Clinical Student Testimonials

Shreebooke Univ. OT- 2018
Laurie-Anne Pelletier October to December 2018

I had a great time in Amar Seva Sangam, because of the very welcoming and friendly staff members as well as the learning opportunities I had while doing an internship for my master’s in occupational therapy. The learning experiences were very interesting and diverse. It pushed me to think further and use creativity to find how to help with some of the patient problems because the equipment available is very different from what we are generally used to have in Canada. Practicing Occupational therapy in a country where culture and religion are very different from where I come made me work on my cultural skills, which will surely be transferable to my practice in Canada. It was also great on a personal level to learn more and to be immersed in the South Indian’s culture and religions. I found that ASSA is an organization who is very dedicated, who offers great services to the population and who always wants to improve what they can offer. It was an honor and a real joy for me to participate to Amar Seva Sangam’s mission by doing international collaboration with them and I hope they will continue to grow so they keep on helping people in need.

University of Manitoba OT- 2018
Naomi Hatherly July to August 2018

Completing my final fieldwork placement for my occupational therapy degree at Amar Seva Sangam was a wonderful, unique, and enriching learning experience. The community at ASSA is so special, and I feel truly lucky to have had the chance to be a part of it. ASSA truly upholds the ideals of acceptance, accessibility, and seva (service), and is a model that would be beneficial all over the world. Through placement I learned not only clinical skills relevant to my field of study, but about the opportunities and challenges of working cross-culturally, and the importance of accessible and integrated communities.

University of Manitoba OT- 2018
Madison Wilson July to August 2018

Amar Seva Sangam provided a unique learning experience that allowed for complete cultural immersion. The practice context facilitated not only the development of confidence and independence in OT skills but also improved cultural sensitivity. Opportunities included getting to work with a translator, going into the community, and working within the diverse cultural norms. Overall, Amar Seva Sangam was an excellent opportunity to grow as a future clinician and I would not hesitate to recommend it to any future students.

University of Manitoba OT- 2018
Richa Soni July to August - 2018

Amar Seva Sangam calls itself “a valley for the disabled” and I have witnessed the truth in this. The campus is a welcoming heaven for all those of Tamil Nadu who need support to regain independence. ASSA was an incredible learning opportunity, and a time to develop my own identity as an occupational therapist. The independent and diverse learning context allows for the opportunity to be directly involved in every step of the therapy process. The clients I worked with showed immense determination and the kind souls of all the staff make you feel incredibly welcome into this energetic community. I look forward to translating the clinical skills and cultural awareness learnt from this placement in all aspects of my future OT practice.

Queens OT- 2018
Adi Rittenberg, Swanti Deut & Taylor Dyon June to July 2018

Amar Seva Sangam was a great experience, and we were able to expand our knowledge and understanding of southern India, and appreciate the cultural implications in our work. The staff were extremely welcoming and the facilities were beautiful. ASSA has so much more to offer than we expected, and we loved exploring all the services they provide. They made an effort to ensure our comfort and making sure that our project moves forward. We are thankful for the opportunity and look forward to hearing more about ASSA in the future!

Ottawa University OT- 2018
Rachel Worgan May to July 2018

I had a wonderful time on placement at ASSA. I learned a great deal about spinal cord injury and stroke rehab as well as how to work in a limited resource environment. The later allowed me to be creative with my interventions because materials I needed for treatment were not always available. I believe this will carry over to my work in Canada as well as I would like to work out in the community where materials are not always available. I really enjoyed my experience at ASSA and hope to return in the coming years.

Dalhousie OT- 2018
Krysta Longridge March to April 2018

Volunteering at Amar Seva Sangam (ASSA) was a wonderful experience. I had the opportunity to practice and learn new skills in a variety of practice settings including stroke, spinal cord injury and early intervention. Living and working at ASSA allowed me to be completely immersed in a culture that celebrates diversity and ability of all individuals. Running games nights for individuals with spinal cord was great fun and strengthened therapeutic relationships. I felt like I learned a lot from my clients and gained an unique, rich experience that would be difficult to find anywhere else.

Dalhousie OT- 2018
Hayley Lutes March to April 2018

My placement at Amar Seva Sangam was a valuable learning experience. ASSA does a very good job of building community for their clients and providing a holistic service that attempts to address not only the rehabilitation needs of the clients but also their mental health well being, recreation and re-engagement in vocational areas. I was given the freedom and independence to provide therapy to clients while still feeling fully supported by my offsite preceptor and the on site staff. Getting to practice coming up with creative solutions and equipment for a lower resource area was also a very useful exercise that I will take away from this. I look forward to continuing my relationship with ASSA and can’t wait to come back as a volunteer.

Dalhousie OT- 2018
Claire Wilson March to April 2018

My experience at ASSA has been a truly memorable one. There is a strong sense of community and caring that makes you immediately feel welcomed and cared for. Working at the Sangamam School for Special Children challenged me to be creative and to focus on interventions that are sustainable and cultural appropriate. I enjoyed getting to see a variety of children with different needs and working with teachers to come up with solutions in the classroom. This placement has helped shaped how I plan to practice as an occupational therapist. I am grateful for everything ASSA has taught me and really feel like I became part of the ASSA family.

UBC OT- 2018
Sarah Northrup February to March 2018

I have nothing but positive things to say about my time at ASSA. ASSA provides an opportunity for self-directed, independent learning while collaborating and sharing knowledge with many brilliant staff members. I am so grateful for this opportunity and I would recommend this placement to everyone. I will miss each and every person here and will be bringing many ideas, new learning, and memories back to Canada. Thank you!

UBC PT- 2018
Robyn Boudreau March to April 2018

Amar Seva Sangam has provided and incredible educational experience for me as a physiotherapy student from Canada. The variety of populations available to take on in your caseload, the immersion in the culture and the campus, and the opportunities to work with local PTs and other foreign students all contributed to making this experience amazing

UBC PT- 2018
Gwyn Narayan March to April 2018

My learning experience was positive, I enjoyed working with a wide variety of populations and being so involved in patients’ rehab. It was a great opportunity to learn and be immersed in the culture. I would definitely recommend the placement to students who are wanting to continue working in SCI or peds, as you get a lot of hands on time with patients.

UBC PT- 2018
Taylor Gibney February to March 2018

My experience at ASSA has been such a great learning experience; from the exposure to different conditions, to self directed and independent learning, and interaction with a different culture and healthcare providers. I am exceptionally grateful for all of the opportunities to work with children as it’s helped me discover my passion in paediatric healthcare. The staff here at ASSA have made this experience unforgettable with their kindness and expertise in the field of physiotherapy

MC Gill PT- 2018
Vi Ma January to February 2018

ASSA has given me so much in terms of learning experience. From the amazing welcome to my first trip to India, to the friendly people, to the sense of community. The staff, the residents and children living or working on campus have taken us as part of their family for 8 weeks. They have enriched my world view. Not only have I learned so much from rural Indian culture, but I have also gained so much in terms of my clinical skills. I became more confident and independent with what I have learnt in school.
I am thankful to all those who made this a great experience. And who knows, maybe someday I will come back as a supervisor!

MC Gill PT- 2018
Alicia Allen January to February 2018

This was an overall excellent learning experience! I especially loved the opportunity to experience working with many different types of clients and the independence I had with my treatment sessions. All the staff were very helpful, friendly, and knowledgeable, which made for a very pleasant learning environment.

MC Gill OT- 2018
Ela Rutkowski January to February 2018

Completing my clinical placement at Amar Seva Sangam was a great experience where I got to learn beyond simply developing my clinical skills. I was immersed in a community where people live and support each other and was warmly welcomed into it. I had an opportunity to work with a variety of patients which challenged me to become proficient at understanding and treating a wide range of issues. Being a student at ASSA not only helped me to become a better clinician but also opened up my eyes to new possibilities.

MC Gill OT- 2018
Julianne Brown January to February 2018

In January 2018, I spent 2 months at Amar Seva Sangam for my third clinical placement and Masters research project for Occupational Therapy. I worked with clients in the Spinal Cord Unit. Here I had opportunity to collaborate across a variety of programs, including vocational training, carpentry, and rehabilitation and medical services. A highlight of the experience was spending time with clients, both during therapy, and events during Games Nights at the SCI Unit. We enjoyed various sports and games, including a few Indian favorites like Cricket and Kerum, a board game that is like pool. As I worked with staff and clients, I learned about South Indian culture that allowed me to better tailor my treatment plans and interventions. Additionally, we were incredibly lucky that ASSA welcomed us to join in the many cultural events and celebrations over our time there it was wonderful! Overall, I feel that at ASSA, we got to know the community intimately and in turn, submerse ourselves in the richness and warmth of South India. It was an incredible and unforgettable experience!!

MC Gill OT- 2018
Chamila Anthonypillai January to February 2018

When I talk to my friends or family, I refer to Amar Seva Sangam as a heaven. From the very beginning, the concept of community was highlighted, and I felt immediately welcome. From there on, the support I received as a student from the residents, staff, and patients was incredible. I felt inspired by the environment at Amar Seva Sangam, where the motto of “live to serve- was brought to life and those who lived and worked for the community continued to show me that they were “able-. I found it very motivating to learn in this environment. It was different to any of my previous placements because of the rich sense of culture and community. I found that games nights and participation in cultural events were just as important to client wellbeing as traditional treatments. Taking part in this placement encouraged to me to push my limits, think creatively, and collaborate with many others to solve problems. I am incredible lucky to have this learning experience and hope to continue learning with Amar Seva Sangam in the future.