Coming from far and wide for a week to remember together!

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It’s a week that is filled with intensity, fun, laughter, and memorable moments. Coming from thousands of kilometers away, families from all over remote parts of WA arrived for our first Regional Intensive Therapy Program of the year.

The week began with what our staff call a morning huddle or in translation, a briefing on the events to be expected throughout the week. While the daily huddle preps the therapist for the day, you could also consider it as a pre-game pump up to build the excitement for the day, this includes sharing experiences from the day before. One of the senior therapists mentioned to the group that she asked the child she was working with what his favourite part of the day was, with an enthusiastic reply he said, “All of it!” Once the huddle broke, the excitement began, and the therapist dispersed to welcome each parent and child that walked through the gate.

Every day throughout the week, each child worked with the therapy team on their very own individualised program so they can reach their goals. The word “intensive” in intensive therapy doesn’t come without having a bundle of fun. Whether it’s taking turns on the trampoline in the playground, playing dress-up in the playroom, or celebrating with cake for one of the girl’s birthdays, the week is riddled with smiles, laughter and newfound friendships. 

Regional week is for the whole family! While the kids are busy, the parents have sometime for themselves as well as time with the therapists to learn more about strategies they can use independently at home. To start the week, parents were welcomed with a coffee morning to meet the other families and share their experiences raising a child on the Autism spectrum in a remote community. Later in the day and throughout the rest of the week, they attended sessions to receive resources and tips they can take home for the whole family. For the dads, there was also a morning BBQ and catch-up where the kids played, and the dads chatted. Here they are: 

The end of the week means celebrations! At the certificate ceremony, each child is awarded a certificate from their therapist, recognising the milestones and goals they achieved throughout the week. Each therapist takes a moment to share a story or an achievement from the week. Each child accepting holding up their certificates with pride and huge smiles! To wrap up the week, the families and team from the Association, headed to the park for a picnic to say the final goodbyes.

Some travel by plane, some by car but each regional family travels extensive lengths to attend the Intensive Therapy Program. The program is an opportunity for each child to participate in intensive therapy, the family to receive resources and tips to take home all while having a wonderful time in Perth! One of the regional dads, Geoff noted, “it helps us understand Lucy’s world”.

The children start the week with goals to work towards throughout the week and families can continue to receive ongoing support from their therapists via Teletherapy and are supported to implement their goals and use the new resources and tips at home and school.

We look forward to seeing our Regional families for the next Regional Intensive Therapy Week in July!

To find out more about the week, click here or contact our Regional Team on regionaltherapy@autism.org.au  or call us on 1800 636 427.

 

 

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