The World Health Organization (WHO), in collaboration with the nongovernmental organization Autism Speaks, is launching an online version of its training program for caregivers of children with developmental delays and disabilities, including autism.
The program has already been launched in an in-person format in over 30 countries, including Brazil, Italy, India, and Kenya, and provides parents and caregivers with essential skills in an effort to help boost the well-being and development of vulnerable children.
“In so many parts of the world, particularly — but not only — in low-income settings, people looking after autistic children often lack access to the information and services they need,” says Dr Chiara Servili, a WHO expert in the mental health and brain health of children and adolescents, adding that “The launch of the e-version means that many more thousands of families will now be able to benefit from it.”
Pre-recorded information sessions on topics ranging from engaging with children through play and problem-solving, using everyday routines as opportunities to learn, as well as helping the caregivers to improve their own well-being are all included in the program. What’s more, the caregivers can go at whatever pace suits their schedule and is particularly impactful in low-resource communities.