Rehabilitation & Therapy Center at HaitiChildren
campus in Williamson, Haiti
The Center was built in 2011 and funded for 3 years by the Anschutz Foundation. We serve 65 of the abandoned children living at our permanent residence. In the beginning of 2015 we opened service to the 3 surrounding villages and now care for the disabled children in those villages on an outpatient basis. There is no other option for these children. HaitiChidlren is one of the few organizations in Haiti that actively accepts children with disabilities into a permanent home.
This care is free to the village children as it is in an area of extreme poverty. Our staff includes 5 physical therapy technicians, a Certified Physical Therapist and ongoing consultation from HaitiChildren Advisory Board Member Bill Fabrocini, International Sport Performance Trainer and former Director of the Aspen Club Sports Performance Program and Julie Taylor, PT, ATP. On campus we have 2 medical clinics with fulltime Physicians and nurses who work closely with the Therapy Center Team. We also partner with Mt. Sinai Psychiatric department and are able to treat children with psychiatric issues such as post-traumatic stress disorder (almost all of the children who are placed with us have PTSD due to being abandoned or orphaned), depression, autism or degenerated IQ due to malnutrition.
The therapy center serves our 65 disabled children. Many of the disabled children who were immobile when they came to HaitiChildren are now using wheelchairs, walkers or walking without aid. Physical therapy is generally required for those with permanent disabilities and for those who are suffering from crippling diseases such as cerebral palsy. This level of physical therapy we offer free of charge to the poorest of the poor abandoned children, has helped hundreds of severely disabled children to function optimally within the limitations of their condition by building on the residual capabilities of their bodies.
This center is one of the most important aspects of these children’s lives. They are trying so hard every day to do just a little more and reach their goal. They are challenged heroes. They were all left to die alone. They have overcome that obstacle and have found a permanent home. Many are in school and will one day attend university. Please help us keep this center open so their goals aren’t just a dream.
Meet two of our children…
Martin Malebranche. Age 16, his condition is hydrocephalus, psychomotor retardation, weakness of the lower limbs, and flat feet with light eversion. Treatment and Care: Strengthening the lower limbs, training to walk with the help of graduated weight, stimulation of hip flexion by picking up cones on the ground. Status: Good tone and evolution of walking and is developing a better ability of static and dynamic balance. Goal: Continue to work on static and dynamic balance by walking with support.
Bien-aimé Benjamin. Age 7, his condition is cerebral palsy, muscular atrophy, contracture of the joint axes and aphasia. Treatment and Care: Bien-aime’s therapy includes muscle strengthening and development of joint axis through exercise and structured activity. Status: He is making good strides in developing good tone and evolution (movement) of walking and learning the vertical position. Goal: We will continue to work on the success of his vertical positioning in all of his activities and treatment.
Funding Needed to Hire Additional Therapist
We need to hire an additional Physical Therapist for our disabled children. Our Rehabilitation & Therapy Center has recently opened its doors to the Williamson Community. This has increased the workload for our 6 person staff and we need to hire an additional certified Physical Therapist. The Center is open 6 days per week and currently offers therapy to our 65 disabled children along with several children from the local community. The fundraising goal total is $12,000 (or $1,000 per month).
Be sure to designate “Special Fund Additional Physical Therapist Salary.”