ENWIN and JMCC Join Forces to help Local Families

April 15, 2021

Windsor, ON: ENWIN Utilities Ltd. and the John McGivney Children’s Centre (JMCC) are proud of a new partnership that supports Windsor families from many cultural and linguistic backgrounds, whose children receive services at the Centre – Families like the AlHariri family, whose three daughters receive Speech and Language services, due to hearing loss identified through the Infant Hearing Program. 

PHOTO: JMCC CEO Jessica Sartori (left) with interpreter Mozayan Diab (second left) members of the AlHariri family and Speech Language Pathologist Agapi Varacalli (right).

Two of the AlHariri girls have received cochlear implants and two continue to receive services as their communication skills grow. Since English is not the family’s language of origin, an interpreter joins the family and their Speech Language Pathologist for therapy to ensure everyone is able to fully understand, participate and reap the benefits of the sessions. This year, ENWIN will be supporting that effort – for the AlHariri family and others like them.

“Windsor-Essex is a very diverse community, made up of individuals who speak a wide variety of languages,” explains ENWIN Manager of Corporate Communications Barbara Peirce Marshall, who manages the company’s Community Support portfolio. “Translation services are essential to JMCC’s work, and we are honoured to be able to enrich the lives of children and youth with special needs and help them to reach their full potential.”

Local diversity is reflected in the families who receive services at JMCC. As a Centre committed to being family-centred, it is crucial for family members and caregivers of JMCC clients to be able to understand and actively participate in their child’s therapy services.

“I have had the privilege of working with interpreters in my sessions for several years now,” says Agapi Varacalli, Speech & Language Pathologist, JMCC. “The therapy that I provide for kids with hearing loss is based on principles that focus on guiding and coaching parents. I guide and coach parents to use the strategies that have been proven to be effective during all of their child’s waking hours, in order to maximize the use of the hearing technology and see the most gains in their child’s communication skills.”

For families who do not speak English, therapy can be an enormous challenge. The interpreters Varacalli has worked with have been instrumental in ensuring that families understand the information and strategies that they discuss. They also allow her to gain a better understanding of what the child is doing at home, in their first language.

“I honestly could not do my job without them,” said Varacalli. “I am so grateful that our partnership with ENWIN helps to support access to interpreters for our therapy sessions.”

The AlHariri family is just one of the many families who rely on translation services during their JMCC therapy sessions. Throughout the past year, the need for translation services at JMCC has doubled and the Centre has also seen a significant rise in the costs associated with providing this essential service to families.

“At JMCC we are dedicated to providing family-centred services and to helping grow the abilities of every child,” says Jessica Sartori, CEO, JMCC. “Thanks to the support from ENWIN, we will be able to continue to provide translation services to families who need it, to ensure that the whole family is able to fully understand and participate in therapy, which is crucial to ensuring that each and every child and family we serve is reaching their full potential.”

“We are extremely grateful to ENWIN for their continued support of our Centre and the work that we do. We couldn’t do what we do without the support of donors and partners like ENWIN.” 

“The services JMCC offers children with special needs are unparalleled in our community,” said Peirce Marshall. “It is truly a privilege to support this work.”