Speech Hens is a dynamic duo of certified Speech-Language Pathologists who came together to help bridge a gap in services for the Norfolk and Haldimand County areas. Initially only providing speech camp in the summer, their services extend to a variety of speech and language therapy services, parents programs, and community-based programs. Why "Speech Hens"? These city-born chicks, moved to the country to establish roots. Now, mothers, living in century homes, these Hens have made it their goal to provide quality services to the rural settings.

Speech Hens is a dynamic duo of registered Speech-Language Pathologists who came together to help bridge a gap in services for the Norfolk and Haldimand County areas. Initially only providing speech camp in the summer, their services now extend to a variety of speech and language therapy programs, parent education sessions and workshops, and community-based events.

Why "Speech Hens"?  These city-born chicks moved to the country to establish roots. Now mothers living on farms, these Hens have made it their goal to support their rural community in the best way they know how.

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Laura Downey
co-owner, Speech-Language Pathologist

Laura is a licensed Speech-Language Pathologist and proud mother to three beautiful daughters. She obtained her Master's degree at the State University of New York at Buffalo and has been working the last 10 years in school settings and in-home private care. As a devoted mother, she understands the emphasis on family-centered and client-centered care. It has been a dream to open a private clinic in a rural setting focusing on educating families, and offering quality and unique programs to the area.

Training/Certifications

  • ​​Hanen ® Certification: It Takes Two to Talk

  • PECS Training (Level 1)

  • Motor Speech 101 Training and Digging Deeper Course

  • SOS Approach to Feeding Training

  • Pediatric Nutrition Course 

Special Interests:

Although all areas of this profession are of interest, Laura is taking more of a focus towards feeding development and supporting families of picky eaters. She continues to enjoy working with preschool and school-aged children with speech sound disorders and language disorders.  ​

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Lori Holstein
independent contractor; pediatric speech-language pathologist

Lori graduated from the University of Alberta in 1988 with a Bachelor of Science in Speech-Language Pathology. She moved to Simcoe and has been practicing as a Licensed Speech-Language Pathologist for 33 years. Until 2019, Lori was the Senior SLP for Haldimand Norfolk's Preschool Speech and Language (PSL) program. Lori calls Boston home, along with her husband and two of her three children. She is also a busy musician and author!

 

Training/Certifications:

  • ​​Hanen ® certified: It Takes Two to Talk

  • ​​Hanen ® certified: More than Words

  • ​​Hanen ® certified: ABC and Beyond

  • PECS-Trained (Level 1 and Level 2)

  • Completed the Ministry of Children and Community Social Services (MCCSS) Motor Speech Disorders training

Special Interests: 

Lori is especially interested in helping Autistic children to express themselves and in helping their parents and educators provide opportunities for children to express themselves fully and frequently.

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Marianne Ward
co-owner, speech-language pathologist

Marianne is a licensed Speech-Language Pathologist and proud mother of a beautiful daughter. She obtained her Master's degree in Communicative Disorders and Sciences from State University of New York at Buffalo. Since then, she has been passionately working with both children and adults in a variety of setting and with a variety of communication and swallowing disorders. She is excited to be part of Speech Hens and finally living her dream of owning a private clinic. 

Training/Certifications

  • ​​Hanen ® Certification: It Takes Two to Talk

  • Hanen ® Never Too Soon for Literacy: Paving the Way to Literacy Success

  • PECS Training (Level 1)

  • Speech and Stuttering Institute: Motor Speech Disorders Assessment and Treatment

  • Delivering SMARTER Intervention - Structured Literacy Training

Special Interests:

Marianne enjoys working with individuals across the age spectrum. She is particularly interested in helping children achieve success with language and literacy development; communication through Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC); and speech sound development.

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Amanda Bradstreet
communicative disorders assistant

Amanda is a Communicative Disorders Assistant and proud to be part of the Speech Hens Team.  She studied Linguistics at McMaster University to obtain her Bachelor of Arts with Honours and then carried on to complete a Post Graduate diploma at Georgian College as a Communicative Disorders Assistant. This is where she decided to follow her dream of working with children with speech and language concerns.  Amanda is a mom of twin boys and through her personal experiences and professional experiences, recognizes the need and importance of family-centred care.  She enjoys spending time with her boys swimming and playing baseball, reading and walking in nature during the cooler months.

Training/Certifications:

  • Hanen ® Certified, Helping Verbal Children with ASD Tune-in to Others 

  • Hanen ® Certified, Fostering Peer Interactions & Building Emergent Literacy 

  • Hanen ® Certified, Communicating Together More Than Words Way 

  • Picture Exchange Communication System Training 

  • Hanen ® Certified, Communicating Together 

  • Hanen ® Never Too Soon for Literacy: Paving the Way to Literacy Success

Special Interests: 

Amanda enjoys implementing our Peepin' Chicks program for late talkers; as well as, working with various speech and language disorders in the preschool population.