We have had another incredibly successful 2015 thanks to the continued support and partnership with MeDiCT along with many other organisations and individuals that have helped us progress our services considerably this year.
We opened our first official clinic in Puerto Vallarta in August and we are offering support and advice to parents as well as postural evaluations and provision of specialist equipment where possible. We received another load of equipment this year which is currently being donated locally to those in need. Thanks to the support from MeDiCT and links with Instituto Nuevo Amanacer and the Centro de Atencion Postural (CAP) in Monterrey we have been able to really start to develop this project. Our team started to receive training and support from the team in Monterrey this year as well as from specialist Marcelle Field who spent three weeks in Puerto Vallarta in January. We ran a pilot with CAP and MeDiCT to produce 6 specially moulded wheelchairs which have made an incredible difference to the lives of the children who received them. In addition we purchased two brand new adjustable modular wheelchairs from the CAP that we are using for our assessments in the clinic.
Catrin’s Penguins have had a very successful year and our swimming group is growing in size every week. We have 6 new swimmers (the majority wheelchair bound) and two have competed recently in special swimming events across Mexico with both winning medals! We also had some more excellent training from Pamela Galloway in March who helped us work with our parents to develop their skills in the water.
We added an additional project this year with another specialist from the UK, Karen Kimberley, who ran various courses in Sensory Integration. This wonderful therapy was well received by all and is an excellent addition to our therapy services. The project was supported by Rotary International who funded us to buy 5 special sensory kit boxes that were donated as part of the training program to various schools and centres.
The Catrin Pickles Scholarship with Keele University Physiotherapy School was another great success this year. Amy and Angharad spent two weeks in Monterrey and two weeks in Puerto Vallarta and had a wonderful time in Mexico working at both sites. We already have 4 very excited students who will be going out to Mexico in 2016 and I am currently working with Keele University to try and turn this placement into a credit bearing one.
We have some big plans for 2016 and no doubt it will be a very busy year. I have been overwhelmed by the support that Therapies Unite and I myself have received this year. Without your support we could not do what we do, so from the bottom of my heart I wanted to thank each and every one of you.
My best wishes for Christmas and every success and happiness for the New Year
Special thanks to Rotary International (Cannock, Burntwood, Walsall Saddlers, Brewood, Marina Puerto Vallarta clubs in particular), International Aid Trust, Specialised Orthotics Services, PhysioNet, Zoggs UK, Sweaty Betty, Keele University Dancesport Society and Catrin’s Fund.