We are delighted to hear that one of our members, Nathalie Shek, Occupational Therapist, has recently won a Cwm Taf Health Trust Patient Choice award for her Ayres Sensory Integration (ASI) work with one particular family. She received her award at a staff recognition celebration event on 23 June 2017, highlighting examples of best practice within the Board. Well done Nathalie – a great testimony to the power of Ayres' Sensory Integration.
This is what the family she worked with wrote in their nomination:
"Our daughter is 8 years old and has significant complex needs. She is diagnosed with a number of conditions and displays traits of even more conditions. She first saw Nathalie at the age of 6 and by this time we were in, or had previous contact with the following services all attempting to identify and address her varied needs:
- Consultant Paediatrician
- Psychological Medicine and Clinical Neurosciences Cardiff University
- All Wales Genetics Service
- Education Psychology
- Learning Support
- Behaviour Support
- Complex Learning Team
- Disabled Children’s Team
- Post Adoption Social Work team
- Specialist Health Visitor
- Speech and Language Services
Her behaviour had reached a point where it was impossible to manage and it was negatively impacting on family life.
18 months on and at the end of her second treatment block, her rate of development is astonishing and her physical ability and subsequently her self-esteem has improved to a level unrecognisable from before.
Her needs remain complex and family life remains a challenge, however, of all the many interventions she has received over the years, the input she has had from Nathalie has been nothing short of life changing for her as an individual but also us as a family. It remains the only intervention so far that has given us the knowledge and insight to understand some of her behaviours alongside the practical tools and strategies we can employ to improve her quality of life.
Her life and ours as a family has been significantly changed for the better from the sensory processing and integration treatment she has received, and we are confident that this input will make a marked difference to her future outcomes and her ability to function in the adult world when the time comes.
As education professionals, we have directly witnessed the impact her treatment has had on her ability to learn and her educational outcomes. As a result, we are currently lobbying within our professional capacities to see increased awareness within the education sector of the impact sensory processing and integration issues have on children and their ability to access the curriculum.
We have become staunch advocates of sensory integration therapy and feel incredibly privileged to have been one of the few families to have received such treatment for our daughter. We are living proof that sensory integration therapy works and we believe it needs to be recognised accordingly as a vital mainstream service.