Katie Norvell, adjunct professor and music therapy grad student and Anna Moffat, a music therapy student, wrote the following regarding their work and experiences:
What a week! After our adventure-filled weekend in Panajachel (pictures to follow on another posting hopefully later this afternoon), we have been hard at work back in Antigua.
The students at Hermano Pedro were very excited to have the OTs and the MTs back on Monday morning, and we were greeted with dances, instruments, and many song requests! Monday afternoon was spent traveling to a nearby school for special education, La Pescena, which opened its doors only four months ago with the help of parents, siblings, and community volunteers. Students with special needs such as autism, Down´s syndrome, CP and learning disabilities are educated each afternoon because they are not allowed to attend the local public schools in the mornings, and the patience and drive of everyone involved is truly incredible. We had the opportunity to assist the students in making and playing their own instruments, and also had a blast practicing our colors and body parts with the help of Spanish songs and LOTS of balloons! We left quite a few supplies for the school and look forward to future collaboration.
Both the MTs and OTs have also had a chance to meet with psychology students from Antigua in order to discuss our professions and the work we´ve been doing at Hermano Pedro. Despite the language barrier (and thanks to the amazing Hugo!) the conversations were very successful and we were able to answer their many questions and offer suggestions and recommendations for specific populations. We have made so many friends in Antigua, and although we miss our friends and family back home, we will be very sad to leave our new friends behind.