Special Needs Program

Intensive Therapeutics is running a 6 week Soccer Program for children with special needs.  The program will focus on practicing individual soccer skills as well as the social skills needed to be a part of a team.  Occupational therapists, familiar with the social and motor challenges relevant to many children with special needs, will oversee the program to be able to adjust to the individual needs of each child.

March 30 – 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM: There will be a free screening/information session for all volunteers who would like to help with the program.  This and all events for this program will happen on the outdoor soccer field at Newmark School in Scotch Plains.  Parents are encouraged to stay for this event, so they understand what their children will expected to do.

The program will then run on six Saturdays. April 6; 13; 27; May 4; 11; 18  (April 20 will be skipped).  All sessions are from 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM.  Parents are not expected to stay during these sessions.

The volunteers will act as peer mentors and be paired with a special needs child.  There is no age restriction for the peer mentors, however they need to be mature enough to perform the duties required for the role.  The March 30th session will be more informative regarding this.  As a frame of reference, it could be reasonable for a mature 10 year old (and up) to help.  The peer mentor should be prepared to attend at least 5 of the 6 program sessions after the screening/information session.

The sports and recreation programs, developed by Intensive Therapeutics, have been partially funded by a grant received by the Borough of Fanwood, NJ from the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs: Recreational Opportunities for Individuals with Disabilities (ROID) to help bring innovative, community-based recreational programs to children with special needs. The support of Mayor Mahr and the Borough of Fanwood has helped us create a model of programming that can be replicated in other municipalities throughout New Jersey.

Newmark K-8 School and Newmark High School are state-approved, private not-for-profit schools in Scotch Plains, NJ, serving children living with autism spectrum disorders, mood disorders, anxiety disorders, attention issues and other developmental disabilities. Dr. Regina M. Peter and Cynthia Allman serve as the Co-Executive Directors of Newmark Schools.  The school is located at 1000 Cellar Ave, Scotch Plains.

Intensive Therapeutics, located at 274 South Avenue, Fanwood, NJ, is a non-profit, charitable, 501c3, organization that provides group and individual, occupational, speech and physical therapy services to children with special needs.  Scott Matthews is the Executive Director.

Daniel Cartwright is an Occupational Therapy Aide, a former college soccer player, and a former high school soccer coach who works for Intensive Therapeutics.  He will run the program.

If you'd like to register your child as a peer mentor for this program, the link will be available here soon.

If you have any additional questions about this program, please contact President@SPFSoccer.com.