Nicaragua – June 2014
After learning of the needs in Nicaragua, BRIGHT returned with its largest team to Managua. This team included two music therapists, one recreational therapist, one Physical Therapist, a Physical Therapist Trainee, A Speech/Language Pathologist, a professional photographer, a researcher, a translator/Special needs advocate/retired teacher, and two teens who are along for the ride and excited to love on children.
Our trip began at New Life Nicaragua Orphanage, where we were able to implement therapy with these 20 or so children, and spend a few hours talking to the director about recommendations. All orphanage staff were trained on infant massage as well. The next three days were spent at Tesoros de Dios School. Children with various disabilities attend this school part time (due to the high enrollment numbers) so we were able to work in a variety of ways. They have an early intervention classroom, two Physical Therapists on staff, as well as horse therapy. The school selected children that needed attention in the various areas we addressed (speech, fine motor, gross motor, special education, etc). This was truly a wonderful experience.
Lastly, we partnered with UNIDOS Nicaragua to serve with the poorest of the poor children in Los Cedros, Nicaragua. In the morning, we created a field day with nine different stations working on listening, gross motor exercises, fine motor exercises, impulse control, team work, etc. The afternoon included a presentation to the teachers, and then a second presentation to parents that were interested in learning more. It was an exhausting week, but so rewarding!