WONTHAGGI’S Noah’s Ark is dedicated to helping local children develop the skills they need to grow.
The team provides therapy and education for children up to eight years old with a disability or additional needs.
Noah’s Ark specialists, also known as Key Workers, visit you at home and can help build the skills and participation of your child.
Key Worker Ashleigh Wilson recently helped out local parents Andrea and Nick Cole with their daughter Bridget.
The four-year-old has Cornelia de Lange syndrome (Mild phenotype with associated microcephaly). She has expressive language delay, some saliva control issues, some conductive hearing loss and until recently had trouble toilet training.
“We have also needed help with behavioural things like dressing and eating and getting in the car,” said mum Andrea.
“Our key worker Ashleigh has come up with many strategies that we have tried over the last year to try and help Bridget with her communication and toilet training.
“They have been the most important goals,” she said, adding that Ashleigh has also visited Bridget’s day care to see the four-year-old in a different environment.
She’s also trialled different routines for Bridget to help her feel more in control of her environment.
“She (Ashleigh) really helps me to face the challenges that Bridget presents me with but she also helps me to keep organised and on top of all of the appointments we have.”
The key worker also helps Andrea to minimise her stress, often reminding the mother of four to take care of herself as well.
“I really value Ashleigh and not only her care of Bridget but of our whole family,” she said, adding that she’s very grateful for the service from Noah’s Ark.
“Bridget has made some amazing progress in the last 12 months and I don’t think I would have managed without Ashleigh’s help,” she said.
“The next 12 months are going to be full of challenges and I’m glad that we will Ashleigh to support us.”
Ashleigh, reflecting on her role at Noah’s Ark, enjoys that she can witness the growth and development of children over time.
“As the mother of four children, Andrea already has plenty of knowledge and skills about raising children,” Ashleigh said.
“So often we have focussed more on problem-solving together and how we can adapt the things she already knows in a way that will be most beneficial for Bridget.”
She recalls trying many methods to toilet train Bridget. Then when she and Andrea decided maybe it was time to have a break from it, they say “something just clicked” for Bridget and she was soon fully day-time toilet trained.
The Wonthaggi team work with families across the Bass Coast and South Gippsland shires.
For more information, call 1800 819 140 or go to www.noahsarkinc.org.au.
You can also visit their Wonthaggi office at 152 Graham Street, suite 4, in the West End Arcade.