This is the only such resource for disabled children in the northern
Today I presented an overview of child development to the group – this was really fun, as all these women had lots of experience with small children, and some of the concepts were new to them, and with Allam and Haya translating for me, it lasted over three hours.
There were some unifying themes here: the families I saw were devoted to these children and were spending enormous amounts of time and energy trying to adequately feed and care for them. But all of them were seriously malnourished, and none
of the families knew how much their children needed to support normal growth. Most of them would benefit from a feeding tube placed directly into the stomach; it would allow for adequate nutrition, which would maximize their developmental potential, and would make life much easier for their families. I raised this with each of the families and their responses were varied: some could not bring themselves to consider it, some thought it was a good idea but felt that other family members would reject it; and some welcomed it. A seven-year-old boy, devastated by birth anoxia, had had a gastrostomy tube placed, and his father was quite comfortable with it. He told me that many Palestinian families would be ashamed of such a disabled child and hide them away, but he loved his son and kissed and hugged him throughout the visit. Most of them had serious sleep disturbances and severe constipation. All were seeing doctors outside the
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