The following blog update comes to us from physical therapist Michaela Patterson at Maria’s Big House of Hope in China…
Show Hope Physical Therapy Update Summer 2019
Physical therapy continues to have a huge impact throughout all of our care centers. Children are developing and achieving new goals as a result of continuous intervention and training. In addition to children making progress, this month we have also seen the addition of a PT support nanny, along with several completed projects.
Some highlights from this month include one little boy who was recently transitioned from an adapted ZipZac chair to a larger self-propelled wheelchair. He is able to propel at the independent level with his right hand and is learning to use his left hand. He loves exploring his room and his nannies love watching him learn a new skill. Another little boy with a visual impairment has been making great gains in independence, strength, and mobility. He is now transitioning to and from sitting at the independent level and beginning to scoot in a seated position. He has also been working on standing and is able to stand with his back at a support for up to two minutes with mod A. My goal for him is to use the blind tactile tiles to begin to freely explore his environment. Finally a little boy with spina bifida is making great progress with sitting balance and is now beginning to trial a ZipZac chair. He sits in it with great head control and is beginning to place his hands on the wheels to propel. We are so excited to watch him progress in independent mobility.
We continue to be very grateful for the help and support of our Chinese PT support nannies. This month we were excited to welcome an additional PT support nanny to our Zhengzhou unit. I was able to complete an initial training with her as well as review all material with the current PT nanny. Once training was complete we were able to go around together and discuss each child. I provided an updated list for them and discussed expectations. I will return to Zhengzhou in 6 weeks to follow up on any questions or additional training needed.
With the shift in children from the Beijing unit, this month we were able to relocate a lot of the PT equipment being stored there and are excited to put it to use throughout our other care centers. New toys were distributed among the units and several children received new gait trainers, walkers and wheelchairs. Additionally we were able to expand the current toy storage system now used in Luoyang and have implemented it in our Zhengzhou care center. We are working to complete the last toy boxes and will distribute them to Nanyang and Jiaozuo once they are complete. It has been highly successful and has encouraged free play in the rooms greatly since implementation. I am looking forward to seeing the effects in each of the other care centers.
It continues to be my greatest joy and honor to serve the children throughout our care centers and see them thrive with ongoing physical therapy intervention, which would not be possible without your ongoing support!