Two years ago, Yadiel Collado’s life consisted of this: he spent most of his days lying on a table or in his bed. Occasionally he would look at something as he moved it with his hand, but his eyesight was scattered. He never spoke. Read on to see how he is doing now.
Cesar, an adolescent boy in the Dominican Republic with mobility and language issues, dropped out of school in the third grade because there was no way to help him learn. When Cesar started ICC’s new adolescent program in the Santiago area, he was shy and hardly spoke at all. Now, he begins the day by walking around the table greeting everyone with a firm handshake and big smile.
Stumble into one of the four new adolescent groups in the ICC Dominican Republic’s Community Inclusion Program, and you’ll see teens with disabilities working through simple math problems, learning to recognize and draw different shapes, or sounding out words such as “mama” and “papa.” You may find a few practicing fine motor skills by threading a string through a toy, or you may see them working together as a team to play a game, clapping and cheering on each of their peers—regardless if they “win” or “lose.”
Rafy de Jesus Jimenez is one of the children of the Community Based Rehabilitation Program (CBR) in Santiago, Dominican Republic. He has been diagnosed with a psychomotor delay, which involves a slowing-down of thought and a reduction of physical movements. It is a condition through which his learning and social skills are affected due to mental impairment.