MU Students Offer Water Play for Kids with Special Needs

8 years 7 hours 58 minutes ago Thursday, July 15 2010 Jul 15, 2010 Thursday, July 15, 2010 11:52:32 AM CDT July 15, 2010 in News
A group of occupational therapy students from the University of Missouri School of Health Professions created "Splashin' at Stephens," a fun day in the sun and water at Stephens Lake designed just for kids with disabilities and special needs. 

The event runs from 4 to 6:30 p.m. July 19 at the Stephens Lakes Playground and will feature various organized water games.  Because, for safety and assistance, the occupational therapy students want to maintain a low participant-to-student ratio, registration is required and limited to 20 children. "We tried to think about what children would like to do in summer, and water activities were the fist things to come to mind.  After doing some research, we realized there aren't many opportunities for adapted aquatics in Columbia," says Lauren Miener, one of the students who organized the event. 

Splashin' at Stephens was developed by the students for their Community Assessment occupational therapy class taught by Giuli Krug, clinical assistant professor of occupational therapy.  "In this class, the students learn how to design and implement projects  that help specific community members participate more fully in all life has to offer- in this case, so that kids who have special needs can play in the water just like other kids and in a safe and structured environment." 

Children aged three to 18 with a disability or special need are invited to register for the water play activity.  Parents or guardians may register their children by calling 573-882-3988.

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