Meet Drea Strompf, PLAY Project Consultant for ESCC and our spotlight for the month of February! Drea is a deeply valued and seasoned staff member. She was born and raised in Fresno, CA and had always dreamed of living somewhere on the coast, but her family weighed stronger and she made Fresno her home. After graduating Clovis West High School in 1999, she had the opportunity to put her toes in the sand and attended school, and worked, in Santa Barbara for four years. Once she obtained her Bachelor’s degree from UCSB in Psychology, she went on to become certified at the Autism Treatment Center of America in Massachusetts. While working in Massachusetts, she lived in upstate New York - where she met her husband. After two great years in New York, they moved back to Fresno where they would later start a family. Drea enjoys raising her two children in her hometown near her parents and sister, all which help greatly.
Drea loves spending time with her family and friends, and you will never see her sitting around as her crazy life keeps her on her toes. Between driving kids to activities or hanging out with friends and family, she stays very busy. Even though it can be chaotic she wouldn’t want it any other way. Drea loves high fitness and spends her spare time participating in fun fitness classes that incorporate interval training with fun, current music. Drea also enjoys going to the lake with her family and her 10-month-old Golden Retriever. They love watching their dog swim after sticks and run around in the open air.
Drea has been working for ESCC since April 2007 and started as a PLAY Project Tutor. The PLAY Project is an in-home parent education program which teaches the parents how to use DIR/Floortime (Developmental, Individual Difference, Relationship-based) with their children. Two years later, Drea was certified as a PLAY Project Consultant, and later obtained her certification as a PLAY Project Supervisor in May 2015 for PLAY. She is currently enrolled in a program called Teaching PLAY, and after completion, she will be certified to train early intervention and special education teachers and other school staff on how to use PLAY techniques in school for the children.
Drea’s passion of helping children with special needs began in elementary school. She spent many of her recesses helping the special education classrooms. In college she volunteered to work with a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), and that led her into the field of autism. She is passionate about helping, teaching and educating parents on how to be their child’s best play partner. With a positive attitude and a passion for autism and other special needs, she embraces each day and family with a smile.
Drea loves to play and teach parents how to connect with their child. It’s pure delight when she hears parents say, “He’s never said that before,” or “She’s never done that before!” It’s the joy she sees on parents’ faces when they begin to see their child from a different angle, and embrace the whole child. She loves her job and lighting up people’s lives with PLAY Play is a child’s number one job, and she loves helping parents find ways to build deeper relationships with their child while understanding their child’s capabilities, sensory motor profile and functioning.
“Drea and the PLAY Program have been the centerpiece for our presence in the Fresno area for a long time. Drea’s warm personality and dedication to supporting families has allowed us to remain visible in the community and set the stage for a successful launch of our Autism Behavior Intervention program.” – Scott Webb, Executive Director