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See You in Tianjin Soon!

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Do you live in Tianjin or know a family there? We are very happy to announce that at the start of the new school year in August, we will provide services at several international schools in Tianjin. Services will be provided by the professional staff of Eliott’s Corner, our center in Beijing. As in Beijing, we will offer occupational therapy, speech-language therapy, and physical therapy services to families in Tianjin. Learn more about the professional staff at Eliott’s Corner or contact us with specific questions about our new service provision in Tianjin.

New Services for Premature and “At Risk” Infants and Their Families

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Babies who are born prematurely or who experience complications at birth have a higher risk of developing more slowly than their peers and/or having associated problems with their development. It is important to monitor the development of these children closely so any problems that may arise can be identified and addressed early and effectively. Pediatric physical and occupational therapists are specifically trained to do detailed development checks that are not included in a typical well baby check-up.

Olivia’s Place will offer an Infant-Toddler Developmental Follow-Up Program that will provide parents with the opportunity to meet with pediatric physical and occupational therapists during one appointment. In addition to a complete history and developmental assessment using standardized assessment tools, the appointments in our Infant-Toddler Developmental Follow-up Program provide time for parents and caregivers to discuss any concerns they have about their baby’s development. If no significant problems are identified, suggestions will still be given to parents to promote their baby’s development. Treatment or therapy for any problems discovered will be offered, as well as any necessary referrals to specialists.

The Olivia’s Place Infant-Toddler Developmental Follow-Up Program brings an additional resource to the pediatric services available to parents and medical professionals in Shanghai to ensure that all infants get the very best start.  To make an Infant-Toddler Developmental Follow-up Program appointment or to learn more about the services offered through the program, please contact us via email or at 5404-0058.


Olivia’s Foundation in Our Communities and Beyond

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Olivia’s Foundation provides financial support to offset the cost of therapy for children in need. In addition, the foundation is committed to long term projects and dialogue that will advance the quality and accessibility of pediatric therapy and inclusive education for children throughout China. The foundation also supports Olivia’s Place staff in Beijing and Shanghai who wish to find meaningful ways to engage in pro bono work, both in our centers and in our communities.

Chen Xu School

Chen Xu School is a migrant school is Shanghai that received a grant from Olivia’s Foundation this spring to further their mission of

Durga Dass, Occupational Therapist, meets with teachers from Chen Xu School.

Durga Dass, Occupational Therapist, meets with teachers from Chen Xu School.

building an inclusive school model. In the past month, staff from Olivia’s Place has provided 4 trainings to teachers at Chen Xu School. Educational Psychologist Laura Lofy provided an overview of special education and IEP (Individualized Education Plan) training to give both the mainstream teachers and special education teachers the context and strategies to providing inclusive education and how to develop an individualized education plan. Training on communication, sensory diet, and classroom management were presented by Speech-Language Pathologist Angela Gong and Occupational Therapist Durga Dass. A final training event provided an opportunity for Olivia’s Place staff to work with both teachers and students at Chen Xu, to model the use of Circle of Friends, a peer-based intervention approach that will be used on an ongoing basis and will provide specific support to the children with special needs who are enrolled at the school. In addition to formal training events, psychologists and therapists from Olivia’s Place have worked side by side with staff from Chen Xu School to develop individualized education plans (IEP) for the 3 special needs children that the school currently serves.

Clinical Psychologist Beth Kremer-Collins, with the assistance of volunteer interpreter Emily Yan, is currently providing monthly mental health consultation at Chen Xu School. In the course of her work at Chen Xu, Beth has recently provided support for teachers and parents to help a child who experiences severe separation anxiety and to address learning difficulties with reading for another student.

Shanghai Baby’s Home

Sarah Kirk, who leads our occupational therapy team, Educational Psychologist Laura Lofy, and Foundation Director Joanna Ren recently visited Shanghai Baby’s Home, a local foster care center for orphans with special needs. During the visit, Sarah provided consultation for a baby girl who has difficulty with the use of her arms. As a result of the visit, the Olivia’s Place occupational therapy team plans to work with several of the children at the home, as well as their carers, over the summer.

Collaboration with Kunming Medical University

Olivia’s Foundation collaborated with Kunming Medical University this spring to arrange for Susan Hermes to be a guest lecturer in the university’s occupational therapy program. Susan, a US occupational therapist with more than twenty years of practical, academic, and research experience, spent approximately one month at Kunming Medical University teaching 36 students in their undergraduate occupational therapy program.

Following her time in Kunming, Susan presented a workshop on US trends in school based occupational therapy practice at Olivia’s Place. In addition to Olivia’s Place staff, therapists and administrators of Shanghai Sunshine Rehabilitation Center and several international therapy centers participated as well. The workshop was very well received and a good opportunity for both the international and local therapists to connect and exchange observations and information.

Olivia’s Place Professionals Reach Out

Physical Therapist Marc Innerhofer is providing pro bono therapy services to children at Little Flower Projects  foster center for medically fragile children in Beijing. In Shanghai, Occupational Therapist Eva Steins is volunteering her professional skills to provide therapy for a local child with cerebral palsy. Physical Therapist Veronica Bosch is providing pro bono physical therapy services to a migrant child who has spinal muscular atrophy. Another family in Hubei Province who has a child with the same condition found Olivia’s Place through Weibo. Because there are no comparable services where they live, Veronica has worked with the family to develop a home exercise program for their child.

Many Thanks to Baby in Harmony Productions!

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Baby in Harmony 2013_1Babies and kids clapped and twirled to a live interactive musical performance by professional classical musicians at the Grand Hyatt Beijing Hotel on the 5th of May. The Carnival of Animals concert delighted both adults and children with bubbles, balloons, and dance performances. Children followed the dances of their favorite animals, assembled animal figures, and reached for “underwater bubbles,” all to the tunes of classical musical pieces. The musicians and performers inspired and ignited the children’s interest in classical music in a fun-filled family event. Follow this link to see great photos of this event.


Nearly 300 guests raised more than 17,400 RMB for Olivia’s Foundation, the sole beneficiary of the event.  Olivia’s Foundation sincerely thanks Baby in Harmony Productions for putting together such a wonderful concert and helping to raise funds for Olivia’s Foundation. The money raised will be used to offset the cost of therapy for children in need and promote the quality and accessibility of pediatric therapy and inclusive education in China.

Learn more about Olivia’s Foundation here.  If you are interested in making a donation to Olivia’s Foundation or would like to discuss an event partnership, please contact our Foundation Director.


Eliott’s Corner and HOPE Collaborate to Provide Therapeutic Riding

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Eliott’s Corner is now working with HOPE (Horses Offering People Enrichment) to provide hippotherapy for children with special needs in Beijing. Hippotherapy, or therapeutic riding, is a form of therapy in which a therapist uses the characteristic movements of a horse to provide carefully graded motor input and a rich sensory experience. Children often develop a special relationship with the horse which can facilitate communication skills. Marc Innerhofer, and Eliott’s Corner physical therapist, works in collaboration with the HOPE team to most effectively utilize this powerful therapy tool. Find out more at HOPE’s web site or by contacting Eliott’s Corner.

Olivia’s Place Therapists Reach Out

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Olivia’s Place and its staff have always had a heart to reach out to Chinese children who have therapy needs that are not being met. To provide the most comprehensive care, we have developed strong links with several not for profit organizations. Most recently, our therapists have provided therapeutic support to the following organizations in Shanghai.

  •  Physical Therapists Marla Balzer and Veronica Bosch have been working with a little girl who is supported by Mifan Mama.


  • Occupational Therapist Eva Steins is providing therapy to a Baobei Foundation-supported girl to develop hand strength/function and play skills. Speech-Language Pathologist Angela Gong is also teaching this child some simple sign language. Additionally, Physical Therapist Lis Ringrose taught a baby massage workshop in March for mothers who provide “healing homes” for children supported through the Baobei Foundation.


  • In March, Angela Gong, along with Cheryl Ye, a visiting speech-language pathologist from Australia, spent some time at Shanghai Healing Homes. You can read Cheryl’s reflections here.


  • Finally, a multi-disciplinary team of Olivia’s Place professionals continues to aid a school for immigrant children, training teachers, providing assessments, and giving therapy to children with extra learning needs.


Olivia’s Place therapists also support each of these partner organizations with staff and caregiver training that can be used between therapist visits – ultimately providing more children with the high quality developmental habilitation they deserve.

Attend Baby in Harmony in Beijing and Support Olivia’s Foundation

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Please join us on May 5 at Baby in Harmony in Beijing! Olivia’s Foundation will be the beneficiary to a portion of proceeds from Baby In Harmony, an event that introduces parents to the benefits of classical music for cognitive development in children. The event is for families with children aged 0-7, as well as families who are expecting. Click here for pictures of last year’s event.

This year’s Baby in Harmony event will be held:
May 5, 2013
4:00 – 6:00 pm
Grand Hyatt Grand Ballroom
1 East Chang An Avenue, Beijing

Tickets are 100 RMB for adults and children over 1 year of age.  Tickets for children under 1 year of age are 50 RMB. Tickets may be purchased at Eliott’s Corner and Counting Sheep Boutique.

Olivia’s Foundation is very pleased to be the recipient of proceeds from this year’s Baby in Harmony event.  Donations to Olivia’s Foundation offset the standard cost of care for families in financial need, regardless of their citizenship. In addition to assisting with therapy costs for individual children, the foundation promotes access to high quality therapy for all children in China, and acts as a community resource for the development of inclusive school models. Foundation staff partner with local hospitals, rehabilitation centers, schools, orphanages, and other organizations to provide technical expertise, training, and other resources. The foundation also coordinates our staff’s pro bono work and major volunteer initiatives in China.

Spring Cleaning: Medical and Academic Records

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Spring has arrived and with it, the urge to straighten up the house and prepare for summer travels. One important item that should be on your checklist is time to organize your child’s medical and academic records. Keeping your records current and accessible is not just for the tidy-at-heart folks who relish clear desk tops or room to work on the kitchen counter. For families of children who receive therapy or learning support services, it can be an essential part of being an effective advocate and responsible caregiver.


Be prepared

The ability to quickly review the history within your child’s records can help to illuminate progress, goals that still need to be met (or met again), and techniques that have or have not been effective. Having ready access to information will help you present your ideas to service providers or ask questions with confidence, contributing to an atmosphere of respect and professionalism at school meetings, doctor visits, therapy sessions, or other encounters with the professionals in your child’s life. When the inevitable paperwork snafus happen—lost files, records that don’t get transferred—many headaches can be avoided when you are able to quickly retrieve copies from your own files. Perhaps the most critical reason for keeping a well-structured filing system is so someone else could step into your shoes and continue managing the services for your child in the event you are no longer able to.



Most of the critical documentation will fall into the categories of education, healthcare & financial records, as well as information for caregivers. Useful documents include observations from other adults who have a personal relationship with your child, articles about your child’s diagnosis, reports on scientifically-based teaching methods, and a list of tips on ‘what works’ for your child. Receipts, insurance statements, and other financial documents are an important part of your record keeping.


Ready? Go!

Getting started is often one of the greatest obstacles to getting organized. A good initial goal is to create a summary sheet that contains the basics: name, age, address, phone, identification numbers, emergency contacts, diagnoses, contact information for providers including doctors, school personnel, therapists, and other support professionals. Also list medications with dosage instructions, allergies, and insurance information. Breaking large tasks into smaller projects or stages can make it easier to tackle the effort to consolidate and update your child’s records.


What to keep:
  • Signed release of information forms
  • Annual school student handbook
  • Individual Education Plans (IEPs)
  • Report cards and IEP progress reports
  • Standardized test results
  • Evaluations and behavioral assessments
  • Copies of your child’s school records including attendance and any disciplinary file entries
  • Journal entries on your child’s behavior or development
  • Correspondence (letters, email, informal notes)
  • Notes from meetings
  • Contact log (record of conversations, incoming and outgoing phone calls)
  • Samples of school work (best, worst, and typical)
  • Medical records, including information about all medications
  • Therapists’ reports
  • Receipts and billing statements


How Can We Help?

Whether you are preparing for appointments over the summer with professionals in your home country, getting ready to repatriate, catching up with your insurance provider, or simply resolving to organize all of the paperwork that accompanies parenting, we can help if your child receives services at Olivia’s Place.  We are committed to maintaining clinical files to internationals standards to ensure excellent continuity of care, regardless of where you are in the world. Please contact us if we can answer any questions or be of assistance with respect to your child’s clinical records or Olivia’s Place financial documentation.

Motor Skills Development Workshop for Beijing Educators & Health Care Providers: March 16

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Educators and health care professionals in Beijing are invited to join us for When “Just Clumsy” is Cause for Concern, a children’s motor skills development workshop with a special focus on Development Coordination Disorder (DCD). The workshop is presented by Eliott’s Corner and hosted by 3e International School. Professional development certificates will be provided for this course.

About Motor Development in Children and Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD)

Developmental Coordination Disorder is a motor skills disorder.  DCD is characterized by delayed motor skills or difficulty with coordination that prevents a child from performing common, everyday tasks.  It affects five to six percent of all school-aged children.  Children with DCD are frequently described as “clumsy” or “awkward by their parents and teachers.  They have difficulty mastering simple motor activities, such as tying shoes or going down stairs.  Age appropriate academic and self-care tasks can also be challenging for them.

What You Will Learn

  • What is Developmental Coordination Disorder?
  • How does it exhibit?
  • What strategies can be used with all children and children with DCD in both physical education and general classroom settings to promote gross motor skills?
  • What are the connections between gross/fine motor development and academic performance
  • How can teachers and health care professionals communicate with parents more effectively about the importance of developing and supporting gross motor skills?
  • When should teachers refer a family for additional assistance?



Marc Innerhofer received his Bachelor of Physiotherapy at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia.  As a physical therapist, Marc has worked in both clinical and school environments. Prior to studying physical therapy, Marc completed national mandatory social service in a conductive therapy center for children with cerebral palsy in Vienna. Marc is originally from Austria. He speaks English, German, and Mandarin.

Who Should Attend

Educators, school administrators, and health professionals who work with children ages four and up.

Event Details

Date: Thursday, March 14th
Time: 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm
3e International School
No. 9-1 Side Park, Jiang Tai Xi Lu
Chaoyang District

Directions, metro stops, and addresses in Chinese can be found on the 3e website:

This event is FREE.

Registration by March 12th to Dory Robinson, or call 6461-6283.

News from Olivia’s Foundation

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Over the past two months, Olivia’s Place Educational Psychologist Laura Lofy provided 3 training sessions on autism assessment to the developmental pediatricians at Shanghai Children’s Medical Center. The training is part of a special project launched by the Center to create a systematic approach to identifying and providing intervention to preschool-age children with autism in Shanghai. Olivia’s Foundation is honored to be involved in the project and will continue to support its implementation over the next few months.

A grant through Olivia’s Foundation to Chen Xu School, a primary school serving migrant children in Shanghai, is supporting the

Occupational Therapist Durga Dass works with a student at Chen Xu School.

school’s mission of establishing a model school that provides inclusive education to children. There are over 300 migrant students and 3 local students with autism enrolled in the school. As part of the project, Olivia’s Place will provide technical expertise through several of our clinical staff in order to help the school’s teachers understand and address the individual learning needs of the special education students, while promoting inclusion in the regular education program. The project will help Chen Xu School to develop, implement, and monitor Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) for each of their students with special needs by taking them through this process and helping them develop procedures that they can continue to use going forward.

In Beijing, Olivia’s Foundation will be the beneficiary to a portion of proceeds from “Baby in Harmony,” an event that introduces parents to the benefits of classical music for cognitive development in children. The event is for families with children aged 0-7, as well as families who are expecting. Click here for pictures of last year’s event. This year’s Baby in Harmony event will be held:
May 5, 2013
4:00 – 6:00 pm
Grand Hyatt Grand Ballroom
1 East Chang An Avenue, Beijing

Tickets are 100 RMB for adults and children over 1, and 50 RMB for children under 1. Tickets can be purchased at Eliott’s Corner or Counting Sheep Boutique.