Students, Specialists Serve in Jamaica

ORLANDO, March 28, 2011 — During spring break, UCF physical therapy Instructor Jennifer Tucker led a team of nine Doctor of Physical Therapy (D.P.T.) students, along with a speech therapist and a wheelchair specialist, on a six-day humanitarian trip to Kingston, Jamaica. Their objective was to help meet the needs of children living in orphanges.

"We conducted trainings for 24 caregivers and volunteers, developed individualized care plans for seven children, and conducted fun, educational and therapeutic activities for approximately 60 children," Tucker said. "The trainings incorporated educational strategies, normal childhood development, infant stimulation, behavior strategies, body mechanics and the care plans."

The students also assisted with the repair and distribution of medical equipment. In total, they distributed three wheelchairs, five specialty mattress pads for pressure, a feeder seat, a positioning wedge and a support for toileting for children.

For the past seven years, Tucker has coordinated similar spring-break trips to Jamaica as part of an ongoing partnership with the Florida Hospital Outreach program SHARES International.


The team with wheelchairs in Jamaica
Tucker (far right) and the team in Jamaica

Physical therapy students in Jamaica