Special Kids NYC: What We Do

Are you raising a child with special needs or learning disabilities in New York City? Do you need help finding evaluations, doctors, therapists, or schools for your child? Feeling overwhelmed and unsure where to start?  

We know how overwhelming (and frightening) it can be to find out your child may have developmental delays or special needs. We have been there. We can help.

Special Kids NYC is a consulting service designed for NYC parents of children with special needs (everything from developmental delays to neurological disorders to mental health issues). We offer private consultations with parents where we provide customized, detailed, specific information and instructions about next steps to take. We answer any and all questions, including the following:

  • What are the signs my child may have a developmental delay or special needs?
  • How do I get my child evaluated by a doctor? Which doctors do you recommend?
  • What will happen if my child receives a diagnosis? Where can I get more information about the diagnosis (such as speech delay, sensory processing disorder, ADD/ADHD, anxiety/OCD, or autism spectrum disorder)?
  • How much do I “disclose” about my child’s diagnosis or condition to others?
  • How do I find the best therapists for my child? What will these therapies cost?
  • What is the most appropriate school for my child? How can I get Board of Ed reimbursement?
  • What are the best after-school activities, summer camps, birthday party venues, etc. for NYC kids with special needs?
  • How will my family and I cope with all of this? Where can I find a support group, either in person or online?

Ask us anything and everything. We have the answers–and the support–that you need. You are not alone.

Harvard graduate Joanna Dreifus founded Special Kids NYC in 2012. After graduating college, Joanna earned her master’s degree in public health from Columbia University. She has worked at The New York Community Trust evaluating and providing grants to NYC programs for people with special needs.  She serves on the board of YAI-NYL Lifestart and the Manhattan Star Academy, and is a member of the Family Advisory Council of New York Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center. Joanna has lived in New York City since 1994, and is the proud mother of an 11-year-old girl and 8-year-old boy. Her own journey as a parent navigating the world of special needs and learning disabilities has helped inform her experiences about raising children in New York City.

Contact Special Kids NYC  for more information or to schedule a consultation.   Please leave us your complete name and phone number.   All inquiries are answered within 2 business days. We offer in-person consultations in NYC, or phone consultations for those residing outside of NYC.  

DISCLAIMER: Special Kids NYC provides helpful information for parents of children with special needs. This information is for educational purposes only, and is not intended for use in diagnosis or treatment of particular delays or disorders. For specific medical advice about your own child, you should consult licensed physicians and other certified health professionals.

2 thoughts on “Special Kids NYC: What We Do

  1. This is a wonderful idea and I believe very much needed. Unfortunately some of the advisors out there are not neutral experts but self serving in one way or another. This is something I have thought of doing at one time or another (perhaps when I retire)? Let me know if I can be of any help. Would love to hear all about it!

  2. I have known Joanna since age 11. Since then she has helped me with many things! Coincidentally, my 6 year old daughter also has special needs. We do not live in the city, but in the beginning of our journey I will never forget the comfort, advice and strength that she role modeled for me. I will never forget the day that I called her after our visit to an aggressive, dismissive neurologist. Joanna called me back within 5 minutes. She was the only person who seemed to be able to calm my husband and I down, make me stop crying, make us aware of our options, educate us regarding the range of dr’s styles. Everyone with a child with special needs( even if they think they are doing everything perfectly) would be lucy to have Joanna work with them. She is bright, efficient, organized and she’ll also make you laugh…which is important! LC

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