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Support from the Queen for disabilities in Bhutan

Queen consort of Bhutan in 2011

Queen consort of Bhutan in 2011

Support from the Queen for disablities in Bhutan

Here is a picture taken in Paro, Bhutan (not far from the little airport).
On December 2nd Lisa arrived in the capital city of Bhutan, which is much more populated, about 80,000 people, but the landscape is still pretty spectacular. On Saturday, Dec 2nd there was an all day marathon with Ability Bhutan Society’s community events honoring people with special needs. There was something like the Special Olympics with disabled kids participating in races and such, and the Queen of Bhutan actually attended and gave out trophies to the kids. Very sweet. She then stopped by our tent and shook our hands which was quite a moment.

The afternoon ended with a forum/discussion of issues facing kids with special needs, with about ten community leaders presenting on various obstacles. They have a lot to tackle as just their infrastructure is so challenging for people with physical disabilities. There was also a lot of discussion about their special education system, practical issues of inclusion vs. special schools, how to get the government ministries more involved, etc. Dr. Berman presented on how the US has tried to tackle issues with various laws, e.g. American with Disabilities Act, IDEA and Free and Appropriate Public Education, IEPs/504s, importance of early intervention, etc.
On Dec 3rd, Lisa visited the hospital with Kie Johnson while Dr. Berman toured an early intervention center in another town.
Today, Dec 4th the team starts their presentations! We wish them the best of luck!