The Inspire Foundation works with children and people with disabilities, ranging from children with Down syndrome, Autism, and Cerebral Palsy to other conditions such as acquired physical disability and global developmental delay.
Last year alone Inspire delivered 49,250 hours of intervention to children and youths with a disability and, a good amount of these hours were delivered during Inspire’s Winter Programme.
This programme targets children with disability who attend mainstream schools and who follow an adapted school/class. It works on the principle of cooperation between Inspire staff/volunteers and LSA’s, where together they work hand in hand in supporting children to achieve their individual goals. When at Inspire the children are offered multi-disciplinary therapy such as Therapeutic Horseback Riding, Creative Therapy, Multi-Sensory room therapy and Hydrotherapy.
Whilst the service is offered free of charge, running the programme costs Inspire €700 per child. With 156 children making use of the service every year, the programme would not be sustainable without the support of local enterprises. This year, Casino Malta sponsored four children to attend the programme.
Fourteen-year old Hayden Buttigieg is one of these children. Haydan has Autism and ADHD, and his mother explains that whilst her son “doesn’t really talk a lot about what he’s feeling and thinking, when it comes to the programme, he always tells me how much he prefers it to going to his lessons. Normal school outings cause him a lot of anxiety as he worries that he will get lost or that other children will pick on him even though his LSA is usually with him at all times. We are really happy about the fact that he considers Inspire to be something of a safe space for himself and a place where he can feel comfortable and make friends.”
Thirteen-year old Giuseppe Palmier’s programme is also sponsored by Casino Malta. “He has a special kind of love for animals,” explains his mother Mariella, “he can never get enough of the horses at Inspire. He absolutely loves it, and it’s such a pleasure for us to see that therapy can be so beneficial and also so much fun for him.”
Over the years, Giuseppe’s family has noticed significant progress in their son. “He has become very perceptive, and he now understands us whenever we’re talking and he can follow a TV programme with ease. He also responds and reacts appropriately based on what he sees, and nowadays he moves his head quite a lot, something he wasn’t able to do when he was younger.”
“On behalf of our clients and their families, we extend our heartfelt gratitude to sponsors such as Casino Malta,” explains Antonello Gauci CEO – Inspire. “Such initiatives are the perfect example of how private enterprises and individuals can give back to society and make a real difference in someone’s life.”