Recently we had the opportunity to attend the Wisconsin Innovation Awards as a finalist. We were very honored to have been nominated and then selected as a finalist. Although not the winner in our category, I felt great being there representing Stimmi.
You see, I think Stimmi is incredibly innovative. Born out a real need, Deb had the vision to know that if she was looking for and not finding a tool like Stimmi, other likeminded parents were as well. She knew that families, caregivers and people affected by autism or disabilities needed this.
The initial concept was written by Deb on the outside of manila folders in pen and ink. I took this and outlined a rough concept map of the web product. While sitting at her table, I would watch Evan pace. “Is he upset?” I asked,  only to learn that this relaxed him. He would ask Deb for things and I could not understand what he wanted until she explained. For example, “Doctor “meant he wanted to listen to a song that started with the word, not that he was sick.

Empowering Caregivers
Luckily, I was sitting next to Evan’s interpreter. Next to the one person who knew exactly what he wanted or needed. What WOULD happen to Evan if she could no longer do this? The Ah- ha moment struck. The Voice library was created from this moment. Imagine creating a video guide to explain someone’s language, mood or behaviors. Imaging SHOWING someone how to provide intricate cares such as loading a feeding pump, changing a colostomy bag or taking care of a wound. We could take existing technology and use it in new and exciting ways. Caregivers would be empowered, confusion and errors reduced.

Schoolteachers, respite care workers, aides, family members and others could now watch videos and understand HOW to interact and help. The videos can be used as a training tool.

Eliminate Communication Gaps
We thought about communication. How often it can fail or how one person would not know what the others were doing? How did therapists communicate between school and private therapy? How were behaviors detected?From this came the messaging center for which the phone apps were specifically designed.

So, I am proud of our nomination and finalist status. It means that others saw our vision. We are honored and humbled to be a part of the businesses and organizations there that night.
We will continue to innovate and improve with the goal of helping some of our most vulnerable members of society be stronger, healthier, understood and empowered.