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The (new) role of an intervenor during COVID - 19 Guest Blog by Denise Teperine

Updated: Sep 30, 2022

My name is Denise Teperine. I live in Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil.

I am an educator and specialist in visual and hearing impairment, deaf blindness, multisensory impairment and global developmental disorders.

l am a member of Grupo Brasil de Apoio ao Surdocego e ao Múlitplo Deficiente Sensoria - (Brazil support group for deaf blind and multiple sensory impaired)

I began working with people with disabilities back in the 1980s and have since dedicated my life in the area of to working with people with disabilities.

In 2003 I had the opportunity of going to Canada to attend the 13th DbI World Conference supported by the Canadian Deafblind and Rubella Association.

Therefore, I dedicate this blog to our dear Stan Munroe.

In Canada I had the opportunity of learning about the work of the intervenors and decided that was what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.

In 2008 I moved to Manaus, Amazonia to

work with a child (NBS) that had CHARGE Syndrome who was 5 years old.

and I’ve been here for 12 years, working full time with this child.

In 2011 we had the International Seminar on Inclusive Education here in Manaus with the presence of Stan Munroe (Canada) and Jude Nicholas (Norway).

One of the main goals was to talk about the role of the intervenor.

From the beginning, 'NBS' main learning style was music in a pragmatic language associated with the movement.

The layout of his routine of activities amongst specific learning of concepts, daily life skills, physical activities and therapies was based on the use of T-shirts with different colours for each day of the week.

The establishment of this routine, since the beginning of the work with him, meant that unexpected situations were increasingly faced with less difficulty. Crises of self-harm or aggression against the others continued and continue to exist, but in lesser quantity and intensity.

Like any place, COVID -19 has dramatically changed everyone's life and it was no different with NBS. However, some measures allowed that these changes would not harm neither the boy's work nor his safety.

I stopped commuting and started living with the family. Presence of the parents at home 24/7 could be difficult for NBS to understand so they stay in their home office and continue the interaction at the moments they used to do before.

Remember each situation is an opportunity! Thus, the COVID -19 had to be considered as a new learning opportunity!

NBS already shows that he understood the need of washing the hands more often. Nowadays he goes to the bathroom by himself, tries to turn on the tap and already washes his hands with the proper movements: up, down, one hand, another hand.

In addition, with the impossibility of leaving the house to explore the surroundings, as we used to do before, we began to explore more deeply the environments of the house, such as its backyard.

Considering that, we developed the project “what's in my garden” and since then, starting from the simplest to the most complex, we are structuring his knowledge and increasing his concepts of the world

Denise with her Anne Sullivan Award

Thank you Denise and thank you Nuno!

You are two truly inspiring people!


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