What an amazing trip so far! As Stephanie Keesey mentioned in her blog post, our Peru experience has been thrilling, overwhelming, and educational in all the ways that are inevitable when you travel internationally. Our team has been immersed in a different culture, become (more or less) accustomed to some interesting driving experiences (!), and had many opportunities to practice our Spanish skills (of which I’d consider mine to be fairly basic). We are having a blast on our workdays as well as on our weekend sightseeing adventures!

During our training days in New York, Molly told us that our SkillCorps experience would push us out of our comfort zones, challenge us in ways that we hadn’t realized were possible, and ultimately house some of the most incredibly amazing experiences as well as incredibly difficult ones. With the wherewithal of a first-time SkillCorps traveler, I naively nodded my head and expressed reserved excitement, while attempting to imagine and prepare for any glitch in plans or comfort zone violations. Ha! One week later, I can honestly say that the challenges and moments of discomfort that I’ve experienced have been catalysts for personal growth, growth in my confidence as a clinician, and have also opened the doors to some pretty awesome conversations. Yay for experiencing new things! 🙂

We have all been so impressed with the work of the staff at Alcanzando! After a week of witnessing their clinical skills in action in clients’ homes and engaging in conversations about programming and client-specific goals, it is apparent to us that they have such a heart for the children they work with, and that they dedicate a huge amount of energy to programming and implementing ABA-based intervention in ways that lead to concrete change in their clients’ skill set. Our team (with the help of our fantastic translator Miguel!) ran a workshop for the supervisors at Alcanzando on Thursday afternoon, and an all-staff workshop on the principles of reinforcement, discrimination, and functions of behaviour yesterday. Staff participation was so encouraging, as we saw increased eagerness to learn more ABA terms and techniques. We also had some fun times with role-plays and other activities! Next week, we’ll be heading out to more client sessions to provide feedback and assistance in implementing new skills. For now, we’re off to enjoy a sunny Saturday in Miraflores!

 

Katie Tamming

SkillCorps Peru Team

 

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