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April 24, 2018

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Combination BA in Human Rights and Human Diversity and Youth and Children's Studies

I am in my third year at Laurier doing a double major in Youth and Children Studies and Human Rights and Human Diversity. My group’s research was conducted in HR300 Professionalization Seminar taught by Dr. Andrew Robinson. Our project focused on the benefits of the Therapeutic Recreation Program at Lansdowne Children's Centre. The goal of this research was to obtain a $5,000 grant from the Brant Community Foundation to help cover the costs of the therapeutic recreation therapists.

Lansdowne works with children from birth to 19 years with physical, mental and communication disabilities. The Therapeutic Recreations programs use treatment, education, and recreation/leisure services to assist clients to develop and use their leisure in ways that enhance their health, functional abilities, interpersonal relationships, independence and quality of life. Each program is developed in accordance with client’s capabilities, needs and interests.

What our research group learned during our research is that there are currently over 1,100 children on the waiting list for their recreation program because there are not enough therapists or the cost is too high. This program provides children with the opportunity to be involved in an extracurricular activity and build those social skills, while also improving their motor and communication skills. Eleven out of twelve parents said they were very satisfied with this program, showing just how beneficial it is. During our research we were able to see one of their art showcases which included art displays and dance performances; we truly saw the pride in their faces after all their hard work.

We were actually successful in receiving the $5,000 grant and our hope with this research is that more children will now benefit from this program, and in turn benefit the Brantford community.

Laurier Brantford hosted its second annual Undergraduate Research Celebration Week called Academic, Creative, and Engaged Research Showcase (ACERS) March 12-16, 2018. Cassandra Voets displayed a research poster on March 15, 2018 as part of this showcase.

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