University of the Sunshine Coast offers an occupational therapy clinic for children and youth as part of its occupational therapy program. The Child and Youth Occupational Therapy Clinic is a student-led clinic where occupational therapy (OT) students, in their final two years of study, work directly with children, families and teachers under supervision to support children to engage in a broad range of activities at school, at home and in the community. They are provided with supervision (direct and in-direct), by a Clinical Placement Trainer who is an experienced, Australian-registered Occupational Therapist. The Child and Youth Occupational Therapy Clinic forms an integral part of OT student education.
- What is Occupational Therapy?
Occupational therapists support people to do the all the things that “occupy” their day. For children and youth, occupational therapists can facilitate the development of foundation skills that enable a
child/young person to engage in learning, develop personal independence and participate in play, sport and leisure. Occupational therapists collaborate with parents, teachers and others to support
a child/young person’s participation in daily occupations. These occupations can include activities such as:
- Dressing, including manipulating buttons and zips, tying laces, learning to put clothes on the right way around, putting on shoes/socks, learning how to sequence dressing
- Personal grooming activities including hair brushing, teeth brushing, washing hands, drying self after swimming or shower
- Using the toilet independently
- Opening lunch containers
- Pouring a drink
- Making a sandwich
- Using cutlery
School work / Part-time work
- Using hands effectively to hold and use everyday objects such as pencils, scissors, and other tools e.g. glue stick, folding paper, handling money
- Writing and pre-writing
- Attending to and engaging in learning/work activities
- Starting and completing activities independently
- Cooperating with teachers, other students and other people in the community
- Using public transport and finding the way to get to places independently
Play / Leisure
- Using free time for play and leisure
- Playing with peers and learning social rules such as turn-taking, sharing and waiting
- Using indoor and outdoor play equipment meaningfully and playfully
- Is my child/youth eligible?
Many government and non-government agencies offer occupational therapy services to children and youth. The Child and Youth Occupational Therapy Clinic can provide additional support for children already receiving services from other agencies, as well as supporting those children unable to access other avenues of support. Children with verified disabilities and those who would benefit from occupational therapy input but are not verified are both eligible for this Clinic.
- How much does it cost?
The University of the Sunshine Coast is proud to be able to offer the services of the Child and Youth Clinic free of charge.
- What does the service entail?
The Clinic operates on a Friday only during school terms 1, 2 and 4.
Assessment of your child’s performance will usually begin with a telephone or face to face meeting with you and/or the referrer to gather information about the child that will help in the assessment process. An appointment will be made for a formal one-to-one assessment of the child’s occupational performance to identify areas that will be important focus for services. This will occur in the Clinic space – Level 1, Health Tower, University of the Sunshine Coast or within the Mobile clinic (a Mercedes Sprinter) on-site at USC campus. You are required to attend these assessments with your child.
Additional parent and teacher questionnaires might be used to identify areas of concern and child participation needs that will focus goal setting.
A report summarising your child’s occupational performance needs, therapy goals, strategies trialed and your child’s progress is produced at the end of the Clinic. Two copies of that report are provided: one to parents, and one is retained in the child’s occupational therapy file at USC. Further distribution of reports will only be made upon your written request.
Following assessment, intervention may involve:
- Trial and recommendation of strategies within the classroom and at home
- Ideas for useful out-of-school activities and other service providers that may support your child’s development
- Activities and practice of specific skills within the context of the school environment with an OT student and an individual child or group of children
- What else should I know?
It is important to understand that this service is provided by OT students from the University at various stages of their education. Students might be in their third or fourth year of education. At no stage will the work of the OT students exceed their level of education. All students hold current Blue Cards for Suitability for Working with Children. They have also undergone Criminal History checks before coming on placement and hold current Senior First Aid Certificates.
Occasionally services may be suspended due to unforeseen circumstances and reasonable attempts will be made to communicate this to you ahead of time although this may not always be possible. Make-up appointments may not be available. The quality of services provided by students, as occupational therapists in training, will vary from student to student dependent on their learning and skill development and may not be at the same level as an experienced, registered occupational therapist. Services provided by OT students will be in-directly overseen by the Clinical Placement Trainer, who is a qualified and experienced occupational therapist to ensure safety and effectiveness of services. If you have any concerns about the services provided by the OT student please contact the Clinical Placement Trainer on the details below.
- How do I access the Clinic service?
Families can self-refer or be referred to the Child and Youth Clinic by another professional e.g. OT, GP, Psychologist, Speech and Language Pathologist etc. by contacting the USC Clinical Placement Trainer, Child and Youth Clinic, Cate Hilly. You are under no obligation to have your child participate in this Clinic. You may withdraw your consent for your child’s access from the Clinic at any time.
- What if I have further questions?
- Goal setting
- Download the Child and Youth Clinic brochure (PDF 919KB)
- Download the information for School staff and Families brochure (PDF 188KB)
Tuesdays from 10am-5pm (last appointment at 3.30pm) and Fridays 9.30am-5pm (last appointment at 3.30pm) during school terms 1, 2 and 4
How to register
If you would like your child to participate in the program please complete:
Return your completed documents to email: ChildandYouthUSC@usc.edu.au or via mail:
USC Clinical Placement Trainer
Child and Youth Clinic
ML33, School of Health and Sports Sciences
University of the Sunshine Coast
Locked Bag 4
MAROOCHYDORE DC QLD 4558
If you have any other reports from professionals, please provide a copy of these to the clinic so that this service can complement other information and strategies that you already have about your child.
Upon receipt of the referral and completed forms, you will be contacted by the Clinical Placement Trainer or an OT student to discuss support for your child and discuss your expectation of the Clinic. Children will then be prioritised on the basis of their level of support requirements.
Clinical Placement Trainer
Child and Youth Clinic
Tel: +61 5456 5781
Mobile: 0409 612 884
The USC Health Clinics
Level 1, Sports Tower (Building T)
USC Sports Stadium
Please note: Building T is not located on the main campus. Entry is via Sippy Downs Drive at the Claymore Road end.
Further OT information and resources
For PDF documents you must have the free Adobe Acrobat Reader, which can be downloaded from the Adobe Download page.