Carla Bertke Executive Director
December 15, 2013
Forty-one years ago, two mothers embarked on a journey to find resources that would assist their neurologically disabled children in reaching their potential. After traveling to Pennsylvania to learn a unique program of neurodevelopmental exercises, the mothers returned to the community and began providing these exercises in the basement of a local church. This humble beginning was the start of the Rehabilitation Center for Neurological Development. Forty-one years later, the Center has evolved into a non-profit organization that offers a comprehensive neurodevelopmental rehabilitation program, an EEG neurofeedback training program called the Brain Wellness Center, and Nicholas School, a special needs K through 8th grade non-public charter school.
The services offered by the Rehabilitation Center for Neurological Development and Nicholas school are unique. There are only five other centers in the United States that provide the types of services the Rehabilitation Center offers. No other center has a heated pool in which to provide aquatic therapy. Nicholas School is listed as one of three schools in the United States that combine curriculum and neurological programming to help students achieve their maximum potential.
The Neurodevelopmental Rehabilitation Program treats infants, children and adults who have been diagnosed with such brain related conditions as stroke, Traumatic Brain Injury, birth trauma, Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome, developmental delays as well as others. Services offered by the rehabilitation program are individually designed to stimulate each client’s brain and “rewire” the damaged or underdeveloped areas. Rehabilitative services may include neurodevelopmental therapy/exercises, cognitive/language development and tutoring, visual training, as well as aquatic therapy.
The Brain Wellness Center provides neurofeedback training to individuals who are experiencing difficulties associated with ADD/ADHD, learning disabilities, depression, anxiety, and others. The Brain Wellness Center offers neurofeedback training to clients who range in age from early childhood to older adult. Clients participating in neurofeedback training are able to improve behavior, improve learning, improve self-esteem, reduce anxiety, increase concentration, improve memory as well as improve attention.
The Aquatic Therapy & Wellness Center is designed to offer an effective alternative exercise option for those with limited mobility. Those individuals who have completed joint replacement or are diagnosed with arthritis can increase their range of motion, muscle tone and strength as well as reduce pain by enrolling in the aquatic program. The program also includes a Wellness Center that is open to the general community. As part of the Wellness Program the Center offers massage therapy, foot reflexology, water aerobics as well as other services designed to help reduce stress increase relaxation and provide an overall sense of well being.
Nicholas School is a K-8 grade special needs school that offers a comprehensive educational program of academic and perceptual motor skills training. Emphasis is placed on individualized training in reading, math, science, history and English as well as specifically designed neurodevelopmental program. These services are provided within the structure of individual or small group classes for at risk special needs children who are learning disabled, developmentally delayed, have Attention Deficit Disorder, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and other brain related disabilities. Nicholas School’s goal is to help prepare each student to successfully enter or re-enter mainstream public education or other educational site.
School Readiness Program is an 8-week program designed to serve 4 and 5 year old developmentally delayed children who are preparing to enter kindergarten in the next year. Offered during the summer, a morning and an afternoon session is offered with a total of 15 children enrolled in each session. The program focuses on improving neurological organization, perceptual/motor function, language and cognitive abilities as well as socialization skills will help create a sound foundation for learning. Our goal is to assist each child they begin their educational journey.
After School Program is a project specifically designed to increase neurological organization in elementary students ages 6 to 10 years old who are displaying developmental delays and difficulties in their current academic setting. The 8 week program is offered twice each academic year with a total of 15 children enrolled in each session. The purpose of the project is to provide an innovative and effective series of neurodevelopmental activities that are designed to improve the neurological organization of each participant. Neurological organization is the foundation for learning. As neurological organization improves academic performance will ultimately improve.
In the coming months we plan to share our years of knowledge, techniques and successes with you. Providing you the opportunity to learn why this unique and highly beneficial program provides new hope to so many.
To learn more about the Center, please visit our web site at www.rcnd.org. Be sure to follow us on Facebook as well. The Rehabilitation Center is a United Way Member Agency.
Carla Bertke is the Executive Director for Rehabilitation Center for Neurological Development and Nicholas School.