The ASSA team had the opportunity to collaborate, organise and plan the International Symposium on Early Intervention and Family Centered Services: Bridging the Gap to Participation and Inclusion for Children with Disabilities with Manipal College of Health Professions in association with Shastri Indo-Canadian institute, University of Toronto, McGill University, and ASSA. The symposium saw enthusiastic endorsement with 158 online and 46 in person participants.
The guest of honour was Mr Sankara Raman, the secretary of Amar Seva Sangam. Marie Brien,MSc PT, associate director of research and capacity building; Franzina Coutinho, PhD, OT Director of Research at ASSA, Dr.Annette Majnemer, Vice-Dean, Professor School of Physical and Occupational Therapy, McGill University and Dr. Dinesh Krishna, Director of Strategy for Enabling Inclusion Programme at ASSA, delivered the keynote addresses for the themes Family Centered Care for Children with Disabilities and Their Families, Caregiver Coaching Approaches, Partnering with Parents for Participation and Research and Community Based Family Centered Services respectively.
The symposium was inaguragted by Dr. G Arun Maiyam Dean of Dr. Padmaraj Hegde, Dean Kasturba Medical College, Dr.Kotegar, Director of International Collaborations and Mr.Sankara Raman Srinivsan, Secetary of Amar Seva Sangam.
Feedback from the symposium revealed that it was a great learning opportunity and the discussions during the plenary panel discussions were very thought-provoking.
Over the next few weeks, we will be sharing blogs which will highlight some of the learnings from the symposium.
In addition to the symposium, meeting with Amar Seva Sangam team and the faculty at MAHE including the Dean of MAHE’s College of Health Proffesionals will lead to further collaborations in research, capacity building and student / faculty exchanges.
One of the primary themes for the symposium :
International Symposium on Early Intervention and Family Centered Services: Bridging the Gap to Participation and Inclusion for Children with Disabilities was Coaching and provision of family centred services. Senior Researcher, Annette Majnemer provided insight on parent oriented research and provided tips to professionals and students alike on how to engage parents as valuable stakeholders and encourage their involvement in service provision.
Talks from Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Amar Seva Sangam, McGill and the University of Toronto, all highlighted the significance of coaching as an effective complement to service provision in service poor settings, given the large ratio of population to service providers. Rehabilitation Coaching might be a stop gap to service provision in settings that might lack quality care, have long travel times for service or due to unavailable in person therapy like during COVID-19. The symposium had good attendance both locally and internationally. The hybrid model served to reach a larger audience for this important topic of discussion.