Harriet Climbing High

17 August 2022

Girl climbing stairs in Conductive Education with Will

Harriet is a bright and determined 5-year-old girl, who loves playing with water, foam and cards. She attends the Centre regularly for Conductive Education and Physiotherapy, working hard and keeping Will and Andrea on their toes.

Hear about Harriet’s journey and progress from mum, Kathleen…

Girl climbing in physiotherapyIt was such a random positive coincidence that my husband Lloyd and I found CPotential. Back in 2018, while Harriet was in the playground at Primrose Hill, a mother called Miriam asked Lloyd if Harriet had Hypotonia, and during this time, we were in the middle of determining what was causing Harriet’s delay – she has been in therapy since she was 11 months old with the NHS and has also tried private treatments. However, we knew we wanted more. Lloyd responded “yes” and Miriam told us about this beautiful centre near Muswell Hill, which greatly impacted her son’s physical development.

We contacted CPotential and have been coming ever since.

After an assessment at the Centre, Harriet first started with Conductive Education sessions. It was hard at first for the Conductors and Harriet, but satisfying to see her progress. Harriet now also has physiotherapy and is working super hard to reach even more goals.

Our first impression was this is such an excellent centre for children with needs, and we hoped that more services were offered. We have done therapy camp, physiotherapy, and conductive education, and I believe there will be SLT soon!”

Harriet was a planned C-section baby, and the pregnancy was healthy. At age three, she was diagnosed with a rare genetic condition with a mutation in her GNAO1. G Protein Subunit Alpha O is a protein-coding gene. The GNAO1 neurodevelopmental disorder was diagnosed through genetic testing. Like many others, Harriet began abnormal movements and developmental delays. Some scientists suggest that GNAO1 could become one of the more common rare diseases worldwide as the cost for diagnostic tests is reduced and more patients are tested. In fact, the first GNAO1 patients were only identified in 2013. There is no known treatment or cure for GNAO1.

Girl on treadmill in spider cage - physiotherapy sessionAttempts to manage Harriet’s symptoms involve numerous therapies. Most GNAO1 patients are non-verbal and wheelchair dependent. Some patients have intellectual disabilities, but many possess higher cognitive function than may be initially appreciated. In Harriet’s case, we are fortunate that she is showing some independence in learning how to walk with the help of several intensive therapies, including physio (CME) therapy, SLT (Prompt) therapy and, occupational therapy and conductive education. She was also diagnosed with ASD at three and a half years old.

Harriet has been doing conductive education since 2018 and physiotherapy since 2021. We have also attended various therapy camps and intensive blocks at the centre. We have seen significant progress with Harriet’s confidence – being able to go upstairs with support and going in a tunnel. She continues to amaze us on a year-to-year basis. 

One of the factors that make any therapy successful is the patience that the therapist has. We always say that Harriet works better with a therapist at CPotential as they have absolute patience with the children. We have seen her confidence grow as time goes by, and she has become much more confident on her feet, and we are currently working on her tip-toe walking, which our therapists, both Will and Andrea, have been helping.

Since coming to CPotential, often Harriet will mimic the activities she has learnt at therapy; the more mobile she becomes and has a better understanding of her surrounding, the easier it would be for the whole family. We know significant improvements or differences will take time, but we are super grateful for how much progress she has achieved.

Finding the right therapy centre that works with your family is one of the most important things when raising a child with additional needs. We are so glad that we found CPotential!”

Girl on iJoy at Therapy Camp - CPotential

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