PunkinFutz, the award winning company that makes sensory play products and accessories and the New York State Occupational Therapy Association (NYSOTA) announced today the launch of their Entrepreneurial Partnership. The partnership will leverage the respective strengths of NYSOTA and PunkinFutz, building new joint ventures to extend the value of occupational therapy, creative play and adaptive employment. The partnership will also help to provide education and resources for NYSOTA’S newly-formed New York State Occupational Therapy Entrepreneurial Collective (NYSOTEC).

NYSOTEC will support NYSOTA members in leveraging their occupational therapy expertise and creative know-how through entrepreneurship to meet the challenges of our new normal. “Adapting to a new set of circumstances is the superpower of an occupational therapy practitioner,” says NYSOTA president Flo Hannes, MS, OTR, FAOTA. “Learning to adapt is exactly what we all need right now, as everyone, in all aspects of life, adapts to our new normal. Working with PunkinFutz, a company that shares that vision and commitment and has been a longstanding supporter of NYSOTA, is a true win-win for all of us.”

“Since its inception, PunkinFutz has partnered with occupational therapy practitioners in helping children and adults with adaptive needs realize their full potential. Our partnership with NYSOTA is truly an extension of our joint efforts and commitment to the profession,” says company founder and CEO Lisa Radcliffe.

Launch of Seminar Series

As part of their partnership, NYSOTA and PunkinFutz are collaborating on a series of seminars to help occupational therapy practitioners leverage their skills in new ways to open new career paths. “Every occupational therapy practitioner I have ever met has an innovative new product idea, but often doesn’t know how to bring it to market. That’s where we can help,” says Radcliffe. She will be leading classes related to business development, from product design and branding through sales and marketing strategies. “And, if you don’t want to strike out on your own, the seminars provide a terrific opportunity to see where occupational therapy training can be leveraged for non-traditional career opportunities,” she adds.

Affiliate Programs, Research and Field Placement on the Horizon

In addition to the training seminars, PunkinFutz and NYSOTA are collaborating on an Affiliates Program, original research and much-needed field placement opportunities. In all cases, occupational therapy practitioners are being encouraged and supported in thinking outside the box to find new ways to apply their training and talents.

“These initiatives set a new standard for our members, create unique and exciting new opportunities for growth and professional development, and champion our very proactive approach to addressing the new landscape ahead,” says Hannes.

PunkinFutz continues to help parents navigate the unique challenges they face with work and children at home and in light of the international COVID-19 pandemic with its weekly Wednesdays at Noon FACEBOOK discussion on timely topics, recommendations and best practices. It also offers Friday Recess at Four, end of week sessions designed for parent and child together. Each Monday, its ever-popular weekly Survival Guide online newsletter is packed with New York City-based community resources, events, tips, video expert comments and support all in one place. To access the most recent information please visit https://punkinfutz.com/.

About PunkinFutz:
Launched in 2016, PunkinFutz uses universal design to create sensory play products for children with a broad range of physical, sensory, developmental and emotional needs. PunkinFutz products promote individual expression, creativity and imagination. All PunkinFutz original products are manufactured in the USA in supportive and adaptive workplaces using the highest quality materials and responsible sourcing. The company employs a fully diverse and adaptive workforce. PunkinFutz has won eleven awards for its innovative products and is a member of the Toy Industry Association (TIA). Founder Lisa Radcliffe is a member of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), the New York State Occupational Therapy Association (NYSOTA) and Council for Exceptional Children (CEC). All PunkinFutz products meet ASTM F963 standards.

The New York State Occupational Therapy Association (NYSOTA) is the only professional organization for occupational therapy in New York State. NYSOTA was formed as a membership organization in 1959 with the following mission: to promote the profession of occupational therapy, advance the standards of education and training in this field, promote research, and advocate for practitioners, educators, and students in New York State. NYSOTA works to achieve its mission through advocacy efforts, professional development, networking opportunities, and a wealth of resources and information designed to enhance members’ knowledge and support their practice.