The Faculty of Nursing, University of Indonesia, Directorate of Research and Community Service, University of Indonesia (DRPM UI), Bekasi Autism House, Lentera Asa (LenSa), and Puta Fitri collaborated in a community service activity entitled “Optimizing the role of parents and teachers in helping adaptability to people with autism face the Covid-19 pandemic” with the main supervisor in this activity being Ria Utami Panjaitan, S.Kp., M.Kep.
This community service activity was attended by 64 parents and teachers from 3 autistic schools, namely Bekasi Autism House, Lentera Asa (LenSa), and Putra Fitri. The activities carried out are in the form of providing material and finally monitoring and evaluation. The materials given to teachers and parents include: The first material presented by Dr. dr. Suzy Yusna Dewi, Sp.KJ regarding the need for psychopharmaceutical therapy when children are learning from home and optimizing the role of ABK teachers in sifting the curriculum while studying from home; the second material was delivered by Dr. Rena Lativa on How to manage parental emotions when children study at home and how to manage children’s emotions while studying at home; The third material presented by Ririn Chaerul Jannah, S.Tr.Kes was about sensory integration activities with media at home; The fourth material was delivered by Prof. Achir Yani S.Hamid, M.N., DN.Sc about efforts to create a mentally healthy family in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic; The fifth material was delivered by Ns. Riska Amalya Nasution, M.Kep., Sp.Kep.J about knowing Covid-19; the sixth material was delivered by Ns. Ice Yulia Wardani, M.Kep. Sp.Kep.J on stress management during the Covid-19 pandemic; and the seventh material was closed by Ria Utami Panjaitan, S.Kp., M.Kep about cooperation in the family when children learn from home.
This community service consists of 2 activities, namely the provision of materials and also monitoring and evaluation. The provision of materials will take place from June 5, 2020 – July 3, 2020. While monitoring evaluation is carried out on October 31 – November 3, 2020. In this activity, a pretest is also carried out before the community service activities begin and a posttest is carried out after all activities are completed. The results of the pretest showed 30% of normal autism children’s adaptability, 12% borderline, 58% abnormal. Meanwhile, after being given community service activities, the posttest results of the adaptability of children with autism showed 34% normal, 14% borderline, and 52% abnormal.
Evaluation was also carried out by direct interviews with parents and teachers. Participants who took part in the activity said that by participating in this community service activity, they added knowledge and insight about family health, handling individual and family emotions, how to deal with the dangers of covid for families and especially for crew members. In addition, indirectly this activity is very helpful, especially for parents in improving the adaptability of their children.
Along with this activity, it was also found that there were several obstacles experienced by participants, namely network instability during the implementation of activities and being disturbed by other family members who were noisy during the implementation of activities that made them unfocused.
The principal and the team hope that this activity can be continued by the school, or other services, in order to improve the adaptability of autistic children not only during pandemic conditions but is expected to be applied in the future.