This is Lorrie and Erin (OT practitioners) coming to you live from ABI, a government-run residential facility located in Guatemala City, near the airport. Today was our third day of service at this site including the Annex, a day program for some of ABI's residents. We spent the majority of our day at the Annex, treating residents with a wide variety of physical and sensory needs. Some of our highlights of the day include:
- Introducing an iPad to a resident with spastic CP, who appears to be very intelligent however lacks the physical and verbal skills to interact with his environment. This individual appeared to love the iPad, and we are very hopeful that it will help improve his ability to communicate with others and challenge his mind. We are hopeful that our recommendations for an iPad will help secure one for him in the future!
- Engaging a child with a burned, contracted upper extremity in purposeful reaching activities with his affected arm, which he normally does not use. It was difficult to find something that motivated him, but grasping handfuls of beans seemed to do the trick!
- Having a teenager--who has only ever used a bottle--eat flan from a spoon for the first time. This has been an undertaking a year in the making, needless to say everyone was very excited at this major development!
- Teaching the staff at the Annex how to better utilize their sensory integration room, as well as safe feeding and positioning strategies. The staff were very receptive to our suggestions.
- Working on Spanish letter/number discrimination, PECS, and safe swallowing strategies for some of the residents with our talented speech therapist.