A Place to Learn and Grow: Amir's Story
Amir’s* family was very isolated during his early years. Amir’s mum, Nisha, and dad, Shaan, are originally from Nepal, and they had no family living in Australia and they didn’t know any other families with young children. They were unable to enrol Amir in child care until they had received Permanent Residency status and could access Child Care Subsidy (CCS) to help with child care costs.
As first-time parents, Nisha and Shaan didn’t realise that Amir was not reaching some important developmental milestones. It was only when he started child care at almost three, and they saw other children of Amir’s age, that they realised that his development was significantly behind that of his peers. Amir had very limited verbal skills, was unable to feed himself independently and did not know how to socialise and interact appropriately with other children.
Amir was diagnosed with a global developmental delay in early 2019. Our integrated team of Educators and Allied Health specialists (Occupational Therapists, Speech Pathologists and Social Workers) worked closely with Nisha and Shaan to develop strategies to support Amir’s learning and development in the centre and at home.
Amir initially found starting child care difficult, and he suffered separation anxiety when his parents left him for the day. However, with ongoing support and a safe, predictable routine, Amir eventually settled, and he bonded with his Educators in our Gorton House toddlers’ program.
With the integrated team’s help, Amir began to participate in the daily play-based educational program. He made great progress and began to use some words to communicate his needs, wants and choices, feed himself with adult support, and engage more frequently and positively in play with other children. In 2020 Amir made a smooth transition to Gorton House’s preschool room.
Amir will go to school in 2022, having received specialist support throughout his time attending Gorton House preschool. Our Educators and Allied Health team continue work to work with Amir and his parents to help him to get ready for this next big step
“It is wonderful how welcome we feel at The Infants’ Home. The educators, speech pathologists and occupation therapists are always keen to share ideas and strategies with us to support Amir, and they love to celebrate his wins and achievements with us.” — Nisha, Amir’s mum.
* Names have been changed for privacy.