Your questions answered...

Let us clear up some queries for you.....

There are some questions we are regularly asked so we will take this opportunity to answer them.....

Why has the name of the project changed so many times?

Originally we were called The One Love Day Service. At that time we had our own licence and a board of Ethiopian members. Unfortunately that board proved to be untrustworthy and we were forced to relinquish that licence. At the time, in order for the service to continue, we had no choice other than to accept the generous offer from the local Ethiopian Catholic Church to use their licence so that we could continue to function. At that time we changed our name to The One Heart Therapeutic Centre. 

Now we , once again, have our own licence , and our own very trust worthy board of professionals and have changed our name for use under this new licence to The One Heart Wholeness Centre

What is the criteria for a place at your project?

When a mother brings her child to us asking for help we do an assessment of the childs needs. Basically, if we feel we can meet those needs we offer the child a place if we have a vacancy, otherwise the child is placed on our waiting list. Generally we offer places to children with profound needs and often with concomitant impairments. If the child is more able than our children we refer them to the local school for children with disabilities or to one of the other 2 NGO's in town offering a drop-in service to such children

Do you offer a placement for life?

Sadly, No.

We set Aims & Objectives for each child and the staff work, using all the various therapies, to support each child to reach these goals. Once the first set of goals is reached we set new A&O and we repeat this practice until we feel that we have achieved all that we can achieve with each child. It is at that point that we are forced to terminate their service to make space for a new child who we can help. We have a very long waiting list and due to budgetary restraints we cannot take on more children so those on the waiting list are essentially waiting for a child to move on.

AKA The One Love Day service based in Bahir Dar, Ethiopia for children living with profound physical and learning disabilities

Staff and children at The One Heart Wholeness Centre
Staff and children at The One Heart Wholeness Centre

Our day......

At The One Heart Wholeness Centre we offer a range of therapeutic activities to children living with a variety of profound disabilities ranging from hydrocephalus to cerebral palsy and autism. Our children are aged between 3 years old and 18 years old. The children are escorted into the centre by bus where they are given a healthy breakfast,  a shower and a change of clothes, after enjoying  a full body massage. After lunch the children are separated into 4 small groups and are supported to participate in a choice of therapies including physiotherapy, music therapy, water therapy and relaxation sessions in the sensory room. Once their afternoon activity is over the children are given a snack and made ready to be escorted home. All of the children are non verbal,  doubly incontinent and unable to walk. The staff team sets individual Aims & Objectives for each child which the staff team then work towards during each therapeutic session. Our aim is for the children to be the best that they can be and live their best lives.

Barbara Mena Okugbeni