OCHO has developed a partnership with Atima’s school initiative for children with developmental disabilities, Abriendo Puertas. The program is staffed voluntarily by teachers from the community and meets daily in the late afternoon to provide special educational services and parent support services to 20-30 children with medical problems that include cerebral palsy, developmental delay, Down Syndrome, hydrocephalus and spina bifida. These children typically do not receive any other educational services. What began as a donation of equipment such as walkers and wheelchairs has evolved into a full diagnostic evaluation and treatment program for children with developmental disabilities in the community.
A team of professionals with expertise in working with children with developmental disabilities has joined OCHO to provide services to these children and their families. The program has been developed by occupational therapists, special educators ,developmental pediatricians and speech and language therapy. Children in the community receive diagnostic evaluations and are provided with therapeutic equipment and intervention instructions. Children in outlying regions receive direct home intervention through our outreach program.
Parents, teachers and nurses are taught how to maintain interventions such as proper positioning and feeding techniques and splinting for children with spasticity from cerebral palsy. A teacher and nurse from Atima have been selected this year to receive training in the Baltimore area. The entire cost of the training will be subsidized by OCHO. In addition, OCHO has conducted in-services to community physicians and midwives on newborn resuscitation to try to prevent disabilities caused by complicated deliveries.
OCHO has committed to raising $120,000 in addition to $30,000 pledged by Atima local government to build a combined special education and rehabilitation center that will be the only facility of its kind in Honduras. Funds for this project will be raised by private donations and OCHO is seeking grant funding to support this project as well.
Would you like to join the OCHO team by sharing your skills and services?
Contact the OCHO Board of Directors:
P.O Box 26162
Baltimore, MD 21210