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News & Press: PROMPT News

Ghana Speech Therapists Benefit From Unique PROMPT Therapy Workshop

Tuesday, March 3, 2020   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Lisa Bakosi
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Santa Fe, New Mexico, February 2020The small but emerging handful of Speech Language Therapists (SLTs) in Ghana, Africa now have new skills to help the speech impaired in their country thanks to The PROMPT Institute in collaboration with Multikids Africa. Together they hosted the first ever PROMPT Therapy training workshop this February.


Despite increasing global focus on rights and equity for people with disabilities, rehabilitation services for people who have communication disabilities in the Majority World remain low priority, according to the World Health Organization. 


Guy Lisella, Executive Director of The PROMPT Institute explained, “PROMPT treatment is one of the most effective speech therapy treatments for individuals with motor-speech disorders. Although PROMPT is widely available throughout the United States and many developed nations, there are no providers in West Africa. We are thrilled at the opportunity to partner with Multikids Africa to bring this very important therapy to the region. The local work done by Multikids Africa, combined with our Instructor, Cheryl Small Jackson, volunteering so much of her time, plus essential funding from the PROMPT Institute enabled us to complete this workshop and offer it at nearly no cost to participants. This truly exemplifies our non-profit vision to bring PROMPT to anyone who can benefit from it.”


Ghana, which lies on the coast of West Africa, has a population of around 27 million. Until 2018 there were just three qualified speech and language therapists (SLTs) for the entire country. 


“Now thanks to different programs at the University of Health and Allied Sciences and the University of Ghana, there are about 20 graduated SLTs but still far from enough to meet the demand for these services. This training is critical to help non-verbal children and adults on the autism spectrum and others with cerebral palsy,” said Farouk Iliasu, Program Manager at MultiKids Africa. 


Communication is critical to human interaction and a basic human right. Communication can be affected by a diverse range of conditions which impact the ability of an individual to communicate. Communication disability has been shown to have a significant effect on participation in family life, social life, education, work and community roles according to the International Communication Project. 


“Multikids expects the PROMPT training to widen the knowledge base and skills of our SLTs so that they are able to use complementary strategies to meet the needs of our students. We have a big commitment through our Community Clinic to improve the lives of children with Cerebral Palsy and run a free bi-monthly therapy clinic for these families, since their children are not in school. We are excited about how the PROMPT method will support the speech and related difficulties that these children with multiple disabilities are challenged with,” said Iliasu. 


“We have waited so long to bring PROMPT training to this part of Africa. To skill up Ghana’s pioneering Speech Pathologists with such excellent training, is true to our vision to capacity build local therapists  to treat the thousands of kids who need it. Thank you, Cheryl, for your passion and skill,” said Amanda Budge, Executive Director of Multikids Africa. 


Cheryl Small Jackson, Speech and Language Pathologist and PROMPT Instructor who taught the three day PROMPT course, explained, "For the last 20 years my vision has been to bring quality and efficacy based evaluative and therapeutic services to all parts of Africa. Today it became a reality! Thank you to the PROMPT Institute and Multikids  for the honor and privilege to teach the course to twelve speech and language pathologists who were smart, dedicated and passionate about helping their clients to become better communicators. The African proverb rings true, ‘It Takes a Village’." 


The PROMPT Institute is a non-profit organization based in the United States. The organization’s vision is to have PROMPT readily available to every person, in every country, who has potential to benefit from it. The Institute achieves this goal through education, research and treatment grant programs. In 2019, more than 365,000 people with speech disorders on six continents benefitted from PROMPT treatment. Visit prompt.org to learn more about the Institute and the PROMPT technique.  


Multikids Africa is a Human Rights Non-Governmental Organization working together with local and international partners to support and promote inclusive education and wellbeing for children with special educational needs or disability (SEND). https://www.multikidsafrica.org/


Your donations help further the mission of this life-changing work by supporting the PROMPT Institute. https://promptinstitute.com/donations/donate.asp?id=1389

 

Pictured here: Instructor, Cheryl Small Jackson demonstrates PROMPTing on Ayesha Amartey (left) and Ruby Commodore (right). 

 

Pictured here with Sonia E.I. Aboagye, Ag. Head of Department

Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences University of Health & Allied Sciences, is the first ever graduating class of PROMPT trained SLTs in Ghana. In no particular order: Adelaide Gyamera, Ayesha Amartey, Abraham Osei Owusu, Adjigbli Felix Yao, Annie-Mae Rourke, Sonia Aboagye, Pamela Klutse, Rahsa Gibrill, Fidelis Dumenya, Seyram Tsigbey, Bernice Brown, and Ruby Commodore. 

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