Families Speak Out
Our dedicated families are strong advocates for their children and active partners in their program planning and implementation.
Here, several families speak out about their children and their progress at Giant Steps.
"Alex was diagnosed with autism at the age 4. He struggled in the regular school system, and upon the recommendation of one of his Special Education teachers, we applied to Giant Steps. When he was accepted into the program we felt like we had won the lottery. The therapies that Alex has received from Giant Steps in the last three years have transformed our son. Back then, he was not able to hold a pencil -- now he can write his name. He was never interested in any kind of interactive physical activity -- now he engages with his siblings and enjoys playing trampoline basketball. He is much more verbal, now using full sentences and his iPad to communicate. We are so grateful to have been blessed with the opportunity for Alex to attend Giant Steps, and grateful to all his teachers, therapists and program assistants there for the wonderful progress our son is making."
-Carmelo & Rose, Alex’s parents
"Our family was struggling with our daughter Shir’s behaviour problems when we got the news that there was a space for her at Giant Steps. We quickly realized that we had not only found a great school for Shir, but that we had found a new family.
Giant Steps’ knowledgeable and compassionate staff designed an academic and therapy program tailored to Shir’s sensory and behavioural needs, and her behaviour improved rapidly. She is learning to communicate her needs and regulate her emotions, using sensory input and tools like a weighted blanket and the crash pad to reach a state of calm. Shir is more engaged in constructive activities and learning at school, and seeks out and greets her peers appropriately.
At Giant Steps, we get a lot of support from other parents who are in the same situation and are able to share tips and information that helps our kids. Our daughter is finally happy, arriving home each day with a smile – what a reward!"
-Dorit & Oded, Shir’s parents
"Our son Johnny is an energetic and happy 10 year-old boy who has made tremendous progress. Johnny is now motivated and engaged in communication. Using his PECS binder, iPad, and visuals, he is spontaneously requesting items and activities in various settings. The Squeeze Machine, Double Roller, trampoline and other therapeutic strategies address Johnny’s sensory and motor challenges and organize his mind and body. He loves the climbing wall, and with the focus and motivation he gains there and his “toolkit” of a basket system, visual schedule, first-then and token boards, Johnny is much more prepared for learning. He is working hard on his sight word vocabulary, his printing skills and numbers to 100, and loves the skating trips, swimming lessons and walks in the community with staff and students.
Johnny would not be where he is today without Giant Steps. The knowledgeable staff, innovative programming and specialized equipment have enabled our son to make wonderful gains!"
-Bessy & Mike, Johnny’s parents