In the past one year we feel very humbled and touched that we have been able to grow our Special Needs Program at both our centers at Beckbagan and Jan Seva
UMEED, as we now call our centre at Beckbagan, has flourished into an integrated program under the able supervision and running of a very committed team of experienced Board Members, Doctors, Administrator, Coordinator, Staff and Special Educators along with Physiotherapists and loving Caregivers who are like mothers in the lives of these orphan children.
Children with Special Needs require a platform to learn things the way they comprehend, and each child’s need is different. So as a result, when we impart a specific goal oriented program to each child the results are amazing!
We have started a program of total inclusion, where apart from our 10 special needs children 7 normal children living at the premises, have also been included in the classroom. These are children from the age of 2-4 years of age. They are Sejal, Joey, Amrita, Juhi, Rani, Shukla and Anurag. Shukla and Anurag are siblings who were sent to our Society by the Child Welfare Committee. Rani’s father had abandoned the family and she was left to live with her mother on the streets who subsequently died from Tuberculosis. She had no family to look after her and was sent to us by the Child Welfare Committee.
We have also started free services for disable children from the Community who were identified at our free Leela Clinic for the Community.
Two new children with Mental Retardation have joined our program. One child –11 year old, Suman has been introduced to us by Hope Foundation, where he was attending the crèche program. He was brought to us to avail of specialized intervention and development of his self help skills. Now after 11 months he has shown improvement. His behavioral disorder has improved and his restlessness has reduced with occupational therapy.
9 year old Zeenat had come into our free Leela Clinic for the underprivileged section of society. Our doctor referred her to our program and she has been attending it regularly for the past 4 months. She has slight mental retardation and has never been introduced to any form of rehabilitation. She has shown remarkable progress and enjoys coming to our classes.
Shabnam with Down’s Syndrome joined our evening classes and is thoroughly enjoying herself. Her father is no more. She is not attending any other institution.
The constant support of Hope Foundation enables us to provide a well structured and professional input to the challenged child which has made a marked difference in their lives and the lives of the families of the above three children.
We have strived hard to build up a well equipped centre for children with special needs. Special furniture, teaching aids to improve communication and appropriate intervention have been provided.
21 year old Jamuna, one of our orphan children, with mental retardation, was living at ICOD for the past couple of years. She took very ill and was admitted to Hope Hospital by us and is now under special care at SICW. She has suffered a setback and is now dealing with Cerebral Palsy too. It is extremely difficult for her but we are trying our best with round the clock Doctors, Physiotherapy and Caregivers to manage her.
Coordination and counseling from time to time is followed to sustain the Project in a holistic manner. Each personnel strives to rehabilitate the children with Special Needs (Physical and Mental challenges) and empower them to be as self reliant as possible. As they become more self reliant these children will finally be placed with adoptive families. Our little Chandrani has joined her family in Italy and is settling down well in their love and care. Finally Sejal, Joey and Amrita were all adopted and joined their loving forever families.
With professional input and a good team of Doctors, we hope to reduce the number of children with disability at an early detection and give every child a platform to progress up to their optimum level of potential in all development areas. More professional approach in assessing and providing intervention has been introduced. All 17 children, of which 4 have been adopted, have developed their academic levels. We worked towards making children with disability more independent in their functional need areas. Emotionally they are stronger. Their social skills have developed further. Their ability to communicate has improved. Their self help skills and confidence has developed making them more independent. Appropriate therapies, like physiotherapy with appropriate prosthetics, along with intervention have made them physically more able.
We have believed that every child, irrespective of his or her limitation, has a right to education and the right to communicate. We now have 2 children Samita and Runi attending the Institute of Cerebral Palsy and one child Sharda will be joining soon. Two children Riya and Rashmi have been admitted to our UDAAN program at Jan Seva. We introduced a lot of co-curricular and extra-curricular activities. We celebrated festivals and birthdays to bring joy and fun element into the lives of the children. We went for outings and picnics and the children all had a great time.
It is our Goal that these children will join the mainstream society, develop their skills, achieve confidence, independence and will communicate effectively proving themselves to be “Able” and finally be placed with adoptive families. Another year gone by and our journey continues…