Between 12 - 16 August 2018, Ohana organized a workshop, consultations and seating clinic with professor and occupational therapist Eva Ma. Therapists, parents and children from in and around Yogyakarta were invited to come and learn about different exercises that can help (their) children with daily activities and their growth, but also people from very far away joined some of the activities. This shows the need for more attention for these topics and the lack of information in Indonesia. The topics that Eva Ma focused on the most were nutrition, physical exercises and new helping aids for children and adults.
The workshop “Physical and Nutrional Management for Children with complex Medical Needs” attracted people from various backgrounds. Therapists joined, parents with their children came in caring their child in front of them or pushing a wheelchair (with shiny lights in the front wheels) that was provided to them earlier by Ohana.
During the workshop Eva Ma talked about different exercises regarding sitting, eating and transfers. The audience was challenged to try themselves to feel which muscles work in their own body. If you can feel in your own body where you should focus on, it is easier to help someone with a certain movement. The exercises were meant for helping the children, but also for the parents: the emphasis was also on the caregiver’s body that should make movements that keep their body healthy.
Consultations (August 13 & 14th
On Monday, Ohana started with the consultations at the accessible Ohana office in the north of Yogyakarta. The parents could come in with their child to ask specific questions to Eva Ma within the hour appointed to them.
In Indonesia, therapists don’t always have access to the up-to-date knowledge regarding their profession as occupational or physiotherapist. Therefore, Eva Ma could provide them as well as the parents the necessary knowledge that could help their child in his/her development. During the session Eva Ma asks the parents about the exercises they do at home, about the helping aids that are available and made use of and tries to send them home with new things to practice with. All parents and therapist were eager to learn and the information provided to them was sometimes new, and therefore very important.
The children that joined the consulations vary in age from four to thirteen and come in with or without their brothers and sisters. This made it busy and fun days.
Seating Clinic (August 15 & 16)
In the morning of the 15th, more than twenty people gathered to join the seating clinic with Eva Ma. Many people that showed up were assigned a new wheelchair that fits their body and needs. The Ohana office has a big garage were wheelchairs and other helping aids are waiting to be assigned a new user.
Adults as well as children received a new wheelchair, athletes that join the Asian Games in 2020 came by to find a wheelchair which allows them have better straining in their sport and some people got their own wheelchair adjusted. The Seating Clinics as well as the consultations were busy days because many people show up that need this form of help. Therefore we are very grateful that Eva Ma was able to come by for this period of time. In 2019 she will visit again.