also recommend additional parent coaching sessions if coaching is challenging during the session or if you would like more support. In this case, insurance does not cover parent education and these sessions would need to be covered through another funding source.
Funding for parent coaching sessions includes private pay, the Imagine! ASD grant program, CES waiver, and FSSP funding. Your local CCB can support you to access funding.
The work we do within the context of therapy is invaluable to our clients and their families. However, it is limited without carryover. That is why we assemble a tribe of support. Through coaching and consulting, we build relationships with significant persons to optimize therapeutic outcomes. From parents to siblings, friends, teachers, other providers, classmates, coworkers, etc., all are welcome as we embark upon this exciting journey together.
We love to provide advocacy and support throughout the IEP process, whether that be written, verbal, or in person consultations with members of the school team.
Unfortunately, insurance specifically excludes educational support in coverage of services, which means that educational consulting must be covered through another funding source, most often private pay. The Imagine! ASD grant program and CES waiver (under parent education) will fund educational consulting.
In order for us to attend IEP meetings, we ask for 30 days notification in order to coordinate scheduling. We ask to be included in the IEP coordination process and CC'ed on all scheduling emails to ensure that we are able to coordinate with other clients and families and uphold our commitments.
Independent Educational Evaluations
In circumstances where there is disagreement about an IEP, parents have the right to request an Independent Educational Evaluation (IEE) at the cost of the school district. We are then selected by families and hired by the school district to complete an evaluation as a neutral third party.
Through this process, we provide thorough analysis of the IEP according to our respective disciplines, which yields a written report that is provided to the school and family simultaneously. Should families desire IEP attendance by our team, the school district does not pay for this support and we would explore other funding options.
To remain a neutral third party in the IEE process, we do not provide IEEs to current clients and instead refer to other therapists in the area. We will work with families post-IEE should the family wish to pursue private therapy.
Gather+Grow provides limited therapeutic waiver services under SLS, DD, and CES. Our sister nonprofit, Inclusion on Purpose, provides robust programming under the DD and SLS waiver in the areas of Supported Community Connections, Behavioral Counseling, Supported Employment, and Mentorship. Visit their website here for more information!
Stance on Diagnoses and Qualification for Services
At Gather+Grow, most of our clients do have an autism or ADHD diagnosis or identify as autistic or otherwise neurodivergent. At the same time, we honor all forms of neurodivergence regardless of formal diagnosis. Women in particular are diagnosed on average at a much later time due to internalizing, versus the much more male prominent phenotype of externalizing symptoms.
There are many systemic barriers that can invalidate an individual or family’s experience with neurodivergence, which can increase risk for vulnerability and isolation due to not being “disabled enough”. We do work within medical systems in order to make services accessible by utilizing funding like insurance, waivers, and grants. At the same time, we also seek to serve all who identify as falling on the neurodivergent spectrum while minding our scope of practice.
Scope of Practice
Gather+Grow Therapy Service's staff are ethically obligated not to accept clients when they lack training or expertise required to support certain diagnoses or symptomatology. Our therapists are specially trained in autism spectrum, ADHD, and related neurodivergence, but may not be trained in all co-presenting diagnoses, conditions, and needs.
Individual practitioners may have expertise in various therapeutic modalities and must act within the scope of their professional practice at all times. When concerns regarding client progress, therapeutic rapport, or appropriateness of services arise, Gather+Grow may refer prospective and current clients to other services and/or professionals with appropriate specialization.