The Low vision centre of learning is excited to partner with Ray Ann Cook and Heather Bouwer to present this relevant talk: Sensory integration and the visually impaired person.
Ray Anne Cook has been an active occupational therapist in special schools and private practice for over 35 years. She was the director of Sensorykidzone, specializing with children and adults with sensory integration difficulties, Autism and ADHD. At present she is doing more mentoring and working with adults. Her Masters in sensory processing and ADHD was driven by her personal experience with her son and her won life, living with ADHD. Her passion is the misunderstood child, empowering their parents in the upbringing of their child and developing the art of playfulness in all of us. She has been involved in the South African Institute for Sensory Integration for over 20 yrs, as a board member and lecturer. She is the head for training Ayers Sensory Integration in South-Africa. She is on the EXCO of the South African Association for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.
Heather Bouwer qualified as an occupational therapist at the University of the Free State in 2008. Her interest and passion for paediatric occupational therapy and more specifically sensory integration, was ignited at university level already, having had the privilege of being lectured by Dr Annemarie van Jaarsveld, and the opportunity to work at the paediatric practice based at the university, as a 4th year student. After completing her community service year (2009) at a rural hospital near White River in Mpumalanga, Heather started her paediatric career at a Private Remedial School in White River, where she immediately felt the urgency to become trained in Sensory Integration, in order to understand and help her clients better. She obtained her SIPT Sensory Integration qualification in 2012, and her passion for using this powerful tool with children with a BROAD range of difficulties hasn’t stopped growing. Heather worked in various school and private practice settings in Nelspruit and Hoedspruit, and then in the Cape Winelands area since her and her husband relocated in 2016. In February 2021 Heather was appointed as the occupational therapist at Pioneer School for visually impaired learners, which was a completely new field for her. It has been incredibly stimulating and rewarding to apply sensory integration in her clinical reasoning with visually impaired learners, as well as in the assessment and intervention of these learners. She has found that it is a wonderfully holistic way to look at the visually impaired person, and that it has helped her tremendously to understand the challenges, behaviours and functioning of the visually impaired learners she works with.