January 2021

Happy new year and welcome to the January edition of CanChild Today! We are ringing in 2021 with the official launch of our CanChild strategic plan, and sharing upcoming events and recent publications by some of our members.

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CanChild in the Next Five Years!
CanChild’s Strategic Plan for 2020-2025 reflects our hopes for the future state of CanChild: a centre with a shared purpose, where innovative and impactful child health research is at the heart of what we do, and a centre that is recognized internationally for an environment that cultivates diversity and inclusion, collaboration and partnerships.
Our aim is to be a centre with an engaged culture that delivers impactful research and knowledge translation through intentional collaboration.
First Canadian Transition Conference: January 26-27!
Remember to register for the first Canadian Transition to Adulthood Pop-Up Event! Together, let us promote the best possible health outcomes for youth and families and celebrate what we are learning and doing to help young people to develop fully, even when they are challenged by health conditions. Please click the links below for more information. We hope to see you there!
Luke's Legacy Family Research Rounds!
CanChild and Kids Brain Health Network are excited to announce a new component to our Family Engagement in Research Training Program! Luke’s Legacy Family Research Rounds is a series of monthly virtual research presentations for families, patients, and researchers. Presentations are designed in a family-friendly format with an interactive discussion component.  
Our first event will take place on January 28 (Thursday) at 7:00 PM EST. The topic of the first session is family well-being, presented by the ENVISAGE (Enabling Visions and Growing Expectations) Research team. They will be sharing their experiences with developing a virtual workshop for parents who are new to the experience of childhood disability. 

For more information, please contact Kinga Pozniak or Rachel Martens at fer@mcmaster.ca.
Save the Date!
CP-NET Webinar: Patient Engagement in Research
February 3, 2021 | 12:00 to 1:00 PM EST

You are invited to the upcoming CP-NET Webinar on Patient Engagement in Research: The value and impact of genuine partnerships! Together, we will explore what genuine patient and family engagement in research looks like in practice, learn about the experiences of researchers in CP-NET projects, and understand patient engagement from the perspective of a young adult with Cerebral Palsy. You will have the opportunity to ask questions and learn more about how to get involved as a family or patient partner. For more information, please contact Alice Soper at sopera@mcmaster.ca.
OBI Public Talk: The Transformative Power of Neurotechnology!
How can neurotechnology transform the lives of individuals with neurological disabilities and disorders? Join the upcoming Ontario Brain Institute Public Talk to hear from industry leaders and caregivers about the prospect of tying technology with brain research to improve the quality of life of people who need it most.


Lita, a 24-year-old with an intellectual disability who loves to read and watch hockey. She dreams of living independently in her own apartment one day.

Sharon Wong, Director of Commercialization at Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital. Sharon helps technology integration in healthcare through partnerships between industry and research.

Andrea Palmer, Founder and CEO of Awake Labs. An entrepreneur and a tech geek, Andrea is committed to empowering care for people with brain disorders – starting with autism.

Angel Vibert, Director of Community Residential Services at Community Living North Bay. Angel is committed to creating environments for people with intellectual disabilities that promote their independence, participation, and inclusion in the community.

Diane Dewing, a mother of four including Jessica, a non-verbal 35-year-old women living with anxiety. Diane has 38 years of teaching experience facilitating inclusive classrooms and was President of the Ontario Teachers’ Federation.


Rackeb Tesfaye, Science Communicator & PhD Candidate,
McGill University

Thursday, January 21, 2021 | 6:30 to 7:30 PM EST
Celebrating Sibling Partnership in Research!
In Linda Nguyen’s doctoral studies, she partners with the Sibling Youth Advisory Council (SibYAC) to understand the experiences of siblings who have a brother or sister with a disability and preparing for health care transition.

In December 2020, the SibYAC celebrated their partnership and accomplishments for the year, including the design of the BEST SIBS Study, by hosting a virtual holiday social event and mailing care packages to each other.
SibYAC members from left to right: Dana Arafeh, Linda Nguyen, Hanae Davis, Jessica Havens, and
Samantha Bellefeuille.
Concussion Research on Social Media!
CanChild's Concussion Research is now on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter! Get the latest updates about the Back2Play App, research findings, concussion resources, and more.

Click the icons below to connect with us!
Dr. Gorter appointed Editor in Chief of the journal Child: Care, Health and Development!
CanChild Director Dr. Jan Willem Gorter is now the appointed Editor in Chief of the journal Child: Care, Health and Development

The international, peer-reviewed journal publishes papers focused on all the aspects of health and development of children, youth, and young adults. It aims to attract quantitative and qualitative research papers that examine the effects of social and environmental factors on health and development as well as those dealing with clinical issues, services and health policy. 
Recent Publications by CanChild Members!
A measure of parent engagement: plan appropriateness, partnering, and positive outcome expectancy in pediatric rehabilitation sessions
Parents' involvement in their children's intervention is associated with positive rehabilitation outcomes. While interests in parent engagement are growing, there are currently no appropriate tools to measure their participation. This study explored the reliability of the Pediatric Rehabilitation Intervention Measure of Engagement—Parent version (PRIME-P), a measure that parents use to report their thoughts and perceptions during their child's therapy sessions. The PRIME-P displayed a robust factor structure, good psychometric properties, and evidence of construct validity. Moreover, the analyses revealed that a highly engaged parent sees the intervention plan as appropriate, feels like a partner in the process, and expects to have positive outcomes for their child. Authors: King G, Chiarello L, McLarnon MJW, Ziviani J, Pinto M, Wright F, Phoenix M. Disabil Rehabil. 2021 Jan 4:1-10. doi: 10.1080/09638288.2020.1864036
Assessing communicative participation in preschool children with the Focus on the Outcomes of Communication Under Six: a scoping review
Focus on the Outcomes of Communication Under Six (FOCUS) is a measurement tool that asks parents to rate items related to how their children use communication to participate in everyday activities. Aside from its function in research and clinical practice, large health systems also use FOCUS to evaluate the impact of speech-language interventions. Results of this review reported growth in communicative participation across impairments, functional levels, and contexts. In addition, there is a weak to no correlation between changes in impairment and participation. This review highlights the need for additional research related to both the FOCUS and children’s communicative participation. Authors: Cunningham BJ, Thomas-Stonell N, Rosenbaum P. Dev Med Child Neurol. 2021 Jan;63(1):47-53. doi: 10.1111/dmcn.14665.
Does physical activity and BMI mediate the association between DCD and internalizing problems in early childhood? A partial test of the Environmental Stress Hypothesis
Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) is characterized by impaired gross and fine motor skills, making it difficult for children to do certain activities associated with daily living. This study indicated that preschool children with DCD experience more internalizing problems, including emotion control, withdrawal from social interactions, and complaints of somatic responses (e.g., headache or diarrhea). Neither physical activity nor Body Mass Index directly impacts internalizing problems or mediate the relationship between motor impairments and mental health problems. Further research should incorporate social and personal resources to better understand the context of the development of mental health problems in preschool children with DCD. Authors: Li YC, Kwan MYW, King-Dowling S, Rodriguez MC, Cairney J. Hum Mov Sci. 2020 Dec 31;75:102744. doi: 10.1016/j.humov.2020.102744.
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