Global Reach – How Minds-in-Motion’s Maze is Helping to Improve Lives in Central America
A Minds-in-Motion success story from Belize
The staff at Minds-in-Motion continue to be humbled by the stories shared by parents, teachers and others who have experienced the positive changes enabled by our program and sometimes like to share stories that even surprise us! The following is one of those.
1,500 miles – sometimes the best path is a circuitous route not a straight line
Recently, Virginia McDonald, a retired teacher from St. Louis, participated in a Minds-in-Motion training session and shared how she first learned of our program.
As awareness of and participation in Minds-in-Motion programs continue to expand geographically, we assumed Virginia had become aware of the program from others in St. Louis area; however, we were astonished when she explained of first learning about Minds-in-Motion on a Central American mission trip in Belize! (That’s 1,500 miles or 6x the distance from our Louisville Center to Virginia’s home in St. Louis.)
We can’t thank Virginia enough for sharing her story which enabled us to learn more about the efforts in Belize and reconnect with a prior enrollee in our Minds-in-Motion training program.
The Global Connectivity of Minds-in-Motion: The Inspiration Center Belize
The Inspiration Center is a non-governmental organization in Belize City that provides various therapy and health services to children, ages 2 to 14, with various levels of diagnoses. They are always seeking activities to incorporate in their treatment approach.
You can find out more about the mission of this organization HERE.
The Two Women Who Helped Bring Minds-in-Motion to Belize
Dr. Carrie Clark Hawkins, PT, DPT
Dr. Hawkins an assistant professor at Bellarmine University in the Physical Therapy program.
Yearly, Dr. Hawkins coordinates a trip to Belize with Physical Therapy Doctoral students to work with staff and patients at The Inspiration Center and a geriatric primary care clinic.
In discussions with a Louisville-based pediatric therapist, Dr. Hawkins learned about the Minds-in-Motion program and our handbook outlining the MiM Maze. Recognizing that many of our program’s sensory/motor protocols could be incorporated in The Inspiration Center’s activities, Dr. Hawkins contacted Candace Meyer to learn more.
Based on Minds-in-Motion protocols, Dr. Hawkins and The Bellarmine University students specifically tailored a program for The Inspiration Center, including multi-step tasks requiring fine and gross motor movements and problem solving. The Inspiration Center was provided with mobile Minds-in-Motion backpack kits, to increase the ease of usage whether in the clinic or out in the field.
Sister Beverly Hoffman, SCN PT
Sister Beverly is a Catholic religious sister of the Louisville-based Sisters of Charity of Nazareth and has been on mission in Belize for 15 years. In addition, she also serves as the Physical Therapist at The Inspiration Center.
Sister Beverly has worked alongside Dr. Hawkins and team to implement MiM sensory / motor stations at The Inspiration Center, and seen the impactful results benefiting the program’s students.
In addition to the Center-based program, Sister Beverly works with the Center’s rehabilitation field officers to go to client homes in rural areas throughout Belize and teach core protocols of the Minds-in-Motion program.
Given the positive outcomes from Minds-in-Motion, Sister Bev is very interested in implementing it in schools more broadly across Belize and is spearheading an effort to bring Candace Meyer to Belize to train many more teachers.
The connectivity, highlighted above, motivates us and keeps us focused on making every interaction with our Minds-in-Motion students, families and teachers one worth sharing.