April is #OccupationalTherapyMonth. I could not be happier with my chosen profession, and the possibilities it has afforded me in my career. Admittedly a confusing name, occupational therapy is about the power of OCCUPATION - the things we do to occupy our time - and how we can leverage these everyday skills and activities to promote health and well-being.
As a pediatric OT, I support children and youth to do what they find meaningful, and to become what they want to be. This can be as simple a task as learning to crawl or tie shoes independently, to something as complex as navigating an unsafe living environment or the juvenile justice system to successfully complete high school.
I work with children born with learning differences, genetic conditions, and a variety of neurotypes. I treat children with cancer, kids healing post-injury, and those experiencing mental health crises. I am a guidepost for families and caregivers, providing hope, inclusion, playfulness, creativity, and care.
As an OT educator, I get to experience students falling in love with this incredible profession, pushing themselves to become evidence-based, client-centered practitioners who I know will make a difference in the lives of so many. I study new treatment techniques and work to better understand the nature of what we do and why.
CCPS employs occupational therapy practitioners to serve students individually and in groups, work as part of classroom and IEP teams, and consult with other educators to support all students' learning and development. Our school system is also a partner with local OT education programs, allowing students to practice their OT skill under supervision as they prepare to enter the profession.
This month, I celebrate #OccupationalTherapy with pride and encourage you to learn more about the work that occupational therapy practitioners do to improve the everyday lives of those we serve: https://www.aota.org/about/for-the-media/about-occupational-therapy.