On Tuesday 25 October 80 guests gathered at Kids Are Kids! in Bateman to celebrate the official opening of the new state of the art therapy facility, the Sensory Xploration Hub. Founders of the Think Fragile X Foundation, Luke and Maria Goss, cut the ribbon as major sponsors Grant Thornton, Liberty International, and Valmec waited in anticipation. Other distinguished guests included Matt Taylor MLA, Lyn Beazely, Kids Are Kids! patron Professor Andrew Whitehouse and a number of families receiving therapy at Kids Are Kids!
The facility was made possible due to the 2015 Think Fragile X Foundation’s Gala Dinner which raised over $180,000 for the facility to be planned, constructed and resourced. At the major fundraising event Maria Goss said, “Having a sensory room at Kids Are Kids! would be amazing. The benefits are endless. With the help of their therapists the kids can work on their cognitive development, social and physical skills, their communication skills, emotional development and their sense of self. The rooms we build will be purpose designed around children of all levels of development and disabilities – a safe place for the kids to go and learn and explore”.
Ethan (5) and Logan Goss (4), sons of Luke and Maria, both have Fragile X Syndrome, a genetic condition causing intellectual disability, behavioural, communication, sensory and learning challenges. The therapists at Kids Are Kids! have been working with the Goss family since their diagnosis in early childhood and supporting them to flourish and achieve their full potential.
Patron of Kids Are Kids! and Director of the Autism Research Team at Telethon Kids Institute, Professor Andrew Whitehouse spoke at the launch, admiring the dedication and hard work of the Goss Family and Kids Are Kids! team for providing an outstanding world class facility to children with sensory challenges that allows them to be themselves, discover and play in a safe environment.
Executive Officer at Kids Are Kids!, Lisa Hoffman said the Sensory Xploration Hub has been developed with all children’s needs in mind. “The active room allows children to interact within a therapeutic environment and get feedback through movement, sound, texture and light. The calming room is equipped with bubble tubes, vibrating beanbags and specialized equipment to assist with deep pressure sensation. The magic carpet has over 600 applications and is an amazing tool for interaction and learning, and we cannot wait to share the Sensory Xploration Hub with all the families we work with and see the potential this special facility has on all aspects of their child’s development.”
The team of Occupational Therapists, Physiotherapists, Clinical Psychologists and Speech Pathologists at Kids Are Kids! will incorporate the Sensory Xploration Hub into the child’s individualised therapy plan where this will enhance the outcomes for the child. Families can also access the Xploration Hub to further work on their therapeutic program without their therapist present. Bookings are by appointment.