Castries, March 26, 2013: The recently founded Cerebral Palsy Association of Saint Lucia today
announced their patron : Mrs Karolin Troubetzkoy, Executive Director of Jade Mountain and
Anse Chastanet Resorts in Soufriere, President of the St.Lucia Hotel and Tourism Association
and Honorary Consul of the Federal Republic of Germany has committed her networking skills,
resources and most importantly some of her valuable time to help spread the word and dispel the
myths associated with the condition.
The newly formed Association (CPA) has made some remarkable strides part of which was
hosting its 1st Annual Family Day in September 2012, where for the first time the affected
families were able to come together in a comfortable social setting.
The CPA officially launched its website www.cpastlucia.org, its face book page
www.facebook.com/CPAStLucia and a 30 second television clip to continue its work in
sensitizing the public on the condition.
One of the mandates of the CPA is to offer a Respite Program (short term temporary relief for
caregivers) to families. This May 2013, the activity “Encouraging Mobility through Arts &
Crafts” will encourage the use of the arms. This is a critical part of development as the children
must learn to use their arms for basic functions like eating. This activity will be supervised by
Teachers and Volunteers, whilst Parents will have the afternoon off to socialize with each other.
The Respite Program will continue annually, however, there will be smaller activities organized
depending on the Families’ need.
Approximately 17 million people worldwide are affected by Cerebral Palsy (CP)
(www.worldcpday.org). This condition occurs from childhood, therefore continuous physical,
occupational and speech therapy must be administered from a tender age to allow these children
to become contributing individuals in our society. In St.Lucia we have over 90 registered cases
of children living with Cerebral Palsy as of 2013.
The greatest misconception of CP is that the children cannot learn. Whilst some children are
mentally affected a greater number are not and therefore these children should be awarded the
opportunities to be educated like a regular child through adapted settings.
The therapy needs of all these children are not met and this is crucial to their development. Early
intervention needs to be a priority for AT RISK children. The critical age group to have an
impact on affected children is the age group 0-5 years. Universal education forms part of the
early intervention program and must take into account children with special needs from a tender
The CPA would like to highlight the rights of children and implores all authorities to allocate
more resources to helping meet these rights for children challenged in any form; not just
Cerebral Palsy. The CPA is also seeking a more cohesive and harmonious relationship between
the Ministries as much is needed to provide for a child with Cerebral Palsy and the approach
must be integrated from Health and Education, to Social Welfare. If you are concerned about
your child’s development please contact the Child Development and Guidance Centre for an
assessment at telephone # 450-0240.
A week of activities will take place in observance of World CP Day, 2nd October 2013.