Speech Therapy update | CABDICO

Speech Therapy update

Speech therapy in Cambodia


On the 19th and 20th of December, 2013, CABDICO was invited to participate in a workshop with the Ministry of Social Affairs, Veterans and Youth (MoSVY) to develop the National Disability Strategic Plan.

Our purpose in attending was to ensure that there is an explicit mention of the development of Speech Therapy in Cambodia within the strategic plan. After attending CABDICO’s Speech Therapy Workshop just a few days previously, many participants at the meeting were receptive to our suggestions. We were very excited to succeed in our aims, and it was confirmed that Speech Therapy development is now part of the National Disability Strategic Plan. The importance of government participation cannot be overstated and we are grateful for the support of the Ministry of Social Affairs in making this possible.

CABDICO was also able to hold preliminary talks with the University of Health Sciences in Phnom Penh, to discuss the possibility of a Cambodian Speech Therapy course being held there in the future. Early discussions were promising, and the university will be working closely with one of the working groups to form out of CABDICO’s workshop.

Finally, CABDICO hosted two Speech Therapists from James Cook University in Townsville, Australia, who volunteered their time to teach the first round of training in our Speech Therapy pilot program. Importantly, participants from other organisations in Siem Reap also working with children with communication and swallowing joined in, so that knowledge could be spread amongst partners. Having measured the situation for the children with disabilities in this program prior to Speech Therapy training, CABDICO staff will have the opportunity to implement their new skills, and re-measure the impact of this training later in the year. However they will first participate in another workshop aimed at giving them basic skills for children who cannot swallow food and liquid safely.