We left our lodging early on Friday morning to spend the day at Aynimundo, not knowing what to expect. They have invited us to visit for several years, but the scheduling has never allowed. This year we committed to Friday and had a wonderful time.
In the morning we made home visits to see 3 families who are involved with Aynimundo. The first child we met was a tiny 12 year old who is primarily cared for by his older brother. He has never sat and was not even able to bend at his hips because of extremely high muscle tone and contractures. After 9 months of work with Aynimundo therapists and follow through by his brother, this little guy now is able to bend enough to make sitting in the wheelchair he will receive next week possible. We will need to be very careful in seating him, because he is so very thin and will be at risk for developing pressure ulcers. We hope that he will be able to eat more easily and gain weight once he is supported in a sitting position for meals.
At the next home we saw Wilmer and Kael, two brothers with the same genetic diagnosis. Their wonderful mother opens the home to several other kids with disabilities in the neighborhood so that the Aynimundo therapist can see them during one trip. They both received wheelchairs last year and were familiar to us, but they had grown and needed adjustments to their chairs.
Finally, we went to the home of a young man with a spinal cord injury, who we learned had been admitted to hospital with serious pressure ulcers. His mother and all of us traveled to see him. He has struggled to find meaning in life with no role models of active people with spinal cord injuries from whom he could learn. We are hoping he will gain strength and health sufficient to see us next year for an appropriate wheelchair to protect him from further injury, give him mobility and independence.
After the active morning out and about we enjoyed a wonderful lunch in celebration of the birthday of Veronica, director of Aynimundo, before spending the afternoon observing and consulting during therapy sessions. It was a great end to a good week!