The Ptolemy Reid Rehabilitation Center (PRRC) on Thursday carried out activities in the National Park to reinforce social behaviour and interaction among children who have been diagnosed with autism. The activities were conducted to celebrate Autism Awareness month which is being observed under the theme “Inclusive education for all.”
Speaking with the Big smith News Watch Dr, Mellisa Corlette-Sengwe who is a rehabilitation Officer attached to the PRRC, said that the outdoor setting was chosen as it would allow children with autism to be better able to adjust to different sensory stimulation.
The Doctor noted that in Guyana there are many autism cases that go unnoticed. She noted that autism can be a range of disorders with shared symptoms. Due to these disorders, children who have autism will most likely have trouble communicating which can prove to be a challenge as it pertains to learning. As such, it is important to pay close attention to these children and make learning-friendly, she added.
According to information from the PRRC, autistic children have difficulty reading and processing the feelings of others.
“Some of the emotions that these children have difficulties processing are facial expressions, gestures and body language. Because they cannot easily communicate these traits, oftentimes they come across as unfriendly, rude, or lacking in empathy because they do not fit into social norms.” Dr Sengwe said.
Autism is a neurodevelopmental condition that affects how a person thinks, feels, interacts with others, and experiences their environment. It is a lifelong disability that starts when a person is born and stays with them into old age. Every Autistic person is different to every other. This is why autism is described as a ‘spectrum’.