EURLYAID Newsletter March 2017



Eurlyaid was involved in a recent collaboration with the German national association for interdisziplinary early intervention “Vereinigung für Interdisziplinäre Frühförderung e.V” to present an international session at the 19. SYMPOSION FRÜHFÖRDERUNG 2017 Frühförderung von Anfang an – wirkt…” held from 9 – 11 March at Goethe-University of Frankfurt. The main theme was "Early Intervention from the Beginning on – it works…" The objective was to explore and discuss the effectiveness of early intervention, but also about preserving what has been tried - integrating new approaches and the dialogue about actual challenges, development of actual needs and affordances. 600 professionals joined the congress with more than 50 presentations and workshops.


Before the international symposium commenced Professor Britta Gebhard (Board Member of Eurlyaid) told delegates about the work undertaken by Eurlyaid and invited delegates to join as members.  The collaborative and collegial nature of Eurlyaid was stressed.

Britta Gebbhard introducing the international session

The international presentations were held on Friday 10 March as follows:

• 1.      09.00–09.45 · Saal 10 · D1 · PhD Ana Teresa Brito, (Moderation: B. Gebhard) - Rethinking professional development for a transcultural and inclusive Early Childhood Intervention

Ana Teresa discussed the Inclusive movement in Portugal which has been developed successfully since military revolution in 1974.  She stressed that inclusive and transcultural topics are fundamental contents for professional development in Early Childhood Intervention and Education, aiming to meet families and children it their true contemporary needs and strengths.

Ana Teresa Brito

• 2.      09.45–10.30 · Saal 11 · D2 · Prof. emeritus J.-J. Detraux (Moderation:B. Gebhard) Family adjustment when facing disability: co-construction of a space / time of «bientraitance» for both parents and professionals

Jean-Jacques discussed the way in which social perceptions and stigma are linked to the child’s disability but also to the wider context in which the family is stigmatized which contributes towards increasing social disadvantage and restricting social participation. The role of parents and professionals in reaching agreement on the best environment to promote child development was also discussed.

Jean Jacques Detraux

• 3.      11.00–11.45 · Saal 8 · H1 · Dr. Carolyn Blackburn (Moderation: A. Caby)

The value of relational pedagogy and professional love to early childhood intervention and child/family well being for children with complex disabilities

Carolyn discussed a centre-based interdisciplinary approach to early intervention services in Christchurch, New Zealand (the Champion Centre) which is underpinned by theories of relational pedagogy and professional love. Professionals work in collaboration with parents on commonly agreed goals to promote participation and inclusion and the parent-child relationship.

Carolyn Blackburn, Ana Teresa Brito and Jean-Jacques Detraux

• 4.      11.45–12.30 · Saal 9 · H2 · Ena Heimdahl (Moderation: A. Caby) Eating together is an act of love: Mealtimes and inclusion

Ena discussed the importance of understanding the difference between nutrition and eating and that eating is a very complex act. In most cases, no single factor accounts for a child’s feeding difficulties and adults have an important role to play in including children with feeding disabilities and eating problems in social mealtime situations.

At the end of the session, Professor Caby said that she would like the collaboration with Eurlyaid to continue as it was beneficial.

During the three day conference, Professor Gebhard, together with different German Colleagues, also presented workshops during the conference on the topics of single case studies in early intervention and a symposium presentation about the topic of participation as goal in early intervention.

Ena Heimdahl and Ana Teresa Brito

Goethe University campus