My name is Sara and I have two children. At the end of 2012, at the age of 2 ½ my son Sebastian was diagnosed with Autism. It was an overwhelming period for our family as we came to grips with his diagnosis and the lifelong challenges he would face.
Following his diagnosis our pediatrician recommended that we apply to be waitlisted for an Early Intervention Childhood Service. Two therapy models were offered to our family; centre-based support or home and kindergarten-based therapy via Noah’s Ark who operates under a Key Worker model. We chose Noah’s Ark as we felt that having someone visiting Sebastian at home and kinder would enable a more tailored and flexible approach to his unique needs.
Amina our Key Worker, provided Sebastian with a wide range of therapy which evolved as he developed new skills and challenges. Initially there was a strong emphasis on speech therapy and social integration at kindergarten. Amina excelled in this area as speech therapy is her specialty. Additionally, she regularly visited his kindergarten and provided them with visuals and other tools that helped them to manage Sebastian more effectively, enabling him to have a far more positive kindergarten experience.
Other therapy provided during the course of our time with Noah’s Ark included occupational therapy targeting his gross and fine motor skills, sensory issues and toileting skills. Amina would draw on the experience within her team to ensure that she was using the best practice whilst delivering OT related therapies. A specialist in this field completed an OT assessment on him and we were provided with a report detailing his unique sensory and motor skills profile. Privately these reports are expensive, so in addition to us being able to identify specific areas that needed support, we were able to save using our FaHCSIA (HCWA) funding on obtaining this information.
I was extremely impressed with the quality of therapy and service provided to Sebastian and our family by Noah’s Ark and Amina. Sebastian has developed into a bright and happy child who is attending Prep. He is thriving and I firmly believe that Noah’s Ark and Amina played a huge role in his development and for that our family is truly thankful. I would highly recommend the use of their services to any family facing similar challenges.