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Blissymbolics Communication Institute - Canada

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Sherly Thankappan, B. Ed. - Teacher and Director

Teacher Specializing in Education for Persons with Disabilities

Picture of Sherly T. with a studentSherly has been a teacher for 11 year and is a life-long learner. Over the past two years, she has immersed herself in Bliss and AAC pedagogy. She enjoys new challenges and during the pilot project, she learned to manage and support a group of facilitators who work with our students.

Sherly travels to the homes of our students to work with them in addition to providing support to facilitators and students at our office and through our virtual classroom.

Cathy Nave - Resource Development Coordinator

Cathy has a wide range of experiences in the business and volunteering world. Over the last 5 years she has volunteered within a school environment to organize and participate in several fund raising events. She also has several years' project management experience within the financial services sector and believes she can make best use of her business experience and volunteer experience to help raise funds and raise awareness of Blissymbolics Communications Institute – Canada.

She currently works for Blissymbolics Communication Institute – Canada as a Resource Development Coordinator to create greater recognition of the organization and the wonderful services they provide to non-speaking individuals with Cerebral Palsy.

Shirley McNaughton, C.M., Ph. D. - Volunteer Consultant

Shirley possesses the Order of Canada and has been dedicated to Bliss since 1971. Her dedication to literacy for the non-speaking is unsurpassed and she continues to be source of inspiration despite retiring

Photo of Shirley McNaughton

Shirley is a special educator who has been teaching - first children, then adults - persons with cerebral palsy since 1968. In 1971, she and her interdisciplinary team discovered Blissymbolics. Shirley and her team pioneered the use of Blissymbolics in the communication program of children who were non-speaking.

The program was implemented in various countries around the world and in 1975 Blissymbolics Communication International was founded. Additionally, Shirley was the founding president of the International Society for Augmentative and Alternative Communication and received the Order of Canada in 1989 for her work with persons with disabilities.

Since retiring from her role as the Executive Director of Blissymbolics Communication International in 1989, Shirley continues to volunteer. She currently supports the literacy and communication endeavours of adults who use Bliss as well as assisting Bliss Alumni to refine their use of English print.

Although retired, Shirley was the founding member of the Board of Directors for the Blissymbolics Learning Centre in 2001 and from 2002-2006, she guided the Centre's Blissymbolics and Literacy Program. In 2007, she wrote an online instructional program: Bliss 101. Recently, she has directed two projects related to Blissymbolics and supported by the Ontario Federation for Cerebral Palsy. The most recent project provides electronic instructional support to Bliss-users and alumni in Southern Ontario.

News & Events

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Join us October 28th, 2010 for the Friends of Bliss! Click here for more information.


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Thanks to
Ontario Trillium Foundation Logo OFCP logo for their ongoing support.