Caritas Baby Hospital Celebrates World Autism Day

On the occasion of World Autism Awareness Day, the Department of Social Services and the Physiotherapy Department at Caritas Baby Hospital (CBH) carried out a health day for approximately 16 families with autistic children on April 26, 2024.

Dr. Nader Handal, on behalf of the medical director, warmly welcomed the attendees. In his lecture, he provided insights into the complexities of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), discussing its various types, causes, and common symptoms. He emphasized the critical need for raising awareness, given the increasing rate of autism, which now affects 1 in 36 children.

Throughout the day, parents engaged in activities that enabled them to exchange insights and experiences while addressing commonly asked questions about caring for autistic children.

Mrs. Victoria Za’atreh, Occupational Therapist at CBH, delivered a comprehensive lecture on innovative occupational therapy strategies tailored to enhance the skills of autistic children. Additionally, Speech Therapist Mrs. Nancy Zeidan emphasized the crucial role of language and communication in the journey of autistic individuals, offering practical guidance for parents to navigate communication challenges with their children.

About this activity, Samia, a mother with an autistic daughter, emphasized its significance: "This activity is vital for parents with autistic children. It provides invaluable insights and the latest developments concerning the disease, empowering us as parents to improve the quality of life for our children”.

The social worker, Mrs. Hazar Barham, discussed the stages that parents experience when their child is diagnosed with autism. She also stressed on the vital need for social and psychosocial support for both autistic individuals and their families, highlighting the holistic approach to care.

The activity also featured an enlightening lecture on Theraplay by guest speaker Mrs. Hiba Hasan, a Developmental Educational Specialist, demonstrating how play can significantly enhance growth and development for autistic patients.

To conclude the day, Oraib shared a heartfelt success story about her son Jude, highlighting their journey with autism. She expressed, “After facing various challenges and frustrations, I've come to embrace raising an autistic child. Today, he attends school with confidence, engaging actively with his classmates”.