The Children’s Rehabilitation Program, the Integrated Preschool and the Special Education Programs are all experiencing strong demand. One Monday in February there were 153 children receiving services in our two Lilongwe locations!
The growing demand is putting pressure on our space and our funding. We would benefit from a 3rd building and funding to hire a Special Education Teacher. This strong interest reinforces the importance parents and children place on education. The program prepares children with physical, learning, hearing and behaviour challenges to attend school. It is also critical for older children who are not able to attend school but still want to learn.
A new house is under construction two doors from the Preschool building and every time I walk past I ask God to give us a building just like that one! It is just the right size and is in the perfect location!!!
Changes for the Children’s Rehabilitation Program!
The Mgwangwa Outreach Clinic (our 6th) will soon be operational! We are so excited that 2 of our Rehabilitation Technicians have passed their motorcycle tests and have temporary licenses. They will get official licenses in March and once insured the motorcycle and riders will be ready to go. The road to Mgwangwa is quite bad with the heavy rain but we hope to start services by April or early May.
Sylvester started working with us part time as an Occupational Therapist in February. He is working on his Masters in Disability Issues in Cape Town but will work 3 mornings a week with COBT when he is in Lilongwe. He is currently learning what the children need in order to design the best therapy solutions.
We need to recruit a 3rd Rehabilitation Technician as we said goodbye to Chifundo at the end of December. He has moved to Ntcheu to start a new job with another organization working with people with disabilities.
On March 3rd the first ever group of Doctor of Physiotherapy students from the University of North Texas will arrive for their 1 month internship.
Parent Workshops set for April!
We are very thankful to Heaven Sent Ministries for funding the Parent Workshops this year. Hopefully we will be able to give parents handouts this year written in Chichewa that will help them remember what they have been taught.
The Nutrition Program gets a lift!
In February we hired our Nutritionist, Nellie. She will assess the children and provide the malnourished kids with nutritious porridge and Chiponde. We hope she will be able to connect with the Area 25 Health Centre to obtain assistance in taking measurements and to secure free Chiponde for the most malnourished children. This will be a great help as there are often over 30 and sometimes as many as 60 kids that need to be assessed in one day.
Thanks to the GIZ Gap Year Volunteer Program for providing Mary and Elina with new desks in January! Our administrative office looks very official now.