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Autism therapist speaks at Kiwanis meeting
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Photo courtesy of the LARGO KIWANIS
Vera Sheremeta, right, accepts a certificate of appreciation from Bruce Blazej, president of the Kiwanis Club of Largo/Mid-Pinellas, after speaking to the club Aug. 1.
LARGO – Vera Sheremeta, an autism therapist at Paul B. Stevens Exceptional Student Education Center in Clearwater, was the featured speaker at the breakfast meeting of the Kiwanis Club of Largo/Mid-Pinellas Aug. 1.

The Paul B. Stevens school is part of the Pinellas County public school system and has a large number of students on autism spectrum.

These students are mostly nonverbal and have significant problems in redirecting their behavior when they are unable to communicate a want or need. Usually very intelligent, they get easily frustrated in their inability to communicate, which often leads to behavior outbursts.

As a result the school is looking to fund multi-sensory equipment to help stimulate students’ senses, which will help them with eye contact, tactile input and verbal responses. The equipment is interactive, and will help show the students cause and effect, which will help them develop motor skills, how to control their environment, and ultimately lead to independence.

This equipment will cost about $4,700, and the school already has 12 percent of that donated. Anyone who wishes to help can visit www.finditfunditflorida.com/pinellas/grant/3749.

Kiwanis is a worldwide service organization founded in 1915 and dedicated to improving the lives of children through local Kiwanis clubs.

The Largo Kiwanis Club is accepting new members, and meets twice a month: for a breakfast on first Fridays, 7:30 to 8:30 a.m., at Royal Palms, 200 Lake Ave. NE., Largo, and for dinner on second Thursdays, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., at Roosterfish Grill, 776 Missouri Ave., also in Largo.

For more information, call Bruce Blazej at 536-0412 or visit www.facebook.com/KiwanisClubLargo.
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