Category Archives: Vydehi School of Rehabilitation

Employment For The Specially Abled – The Scenario And Possibilities

As per statistics around 2.1 % of India’s population is suffering from some kind of disabilities or challenges, which means these children will grow up into adults with special needs. Even though, many children with special needs are put into schools offering special education and have the ability to work in positions similar to their peers, only 10% of them are actually absorbed into the various job sectors. While there’s a dire need for the government and social community to take notice of this issue and work towards creating work opportunities for adults with special needs, here’s a look through some of the job profiles where adults with specials needs are working and well to say the least.

Hospitality – Be it cooking in the kitchen or housekeeping, the hospitality industry does welcome staff with special abilities. Though it isn’t that glamourous there are opportunities in this sector.

Arts – This is one such area where expertise can give enormous returns and fame too. As an artist people with special abilities can have a flourishing career and they could be their own boss too. Arts like painting, photography, sculpture, theatre could be one of the best options for career for people with special needs

Craft – Handcraft industry in India is doing really well and with ecommerce providing a big marketplace, working in the craft industry is also another work areas suitable for adults with special needs. Government does offer financial assistance for people looking to become entrepreneur in house handicraft industry.

Freelance – This could be for any sort of work which you could do sitting at home. Work from home opportunities in sectors for accounting, finance, medical transcription, graphic design or more could definitely be a big yes for adults with special needs.

Veterinary – You may get to see adults with special needs in veterinary clinics and the reason it adults with special needs can relate with animals in a much better way than humans. Apparently its true for even normal people, ain’t it? It could be as a veterinary doctor or groomer or even working in a local pet store, this profile could be quite a suit for them.

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India Tops The List Of Most Depresses Nations In The World

A report of 2018 says that India is at the top of the list of most depressed countries. Not a shocker, isn’t it? Though Indians are known to be adjusting people and content by nature, it comes to light that they are the most depressed too. Well, on one side we adjust ourselves easily to anything, be it less finances, bad roads, lack of infrastructure or pretty much anything for that matter. A study by National Care of medical Health (NCMH) around 6.5 % of Indians suffer from a serious mental conditions irrespective of being rural or urban. The government is carrying of awareness programs but there is a scarcity of psychologists and psychiatrists as well as mental health doctors. Even the suicide rate as reported in 2014 was one in 1 lacs has gone up and now the average comes to around 10.9 per lac. Even the average age of suicide is under 44 years of age.

India Tops The List Of Most Depresses Nations In The World

The other countries included in the list include China, Brazil, United States, Russia, Indonesia, Pakistan, to name a few. Here’s an overview of the mental health scenario in these countries.

Pakistan – As startling as it may seem, there are only 750 professional psychiatrists as per a report of the year 2012. Furthermore, due to the taboo around mental health most of the cases are not even reported and hence even the exact number of people suffering from mental conditions is not known.

USA – Yes, off-course mental health is a common issues in one of the most powerful nations of the world, United States of America. The reason is again scarcity of mental health professionals and only about 41% of those suffering from these conditions are able to get treated. Apparently, many do not take it seriously and ignore it expecting to get over it without treatment.

China – China is one of the most affected countries for mental health conditions again. Around 91.8 % of the citizens are known to be suffering from one or the other mental condition particularly depression and that they do not bother about getting medical assistance at all. C

Brazil – Another other country to have the most number of depressed people in the world is Latin America. The reason behind it is social conditions like homelessness, poverty, migration issues, violence and more. Hence, most of the population here is under high stress and anxiety.

Indonesia – The figures are lower in Indonesia compared to the others in the list but enough to rate it under the clutches of the mental health disorder monster. As per statistics around 6 percent of the population over 15 years of age suffers from mental conditions.

Well, it’s not that the Government of these countries ain’t swinging into action but its high time even the citizens take mental health as seriously as we take physical health as it is equally helps our over-all wellbeing.

*Sourced from Internet

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All You Need To Know About Dealing With Mental Health Issues For The Young!

As per statistics of India, the working generation in India is already into the clutches of the mental health issues. A study of 2015 shows that around 42.5% working professionals of private sector in India suffer from mental health issues like anxiety and depression. Furthermore, due to the stigma around mental health, most people have been refraining from taking appropriate treatment and ignoring it away. Though, in urban areas the situation is changing and people are coming to terms with the fact that like the physical body needs medical attention when not well, similarly our mind needs a mental health expert when under stress or if somethings not right with it. As simple as that.

What is more alarming is The World health organization’s estimate that India could suffer economic losses amounting to 1.03 trillion dollars on account of mental health issues during the period of 2012 and 2030. Another study reveals that around 71% of Indians consider mental conditions as a taboo. The Wall Street Journal in its 2016 report revealed that Indians work for 52 hours every week and its way to high compared to their peers across 25 countries. In Indian working women the rate of psychiatric morbidity is 38% compared to 26% non-working women.

At work there’s a lot of stress resulting from deadline and target achievement, office politics and bullying and then there’s personal issues like finances, relationships and family problems making it a perfect breeding arena for mental health illnesses. Talking about management of mental conditions, there is definitely a way out but it has to be worked upon at a personal as well as a professional level.

Professionally, the employers need to understand that it is as simple as better mental equals to better quality and better productivity. So, there have to be policies put into place and the employees need to be given a healthy working environment.

On a personal basis consulting a good therapist, engaging into hobbies post work, help and support from family besides medication can help in resolving mental health conditions. The most important point to be kept in mind around mental health is that the earlier you work on your condition the better. Hence, early intervention for childhood mental health conditions can work really well for children born with mental health issues and help them improve quality of life.

Well, it’s high time that we focus on our mental health with the same interest as we focus on the bodily health because mental health issues are bound to affect our physical well-being also, without any doubt.

*Sourced from Internet

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Parenting a Child With Hearing Loss

Imagine a life where you aren’t able to express yourself through words. Not easy to imagine, right? The fact though is that many children in India and across the world are known to suffer from hearing loss. As per statistics in India, over 63 million people in India are deaf and it is known to be the second most common cause of disability in India. Furthermore, education of the children suffering from auditory loss is a concern because for every 20 lakh deaf children on 25-300 interpreters are available. While communication is a difficulty for people with hearing loss, it makes it all the more overwhelming for kids because they want to communicate so much and aren’t able to do so.

Parenting a Child With Hearing Loss

Having a child with auditory loss is again disastrous news for parents when every parent longs to hear their child call them dad or mom. The ideal solution is to observe and go for expert advice. An early diagnosis could go a long way in helping your child deal with this disability. Hearing aids are the preliminary solutions that could help your child drastically. Other hearing loss treatments for children include cochlear implants that help in development of the language and speech of the child of hearing aids are not so helpful.

Benefits of Early Intervention

Early intervention works well with children having auditory loss issues. If parents follow certain guidelines while communication with their children, this could work wonders for your child in the later years.

  1. Make eye contact while talking to your child. If you are not making eye contact, are looking down or doing something else like reading a newspaper then it could be difficult for the child.

  2. Keep a distance of around 1-5 meters from your child and face your child. This way your child can see you and read your lips and understand your expressions.

  3. Do not talk to your child while chewing or eating. This could confuse your child as he or she would not be able to ready the lips and even the pronunciation could be different for a child wearing hearing aids.

  4. Do not let other sounds interfere with your talk when communicating with your child. So, switch off background stuff like TV, music systems, etc., because it would definitely confuse your child.

  5. Lastly but most importantly, because your child can’t hear doesn’t mean you shout into them. Talk softly and clearly so they can read you to understand. Shouting wouldn’t be of any use. If your child is facing difficulty understanding, try rephrasing your sentence.

Well, it is difficult to parent a child with auditory loss but if you begin early on and follow the guidelines given above, you should be able to make a notable difference in the life as far as communication is concerned.

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An Inspiring Journey of a Journalist turned Special Educator

Sonalee Shyamsunder, a political science postgraduate, and human rights diploma used to work as a reporter, before a heart-wrenching incident she witnessed changed her life and drove her to set up a foundation for kids with special needs called ‘Urmi foundation.’ She was working as a reporter on a project where she had to visit one of the slums in Mumbai. There she saw a little girl with hands tied in a murky house. This girl was trying to free herself and there was no one to attend. Though she was shocked, she went away. But, soon was back as she could not resist to find out more. She came back to see that the child was eating her own excreta. This girl had Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). She then spoke to her parents and came to know that they were unable to manage the child as she used to run around, was always hungry and they tied her because they were scared that she would hurt herself. But, that incident shook her from within and this is when she decided to quit her job and work towards the upliftment of kids with special needs. She was 35 when she started the Urmi foundation for the kids with disabilities. As per Sonalee, parents living in slums are not aware of mental health conditions in kids and due to lack of awareness around the same, they often treat their kids differently like locking them out of fear or frustration. They’re not even aware that teaching them life skills can be of great help to these kids.

Though she was having a job that paid her well, the incident led her to take a journey within and work around social challenges. As per Sonalee it was never a one day job to start a social foundation and that she had been a witness of many instances that kept fueling her thoughts of starting such an enterprise. As a student, she already had spent over three years volunteering at the Baba Amte Ashram in Mumbai. Besides, she also worked with children living in red light areas of Mumbai through the organization Prerna. All these experiences coupled together made her realize that she needs to do something substantial for children.

Through the Urmi foundation, Sonalee and her team want to create an environment that is adaptive and inclusive for children of special needs and help them grow academically. Her way is to make things easy for these kids. For example, they found that kids with speech disabilities were not able to express their problems to the doctor easily. So, the created digital emojis for them, that include body parts and select expressions. They even provided these signs to doctors of government hospitals so that the kids could communicate with the doctors about their pain easily. Well, this is just the beginning for Sonalee as she plans to open a special education school in the red light area for kids here, first of its kind, as she thinks these kids compared to others are more prone to physical mental or sexual abuse. And to turn this dream into reality she is working with other people and trying to get like-minded ones on board as well.

*Sourced from Internet


Common Problems And Challenges Faced By Children With Special Needs In Rural Areas

Special needs come into picture when the child is facing conditions that include developmental delays, psychiatric conditions, medical conditions as well as congenital conditions where-in additional support is needed for a child to unleash his/her own potential.

Well, parenting a child with special needs is an uphill task. But, with school and community support can be managed in a better way in urban areas. The task becomes really steep when you are in rural or remote areas and it’s not easy for the parents or children. There are a lot more problems that hinder the quality of life and development of children with special needs in rural areas. Here’s a look through some of the main challenges that children with special needs in a rural setting have to face –

special education needs

Lack of Individual attention – This is one of the most common challenges faced by children with special needs. Obviously, schools with a larger setup have more resources including special education aids that help teachers and special educators work around with special children. While working in rural setups with lack of infrastructure and resources, it is not possible to work with every special child on an individual basis.

Lack of Staff – As rural setups of schools are in remote areas, bringing in professional staff isn’t easy. Staying in such places is rarely a preferred choice. In cities professionals have their own social life at the end of the day or week where they hang out with friends, watch movies together, feel rejuvenated get ready for the next day. But, that’s not the case in rural areas leading to teachers and staff feeling isolated or lonely. Hence, there is scarcity of staff and the existing ones have to shuffle across multiple locations making it exhaustive for them as well.

Lack of Training – A special education needs to be dealt with multiple disabilities at a time. At remote locations, it becomes tougher to deal with it and hence, training the teachers for managing this task properly individual training programs need to be implemented.

Parental Support – Some parents, particularly in rural areas are ignorant about special needs and at times not interested as well in providing the needed support to them. On the flip side, even overtly caring parents can make it difficult for the teachers and educators to work around these children. But, adequate parental support can help make the life of a child with special needs much better and help the kids bloom to their fullest.

Low Packages – While teachers are given good packages in many good schools, specials educators are not paid the same comparatively, while their task is much tougher because they are already dealing with kids who need additional support with learning. This also is a factor that is resulting in scarcity of special educator jobs.

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Five Vital Points Parents Of Special Kids Need To Know

India, a country that is still in its developing stage, is a home for over 27 million kids who are differently abled. Call them kids with special needs, differently abled or challenged, it only means that these kids need additional external help or support to do the same things which their peers can do without. Though, the confusion around the learning, physical or mental disabilities and slow growth as well as difficulties around managing behavior and emotions are always there. So, as a parent of a differently abled child is primarily understood that you have to put atleast two times the effort parents put for their children who are abled. Here are a few points to help you handle your child when it comes to interacting as well as education him or her.

Five Vital Points Parents Of Special Kids Need To Know

Do not consider your child any lesser – Because the child has special needs does not mean that he or she is any lesser or inferior to other kids. The parent is the first person to understand this, forget others. This will help you work with your child with an open mind and understand them better.

Do not consider yourself different – Though you need to obviously put in more effort than other parents, it’s not that it makes you different from others. There are abled children who need more parental support as well. Every child is different requires to be handled differently.

It’s exhaustive, be ready – Child with learning disabilities require attention on a continuous basis more so form the mother. You will have to be on your toes all the time and this can get quite exhaustive. Be ready for it, cause it will definitely be a boon for the kids in the later years.

Best or Worst, Stand strong – With children you could have to go through different phases, some of them making you really happy and content while some very exhaustive and worse as well. There could be days that go by in peace and some full of tantrums and crankiness. You might see no results for long also even if you put all effort. Stay strong and believe in yourself and your child.

Enjoy every moment – It’s not about the moments lived but the life in the moments. So, even when every-day you on your toes working with your child, try to enjoy the moments you spend together and create memories that help your child throughout their lives.

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Difference Between Special Needs And Disabilities – An Overview

Is there any difference between the two terms or are they used interchangeably? The language/ terms used by schools as well as support services does confuse many parents and make them ponder around the difference between disability and special needs.

Speaking about the term Disability, it is more about physical and mental inabilities while special needs are related to learning disabilities. There is one more term – differently-abled, which is used for mental as well as physical disabilities.

Difference Between Special Needs And Disabilities

Special needs actually do mean special education needs as children with learning disabilities need additional support as compared to their peers. Examples of special education needs include -

  1. Social, Behavioral and emotional difficulties

  2. Multiple learning difficulties

  3. Moderate learning problems

  4. Speech, communication and language needs

  5. Autism spectrum disorders

  6. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and specific learning disabilities

  7. Multi-sensory impairment

Disabilities include all the physical and mental disabilities that affect their daily routine activities. As per statistics, 2.9 Million Children in India are disabled. Youngsters, particularly children have complex needs and therefore require assistance. The assistance includes support around emotional, intellectual or behavioral, health and intellectual development.

  1. Physical disability

  2. Communication disorder of severe nature

  3. Developmental delay at pre-school

  4. Long term learning difficulty

  5. Sensory impairment like visual, deafness and blindness

  6. Autism Spectrum disorder

  7. Multiple complex and chronic conditions

Hence, when you use the term disabilities you are apparently talking about physical and mental inabilities and when you are talking about special needs, it’s actually about the needs of children around managing learning disabilities generally.

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Books For Kids With Special Needs – An Overview

There is a pool of books available across the world addressing the needs of special children. Some of the well-known ones include the likes of Susan Laughs, Special Way by Arlene Maguire. Just because by Rebecca Elliott and many more. But, in India to be frank, being differently abled is a taboo even now. Though the fog is clearing and parents are coming to terms with the fact around kids with specials needs, the work repertoire that is available abroad is even today a rare sight in India.

Books For Kids With Special Needs

But, there are people who are well aware of the need of books for this huge chunk of children that amounts to over 2 million between the age group of 0 to 6 years. Obviously, the population is more in rural India compared to urban India mainly due to lack of infrastructure. One such initiative by the Tata Trust is the Parag initiative. The objective of this project is to work with Indian authors and publish books on children with special needs. As per one of the project heads, their objective was not only to work around creating books for kids with special needs but in a way that it feels as if the books are for any other child on earth. They had apparently read some books, which depicted kids with special needs in a heroic manner and whatever they do as magical is what they did not want. They wanted to share good stories but not emphasizing on disabilities. The Parag project also happened to create a contest for the same alongside wherein they received over 120 entries and published four out of them. Their criteria on judging the books was primarily the entertainment value besides that these stories are not judgmental about children with special needs. The author of the book Simply Nanju, Zainab Sulaiman said that the trend was slowly seeping in peoples mind and more authors are coming out with stories that are about children with special needs but not with the tag of being special.

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Here are snippets into few books published by Duckbill publishers around children with special needs

Simply Nanju – Authored by Zainab Sulaiman, this book is a story of a little boy called Nanju with spinal defect. He studies in a school for children with special needs and is on a mission to find out who in his school are trying to steal and tear pages from notebooks for class toppers. So, though this story weaves around a boy with special needs is about handling bullying and pressures from peers as school like another normal school.

Vibhuti Cat –Written by Shikhandin, this book is about a boy called Magesh who talks less due to communication skills issues but is focused and good at art. How he carves out his own path through art and particularly drawing pictures of cats.

These are just two examples

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5 Special Education Needs In Classroom You Need To Know

Children with special needs do require classroom setup that takes care of all their needs. Most schools have a team of teachers and special educators working together and a program designed for the same, as well. It is a fact that if children with special needs are provided the environment and assistance required, they are capable of achieving the same feat as their peers.

Lets run through some of the classroom needs.

5 Special Education Needs In Classroom You Need To Know

  1. Interaction and Communication

Children with special needs often find it difficult to talk interact as well as communicate with people around them. Also, known as speech, language and communication needs, the difficulties that these children face include -

  1. Talking to others on topics chosen by others

  2. Communicating with peers when in a group

  3. Making friends and keeping friendships that last

  4. Deal with happenings around them like sensations, noise or smell

  5. Deal with doing things another way then they are used to

  1. Learning and Cognitive

  1. Issues with memorizing important words

  2. Taking more time than usual peers to learn skills

  3. Taking more time than usual to answer questions

  4. Difficulty understanding letter sounds and spellings

  1. Social, Mental and Emotional

These difficulties including managing self as far as behavior is concerned and expressing emotions as well as socializing and include -

  1. Difficulty following instructions and listening

  2. Difficulty making new friends

  1. Physical and Sensory

This includes managing oneself with medical assistance or support.

Having said that, children with special needs are capable of living quality and independent life and perform like other peers of theirs. The only thing they need is a bit of extra support and help. Just like creepers need support to climb and with the support they flower and bear fruits. There are some plants that do the same without support.  Children with special needs simply need support and cooperation from the teachers, psychologists, special educators as well as therapists to help them bloom to the fullest. As simple as that.

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