Sargent Center students enjoyed a new Community Based Therapeutic Recreation program this summer, which combined classroom learning and therapy with fun community-based activities, such as sailing on Narragansett Bay, golf, bowling and martial arts.
With grant assistance from the John E. Fogarty Foundation, this program allowed all Sargent students, ages 3-21 enrolled in the day school and adolescent brain injury programs, the opportunity to participate and apply skills learned in the classroom and in therapy in actual community-based, therapeutic recreation activities that accommodated all skill levels and disabilities. The nine-week program culminated with an awards ceremony on the Sargent Campus where the students received medals and hats for their participation.
According to Dave Dermksian, Sargent’s adaptive physical educator, “The experience of being on a boat and actually sailing it through the Bay was a huge accomplishment and a unique opportunity for the kids. These activities not only incorporated fun for the students, but also allowed the students to carry over educational and therapeutic instruction into real life experiences. Many had never been on a golf course nor swung a golf club before.”
Activities were carefully chosen so all students could participate in at least one activity for maximum fun and therapeutic ability application. Based on the success of this year’s program, Sargent plans to carry over some activities into the fall and into the summer of 2014.
Sargent Center serves all of Rhode Island and surrounding states and specializes in providing medical rehabilitation and education services to assist children and adults in gaining skills to lead productive lives. The Center offers a Pediatric Center for children with autism and other complicated neurologic disorders, a Neuro-Rehabilitation Center for adolescents and adults who have suffered traumatic brain injuries and strokes, and a Regional Resource Center for consult/education services to families, professionals and schools.