Jeff and Iris Ameen brought their 8 yr old daughter Lara to the August class from California. Both are Chiropractors and had a clinical as well as personal interest in Conductive Education. They are very involved parents and had tried many alternate methods of trying to help Lara such as Botox injections, Electrical Stimulation, Myo Cranial Massage as well as additional private Physiotherapy.
Before Lara came to Ability Camp she attended school in a wheelchair even though she was able to use a walker comfortably and had tried quad canes. During her stay here the wheelchair and the walker were taken back to California and Lara began to use her canes full time.
Jeff and Iris took turns staying with Lara for the five weeks allowing them to miss as little work as possible. During the fourth week both parents were here at the same time and on the Friday they sat in to view the program. "Everything they do makes so much sense from a chiropractic point of view, I don't understand why we (traditional medical community) haven't done these things I guess we just never thought of it before."
While Lara stayed at the camp under the supervision of another parent Iris returned Jeff to the Airport in Toronto about a 3 hr drive. Upon returning she said, "We both cried like babies the whole drive to the airport, when we sat in the program and saw our daughter taking independent steps with only light fingertip cuing, we knew then, that it will happen, I don't know when, but she will walk!"
Jeff and Iris were concerned that they may not get cooperation from her school when they returned home. However the school was very excited about Lara's progress, she no longer takes her wheelchair and another student has been assigned to be Lara's assistant. To allow her to use her canes the teachers let her out of class five minutes early to give her extra time to use her canes to navigate the hallways without a lot of other traffic.
Chris: We’re from Georgia and our daughter Jessica is now 11 years old. This is our 7th session coming to Ability Camp. She began as a 5 year old, twice that year and we’ve been back every summer for the July sessions.
During the first session when we were here the Conductors were able to make the transition onto the quad canes. Since then, another 18 months later she moved onto single canes, which has been her sole means of getting around the last 3 or 4 years or so.
This summer she’s begun to be confident enough to move without her canes, which is something that we’d really basically given up on. So, we’re obviously magnificently grateful for all that’s gone on here.
In some ways the real benefits of the program come from the after school work that the kids do together and our greatest joy here is watching Jessie pushed by other kids or pushing other kids to try things that she hasn’t wanted to try.
Christine:We’re both school administrators and we know a lot about teaching. The Conductors have that wonderful balance of warmth, genuine love and care for the children, but they also have real strict standards. So it’s really unique to find that balance of warmth and rigor which Jessie responded to from the very beginning.
We were beginning to doubt that she’d walk independently, but it’s the combination of real good solid teaching, the way the sessions are set up, the repetitive activities, the memory from the muscle to the brain and different positions of lying, sitting and standing, and an individual program that’s tailored to meet each child’s needs.
She makes phenomenal progress and she really enjoys doing it at the same time. So now we’re thrilled she’s walking
There are some other places in the country who do Conductive Education but, as far as I know, this is the only place where there’s an actual residential program and that makes a huge difference, having the families live here, 24 hours a day. It’s not the Taj Mahal, it’s a place to live, but the presence of other families here, and our abilities to support each other and also the kids abilities to support each other while we’re living here, I think is the thing that makes this Conductive Education center so unique.