Jayden is a rambunctious but loving 9-year-old boy from a remote town in NSW.
Ever since he was small, Jayden* has struggled with social and communication skills, self-esteem and anxiety. He finds it difficult to form friendships and connections outside of his family. He has a great relationship with his older brother, but he lives and works over 40km away.
For a long time, Jayden’s parents struggled to find the support they needed to help him navigate school life, simply because of where they lived. In such a small regional town, specialist services were just not available. As time wore on, Jayden began to fall behind in his classes and became more and more isolated from his classmates.
Despite having a wonderful family GP and fantastic staff at the school all trying to help Jayden and his family, it was clear he needed a comprehensive assessment of his developmental health.
Last year, Jayden and his mum attended Manly for the Paediatric Developmental Program where he was assessed by our team of paediatricians, nurses, speech pathologists, psychologists, occupational therapists and dietitian. The multi-disciplinary team came together to discuss Jayden’s health concerns and his results showed that while he didn’t quite meet the criteria for a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder, he did have complex needs that would require on-going speech therapy to focus on communication and literacy, and occupational therapy for his motor skill development.
Since his assessment, Jayden’s school partnered with Royal Far West as part of our Telecare for Kids program and Jayden has been receiving virtual therapy sessions each week at school.
A year on his mum Megan says, “Jayden’s progress has been unbelievable. Given where we live, I thought it would be impossible for Jayden to have therapy sessions – but he’s been able to access both without the need to leave school and drive hours away. Working with his OT and speech pathologist has made a massive difference. Jayden will always have his challenges, but now there’s all these new little skills he’s learnt that have given him a real boost with his classmates and schoolwork. It’s made him so much happier at home and school and we’re all stoked!”
* To ensure privacy and confidentiality for our client families, our stories are representative in nature and real names or images are not used.