Maria is a fully registered Speech Therapist under the Allied Health Professions Council (AHPC). She is a member of Speech and Language Therapists in Singapore (SALTS) and New Zealand Speech-language Therapists’ Association (NZSTA). She has graduated from the University of the Philippines, Manila. Maria has experienced working in a private setting in the Philippines for almost 3 years and in KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital (KKH) for 10 years. She was a Principal Speech Therapist in KKH and also the Main Clinical Education in-charge.
Maria is passionate in working with young children and their families. Her dedication and commitment in working with them stem from her belief that these families are able to find meaning as they overcome challenges with the support given. Maria provides assessment and management for speech and language cases. She is a creative and resourceful therapist who sees opportunities in difficult situations. She has run different language groups and has structured the program of these groups to ensure that learning is maximized in an enjoyable experience. She has also conducted parent training programs (Hanen It Takes Two to Talk) where she was able to work closely with the parents and caregivers, understand their challenges, brainstorm and problem solve together with them. Maria strongly believes in the power that the collaboration of the parents and caregivers with the therapists has. She develops detailed home program and provides individual caregiver training as well. As a therapist who have witnessed and have been a part of families’ challenging journey, Maria believes that children have the ability to reach their maximum potential with the collaboration of the parents and therapists. Moreover, she is a strong believer that these challenges are able to bring out the best in the family as well.
Maria also has a strong passion and dedication in teaching and imparting knowledge. She has trained undergraduate and Master’s students from local and international universities. She has also trained and developed practicing speech therapists to ensure basic competencies and professional development. As a key leader for clinical education in KKH, she led the team in innovating clinical education and designing the curriculum for training. She has provided lectures and talks about speech and language to parents, teachers at childcare centres, other professionals. In 2013, Maria volunteered with Singapore International Foundation to impart speech therapy knowledge to a group of teachers in Medan, Indonesia. She created lectures and training materials and incorporated practical components during the workshop, ensuring that it was suitable and engaging for the audience. Her passion and dedication in clinical education come from knowing that there is a great need for this profession to serve those who are in need and to meet the demands of children with special needs. Maria strongly believes that speech therapy is not just a profession but a service. She believes that these children and their families not only need the techniques or strategies but that there is more to therapy that can provide the support that would empower families.
Maria is trained in:
- Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) Level 1 &2 Training
- It Takes Two to Talk® The Hanen Program ® for Parents
- More Than Words® The Hanen Program® for Parents of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Introduction to Prompt
- DIR Floortime