To help you decide which presentations will be of most interest to you, this page contains a short overview of each session at this year’s conference.
Brian Hoare – What does motor learning actually mean?
Over the past two decades, task-focused models of therapy for children with cerebral palsy have established a strong evidence base for optimising skill acquisition and generalisation of these skills into daily life. Motor learning theory has guided the development of these therapies. However, theories are not implemented. Theories guide the development and implementation of specific strategies – the observable things that therapists do and say when supporting a person to learn a new action or task. They are also the things that need to be carefully explained and shared with parents/caregivers using effective coaching methods. Therefore, understanding what motor learning strategies are, along with when, why, and how to implement them is critical. To enable this, research needs to shift from understanding the “what” to “knowing how” to effectively execute and adapt motor learning strategies in various contexts. This presentation will help participants understand what motor learning theory means and how it informs current evidence-based practice. Informed by case presentations, video clips will illustrate the influence of both our actions and words, showcasing their effects on the acquisition of skills and generalisations of these skills.
BREAKOUT SESSIONS 1
1. Let’s get active!
- Ailish Malone and Karen Brady will present findings from the Youth Experience Matters research study that aimed to establish priorities for physical activity participation from the perspectives of adolescents with physical disability in Ireland.
- James Czencz will present findings from a study exploring what adults with complex cerebral palsy want and need in order to participate in community based physical activity.
- Karen McConnell will present findings from a research study that aimed to explore community-based gym exercise for non-ambulant adults with childhood onset disability such as cerebral palsy.
- Alix Crawford and Talia McDowell will share lived experiences and solutions aiming to reduce barriers to participation in gym-based exercise.
2. Disability: an inclusive employment opportunity, not a barrier
A person with a disability in Scotland is twice as likely to be unemployed compared to a non-disabled individual. This session will argue that disability should be seen as an opportunity, not a barrier. Vivian Maeda will discuss: the current situation for people with disabilities, the implications for their mental and financial health, the recommendations for the wider business community for a more inclusive recruitment strategy, and Business in the Community’s Opening Doors Campaign. Kasia Zduniak will share Aegon’s initiatives to ensure a more inclusive recruitment process and discuss how their work culture helps retain talent. Elaine Boyd will share her personal experience as a person with CP going through the recruitment process, and how continuous improvement is key for Talent Acquisition and Retention.
3. Introduction to Self-Directed Support and the SDS Pathway
The session will cover what Self-Directed Support is, the Act and statutory principles behind it and the steps (Person’s Pathway) that someone would follow on the journey towards a package of support. The session then covers the Four Self-Directed Support Options of how the budget can be used to enable the care and support required to be implemented in a way that suits the person’s individual circumstances best.
BREAKOUT SESSIONS 2
1. Steps of progression with AAC – From early introduction to curricular access
In this session we will explore how AAC use is developed, learning from the experience of Amber. The session will demonstrate how input from the family, a collaboration of professionals and Amber’s own skills and determination have led to successful use of AAC in the school setting. This presentation of one’s child’s progression will serve as a useful reflection for families and professionals with an interest in AAC.
2. Stay up late!
We’ll be talking about the Stay up Late campaign, Gig Buddies and fighting for the right to party! Stay Up Late and Gig Buddies support people with a learning disability to have full and active social lives and to be included in society.
3. Putting the humanity back into care
This session aims to change how we perceive and deliver person-centered care. As somebody who has a cerebral palsy and uses a power wheelchair I use a unique blend of personal experience, empathy and humour. I discuss what values underpin person-centered care illustrated through the stories straight from my heart. You will laugh, cry and ponder concepts you never have considered before. My approach is never to engage in a culture of blame but instead encourage people to be open to challenge their own misconceptions. I encourage self-reflection in a way that promotes compassion and kindness towards oneself.
4. Althea Study – Living Healthy Lives: Exploring the effects of growing older with cerebral palsy the use of health care services across the life course
This session will present evidence from a national UK study to increase knowledge and understanding of cerebral palsy (CP) as a lifelong impairment, and changing embodied effects of CP for men and women as they grow older. It will highlight the new knowledge the study has identified about the correlation between new embodied effects of CP across the life course, and the barriers to appropriate healthcare after compulsory education and beyond paediatric care.
BREAKOUT SESSIONS 3
1. Reachability: Seated fitness workshop
This session is open to all ages and abilities. This will be a fun filled fitness class to music incorporating lots of different movements. It will highlight the importance of looking after your posture in sitting in order to optimise how well you can reach in all directions. A short presentation will explain the importance of moving your arms away from your body for many functional daily tasks such as dressing, to shake somebody’s hand, reaching up into cupboards or down to the floor.
2. Fostering inclusive education
This will be a lively session exploring aspects of including disabled children and young people in mainstream education. Sharing her daughter’s experience, Cara will discuss the highs and lows of a child with ‘severe’ cerebral palsy attending mainstream school and open our eyes to what is possible when a school and family work together. Disability activist and student, Ciara, will also discuss how we can improve our education system so that disabled people are supported and the likelihood of bullying is decreased.
3. Adult Disability Payment, Year 1
This session will compare the Adult Disability Payment (ADP) with its predecessor, Personal Independence Payment (PIP). The session will cover: the background to the introduction of the benefit and how it differs from PIP; ADP in the broader context of social security spending; a comparison of the outcomes of the two benefits based on statistics provided by the Scottish Social Security Agency and the Department of Work and Pensions; and what happens to existing claims for PIP when they are moved over to the new system.
4. ‘Community versus Cure’: advocating for an holistic view on children’s cerebral palsy care
When they were growing up with cerebral palsy, Heather and Carrie-Ann describe ‘going through the motions’; prodding and poking, and oftentimes traumatic interventions with no real explanation other than to enable them to move ‘normally’. Later Carrie-Ann and Heather took to social media to shine a light on their own experiences and find like-minded individuals. What they didn’t expect to uncover when they did so was the power of community in profoundly changing their perspectives on disability. The session highlights the importance of an holistic medical journey, empowers those with CP to ‘own’ their own journeys, and uncovers the power of community in learning to live with cerebral palsy.