Occupational performance and self-determination: The role of the occupational therapist as volunteer in two mountain communities

Boyle, Moira (2014) Occupational performance and self-determination: The role of the occupational therapist as volunteer in two mountain communities. Australian Occupational Therapy Journal, 61 1: 6-12. doi:10.1111/1440-1630.12104


Author Boyle, Moira
Title Occupational performance and self-determination: The role of the occupational therapist as volunteer in two mountain communities
Journal name Australian Occupational Therapy Journal   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0045-0766
1440-1630
Publication date 2014-02-03
Year available 2014
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/1440-1630.12104
Open Access Status
Volume 61
Issue 1
Start page 6
End page 12
Total pages 7
Place of publication Richmond, VIC Australia
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Asia
Collection year 2015
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Background/aim
Occupational therapists involved in volunteer programmes do so as either a volunteer or as a professional working with volunteers. This study outlines two such programmes: one in regional Queensland, with refugees settling into a life in Australia, and one in Bhutan, with an organisation assisting families of children with disabilities. In both instances, the author has been involved as a volunteer, drawing on her occupational therapy skills, the Person-Environment-Occupation Model and self-determination theory as theoretical frameworks.

Method
This report offers an insight into two geographically and culturally different volunteer programmes, and outlines the potential for occupational therapists to be involved in cross-cultural experiences, within Australia and abroad. In the Australian setting the author is working with newly arrived refugees from Africa, Iran and Iraq in a local community group the Toowoomba Refugee and Migrant Service. Within the Bhutanese setting the author is working with the Ability Bhutan Society, an organisation established by a group of local parents with the initial aim of sharing experiences and information relating to their children with disabilities.

Results
The descriptions of each volunteering experience outline the opportunities for facilitating the development of independence, self-determination and acquisition of new roles in two cross-cultural communities by an occupational therapist working as a volunteer.

Conclusion
An occupational therapist's ability to assess the interaction between a person or organisation's skills, the environment in which that person or organisation is functioning, and the desired occupational outcomes of that person or organisation, enables a unique and valuable contribution as a volunteer.
Keyword Advocacy
African
Empowerment
Occupational justice
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Medicine Publications
 
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Created: Tue, 18 Nov 2014, 10:38:36 EST by Moira Boyle on behalf of Paediatrics & Child Health - RBWH