by Stephanie Pearl Orendain
The Los Baños Gender and Development (GAD) Office, in partnership with the Autism Society Philippines (ASP) – Laguna, held a seminar on responsible parenting for parents of children with autism last March 26 at the new Los Baños municipal hall.
Participated in by 31 parents, the seminar focused on general management strategies in dealing with special children, self-care and independent living, and diet intervention. Held as part of the celebration of women’s month, the seminar targeted mothers as they are the ones mainly caring for special children, according to Lian del Valle, director of Autism Resource Center in Los Baños, and a member of ASP Laguna.
Here are some tips on dealing with special children:
- Set clear rules. Parents were advised not to use the words “No”, “Stop”, and “Don’t” to avoid triggering aggressive behavior. ASP encouraged parents to use positive words.
- Use language that the child understands. Visual cues are also helpful.
- Be firm but do not resort to physical violence.
- Follow a regular routine. For example, if the child insists on playing computer games, set a specific time when the child can play.
- Praise positive behavior.
ASP helps parents with special children through the organization’s various programs. Angeli Orense, whose child suffers from developmental delay and young stroke, is one of the beneficiaries of ASP. Through the activities of ASP, Angeli was able to learn how to handle the special needs of her child.
Aside from Angeli, Germalyn Ignacio is another participant and supporter of ASP’s activities. ASP helps Germalyn coordinate with the municipality regarding transportation assistance for her child’s therapy every Monday in Ortigas.
For more details, the GAD Office may be contacted through (049) 536-2818.