New Pediatric Mobile Therapy Option to Benefit Children on St. Croix
A new mobile option for pediatric occupational, speech-language, and physical therapies just hit the roads of St. Croix. JS Therapies recently introduced “Sunny the Fun Bus” to better serve children in the island community. What appears as a plethora of interactive toys is actually a proven approach to help children overcome difficulties with sensory processing, fine motor development, balance/coordination, and beyond. The JS Therapies team is comprised of 14 dedicated professionals that make their approach to therapy fun for kids.
The driving force behind the repurposed bus is JS Therapies Owner and Occupational Therapist Julie Sommer. “Our goal is to empower children to reach their full potential,” said Sommer. “We use a play-based approach to make therapy enjoyable for kids and strive to involve their entire families in the process.”
With a presence on both St. Thomas and St. Croix, JS Therapies primarily operates out of Island Therapy Solutions in Gallows Bay. However, that eastern location presented a challenge for pediatric patients residing on St. Croix’s west end to commute regularly. Further complicated by school closures resulting from COVID-19, access to occupational, speech-language, and physical therapies was limited. So a mobile clinic was the solution to both problems, which also opens future opportunities to bring the bus to public events for screenings. It will also be available to rent for private parties, with funds accrued going toward therapies for uninsured youth. The bus became available due to the temporary halt of cruise ship traffic to the U.S. Virgin Islands.
“My grandson loves the new bus. The space is inviting and so much like the therapy center,” said Sirdrina Isaac-Joseph, whose grandson receives regular occupational therapy and speech-language sessions at JS Therapies. “While he is normally afraid of new faces, my grandson took to Miss Julie immediately and looks forward to seeing her. He thinks he gets to go play, but I have seen him come a long way with his fine motor skills.”
The remodel of the 25-passenger bus was a major undertaking. This included seat removal, repair and branding the exterior, renovating the bus walls and flooring, et cetera. The photos and graphics on the outside of the bus double as privacy tinting for the pediatric patients on board. “Sunny” is stocked with swings, balls, bubbles, along with arts and craft supplies utilized in therapy. Materials will be on rotation with the clinic location to keep the experience exciting for kids with weekly therapy appointments.
JS Therapies is a dual island practice serving pediatric patients with occupational, speech-language, feeding, aquatic, and physical therapies. Parents can find more information on the company website JStherapies.com. Inquiries may also be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 340-473-5924.
AeroMD Air Ambulance serves our neighbors throughout the Caribbean and worldwide.
“My best case for survival was to be taken off-island.”
Charles Jaquays, AeroMD Patient
“You guys saved [my husband's] life.”
Eileen des Jardins, Patient Companion
“If it wasn't for [AeroMD], I wouldn't be here today.”
Hayley Rodriguez, AeroMD Patient