INDIVIDUAL IMPACT AND NATIONAL SUSTAINABILITY
2 million people with disabilities in Madagascar need services
Because of the enormous need for intervention, our activities target two different areas.
Providing therapy services to the poor who cannot afford to access existing services.
Building capacity of national services, focusing on occupational therapy services.
A work of this magnitude needs a team! We partner with national authorities, the University of Antananarivo, charitable and education institutions nationally and internationally, and individuals like you, to ensure sustainable reach.
FROM 1 ... TO 10 ... AND COUNTING
The occupational therapy story
When Growing the Nations Therapy Programmes started working with the Ministry of Public Health in 2011, there were no permanent occupational therapists in Madagascar, except for our president Anri-Louise Oosthuizen, an expatriate. At that time, the Ministry of Public Health already recognised the need to increase the rehabilitation team to include occupational therapy and speech and language pathology, and added this in their national strategic plan for physical rehabilitation. At more or less the same time, mental health educators from the University of Antananarivo, recognised the need for occupational therapy in mental health services, and began investigating different routes of starting an education program.
Official partnerships formed, a Madagascar curriculum for educating occupational therapists at bachelor's level was developed, and the education program started. In May 2018 the first 9 Malagasy occupational therapists received their bachelor's degrees, raising the total number of occupational therapists from 1 to 10 over a period of 6 years ... a 1000% increase. Every year new students are enrolled into the program, and the profession keeps gaining visibility and capacity.