Monday, June 11, 2007

Another PT camp begins!

Our second therapy team this year has arrived in Hunan, and they are off to a great start. We are very grateful to Angie, who flew all the way to China for us to help with OT evaluations, and to Colleen, who is a specialist on children's early intervention, and a big thanks to Dr. Zhang from Anhui Children's who is evaluating the kids for physical therapy. Everyone is very knowledgable in their own field and has wonderful ideas on how to help the children. Both Tingting and Stephanie (two great LWB facilitators) are in Hunan as well to help the camp run smoothly.

The team set up in the PT room of the orphanage, a bright and spacious area with lots of mats in one corner and all sorts of equipment and toys. The orphanage gave them a name list of their children with special needs, and the assessments began. On the first day, they were able to evaluate five children in the morning and 4 in the afternoon. Dr. Zhang, Angie, and Colleen spent time with each child, taking notes and discussing with each other the best exercises and treatment for the kids. The orphanage doctor, nurses and aunties were all there as well, listening carefully and taking notes. Dr. Zhang gave lots of wonderful advice on working with the children's large motor skills, and Angie gave tips on small motor skills such as finger motion and eye contact. Colleen observed the kids' reactions, such as how they recognized shapes and colors, and their language skills. Together they gave a lot of specific ideas on what toys and games would be good for each child's specific areas of concern, and the aunties would say "oh...that is good....write it down!"

The team wasted no time today, evaluating kids without a break and spending time with each child to come up with lots of ways for them to reach their full potential. Each child will be given a personalized photo book with suggestions and exercises designed specifically for them.

More news from Hunan tomorrow!