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Puppets Support Telemental Health for Children

Greeny and Dr. Darleen work with children online to help them through the Coronovirus pandemic.

As children are forced to stay home during the Coronavirus pandemic, the nonprofit Orchard Human Services, Inc. is innovating new ways to reach children through online counseling and intervention services, called Telemental Health. Orchard’s program director, Dr. Darleen Claire Wodzenski, is a Clinical Mental Health Counselor and Exceptional Student Educator who brings piano, puppets, and play into the online space.

Orchard has a menu of supportive services to help children … and their parents … through these tough times. Orchard’s telemental health and online intervention services support children with Autism, ADD/ADHD, Learning Problems, Attachment Disorder, and Mental Health issues.

When asked how the telemental health sessions are going, Dr. Darleen responded “Much better than we had even hoped.” We get to play the piano, sing songs, do puppetry, and have fun with the children while we discuss the serious things going on. Children know about the Coronavirus; five-year-olds openly discuss how the Coronavirus is the reason they are not in school. Having this online telemental health platform is a wonderful way to continue to serve clients who were already receiving services … and has opened the door to many new children who are struggling with online school and being at home twenty-four hours each day of the week.

Orchard works with children and parents to come up with behavior and learning challenges to support positive behavior of children. “We create a challenge and a desired celebration. For example, a child might agree to do twenty math problems every day at nine am for five days in a row. Then the child selects a celebration … perhaps an online party with punch balloons, lollipops, or a new game. Our nonprofit ships the celebration items to the parent at home. In this way, we are able to motivate and provide incentive to our clients to help them stay on track.”

Want to learn more about Orchard’s online telemental health services? Visit them here.

Orchard works with many insurance companies to help children access services over the internet – so they stay safe at home during the pandemic. Some of the insurances Orchard accepts include AETNA, CIGNA, Tricare, Caresource, and United Health Care.

Darleen Claire Wodzenski, MS ESE, MA CMHC, PhD Psychology of Orchard Human Services, Inc. and PNE Institute, LLC is leading the way in providing high quality and effective telemental health and behavioral and developmental intervention services. Contact her at 770-686-0894.