U&I

INTRODUCTION Our journey began in May 2009, when a few friends from a local youth group visited a home for mentally challenged boys in Bangalore. From a small group of friends, to becoming a movement that hundreds of people would get involved in and to eventually becoming an organisation that would have projects across the city of Bangalore - no one would have guessed that this was how things would eventually turn out. Even today, we're amazed at all that's happened in the last two years & are excited about all that is to come. Since our inception in January 2011, we have focused most of our activities towards the education of underprivileged and special needs children. We have worked ...
Dec 11, 2014

The Institute for Mentally Handicapped Children

Naveen
Naveen

The Institute for Mentally handicapped children (IMHC) currently houses 85 boys with special needs who have been abandoned by their families or lost and brought to the Institute. Working with the boys in a State run Home is bound to be challenging with everyday bringing us new issues, experiences and situations. Thank you so much for supporting our work at the Institute and believing in the work we do for these amazing boys.

Some of the main highlights and challenges are:

  • Health & Hygiene - 20 severe and profoundly challenged boys are given a bath and brushed every morning by the assistant carers. Grooming with nail care has been going on every week to ensure all boys have clean cut nails. A new government doctor has been appointed to ensure good health of the boys on a regular basis. Due to weather changes a few boys have been down with fever and common colds.
  • Therapy & Activities - The boys have been doing paper art and slowly increasing the difficulty level with their fine motor skills. They have also started making Christmas decorations to bring in some Christmas cheer at the Institute. They are making snowflakes, candy canes and Christmas trees. The boys who are profoundly challenged are given toys and engaged throughout the day in play school by the assistant carers. Yoga for 10 boys is being done every day in the morning before breakfast. The boys have learnt 10 asanas and end with meditation.
  • Physiotherapy – 10 boys have been undergoing physiotherapy every day for 20 minutes each. A majority of the boys have improved balance and gait through vigorous physiotherapy.
  • Volunteering at the Institute – The volunteers have been doing curriculum with the boys on a 1:3 ratio. Some of the boys were reassessed and progress was noted. A few new skill based activities for fine motor skills were designed.
  • Events at the Institute – A Christmas carnival is being planned for the boys in December. The boys will have rides, popcorn, cotton candy, Christmas carols and Santa with Christmas gifts!

Story of the month:

A lot of our boys are sent to the Men’s Complex once they are 21 years. One boy who was sent recently was Naveen. Naveen was a part of the special needs classes that were conducted every day by the teachers hired by U&I. He was a great learner and always had a smile on his face. He is a soft spoken boy so the teachers had to train their ears to hear him in class. One of Naveen’s favourite things to do was sing nursery rhymes. He was the happiest and most active during these sessions.

After Naveen got shifted to the Men’s complex, the teachers did not get to see him for nearly a month. One day, the teachers decided to visit the complex and meet with all the boys. When they entered the room where the boys were seated, Naveen quickly got up, ran up to the teachers and started doing the actions for the rhyme “chubby cheeks”! The teachers were both surprised and extremely happy to see that he still remembered his rhymes and was excited about them as well.

It was truly an inspiring moment for our teachers. Teaching the boys the same rhymes, numbers and alphabets every day requires a lot of patience. On most days, they are unsure if what they teach is actually being grasped by all the boys. On such days, they now remember Naveen and know that even a small rhyme is a happy memory in the lives of our boys. It is truly humbling to know we are the reason the boys smile with fond memories of days they have spent with us in learning.

Plans for the next few months include starting basic speech therapy for a few boys by the special needs teachers, buying new equipment for physiotherapy and hiring more assistant carers.

We are continuously striving to make the lives of the boys a little bit better every day. On the challenging days we take a moment to remember and witness the smile on their faces and that is always enough reason to continue to make a difference in every way we can!

Oct 31, 2014

U&I Teach Report

Dear Friend and Partners of U&I

We've had a great start to a new academic year and are thrilled to share this journey with you! This year, we have partnered with 4 more organisations, set up new Learning Centres in their facilities and have also increased the teaching courses in Learning Centres of already existing partners. As of today the U&I Teach Programme has 25 classes a week, offering English and Tuition lessons in 11 Learning Centres set up in partnership with 8 organisations here in Bangalore. 

A highly valued partner in the U&I Teach programme this year is the Flippen Group. Established in 1991, the Flippen Group is the largest educator training organisation in North America today and has been working in countries across the globe, changing the learning environments in schools and learning institutions. We have been immensely blessed to have trainers from the Flippen Group work with us to customise classroom management tools to fit the needs of our Learning Centres. They also conducted a 2-day training session for all the volunteer leaders and staff and we have since then implemented these tools in all our Learning Centres. 

We began the academic year with an intensive 2-day workshop for all the volunteer leaders during which they were given leadership training, introduced to the various roles within the U&I Teach Programme, the tools that would help them work efficiently and the value of teams which they learnt through a number of fun team-building activities. 
We also had the Annual Orientation for the 500 volunteers who have signed up for this year. It was a day of much learning, inspiration and lots of fun. Smaller orientations were also conducted to introduce the volunteers to the curriculum, schedules and their roles for the year.
Here is an overview of all our Learning Centres, the children we reach and the courses we teach.
  • Ashwini Charitable Trust: This is an NGO that provides non-formal education to the underprivileged children. The English course we run here has 43 students from Standards 3 to 7 and the Tuition course has 24 students from Standards 8 to 10. 
  • Good Shepherd Home: This is one of our new Learning Centres and it is an orphanage run by the nuns of the Good Shepherd Convent. These girls study in a nearby government school. We teach 25 girls in our English course here. 
  • Citizen's Foundation: This is also one of our new Learning Centres. It is an orphanage that provides accommodation, food and schooling to orphans. They currently have 26 students who are enrolled in our English course.
  • Chaitanya: Chaitanya is run by the Sisters of the Good Shepherd Convent. It is a hostel for young girls studying in St. Euphrasias High School. We have 24 students in the English as well as the Tuition Course that we run here. 
  • Sparsha Trust: A new partner of U&I, Sparsha Trust is a home for children who have been abandoned, orphaned or neglected by their family and community. Most of the children at the home have never been to a school or have dropped out after a couple of years. We teach English to the 25 children in this home using a very basic curriculum since these children have missed a number of years of schooling. 
  • Karunalaya: Karunalaya is a home for 24 underprivileged children. The home is run by an elderly couple who provide for the shelter, education and medical care of these children. Here we conduct both English and Tuition classes 
  • Refugee Home: The Refugee Home is the 4th new Learning Centre Partner and it is a home for children rescued from trafficking. It has 28 children at present for whom we conduct English classes and also help with school work. 
  • Snehadeep Trust: This is a home and training institute for visually impaired students. At present there are 22 students here who are taught their course work in a Tuitions programme run by U&I.

We are really looking forward to seeing how this year progresses and the positive impact its going to have on these wonderful children. All this is made possible by your continued support and encouragement. Thank you once again for believing in what we do here at U&I and for partnering with us to BE THE CHANGE within our communities in need.

Sep 22, 2014

U&I Teach Report May - Aug 2014

Dear Friend and Partner of U&I

We've had a great start to a new academic year and are thrilled to share this journey with you! We have partnered with 4 more organisations, setting up new Learning Centres in their facilities and have also increased the teaching courses in Learning Centres of already existing partners. As of today the U&I Teach Programme has 25 classes a week, offering English and Tuition lessons in 11 Learning Centres set up in partnership with 8 organisations here in Bangalore. 

A highly valued partner in the U&I Teach programme this year is the Flippen Group. Established in 1991, the Flippen Group the largest educator training organisation in North America today and has been working in countries across the globe, changing the learning environments in schools and learning institutions. We have been immensely blessed to have trainers from the Flippen Group work with us to customise classroom management tools to fit the needs of our Learning Centres. They also conducted a 2-day training session for all the volunteer leaders and staff and we have since then implemented these tools in all our Learning Centres. 

We began the academic year with an intensive 2-day workshop for all the volunteer leaders during which they were given leadership training, introduced to the various roles within the U&I Teach Programme, the tools that would help them work efficiently and the value of teams which they learnt through a number of fun team-building activities. 
We also had the Annual Orientation for the 500 volunteers who have signed up for this year. It was a day of much learning, inspiration and lots of fun. Smaller orientations were also conducted to introduce the volunteers to the curriculum, schedules and their roles for the year.
Here is an overview of all our Learning Centres, the children we reach and the courses we teach.
  • Ashwini Charitable Trust: This is an NGO that provides non-formal education to the underprivileged children. The English course we run here has 43 students from Standards 3 to 7 and the Tuition course has 24 students from Standards 8 to 10. 
  • Good Shepherd Home: This is one of our new Learning Centres and it is an orphanage run by the nuns of the Good Shepherd Convent. These girls study in a nearby government school. We teach 25 girls in our English course here. 
  • Citizen's Foundation: This is also one of our new Learning Centres. It is an orphanage that provides accommodation, food and schooling to orphans. They currently have 26 students who are enrolled in our English course.
  • Chaitanya: Chaitanya is run by the Sisters of the Good Shepherd Convent. It is a hostel for young girls studying in St. Euphrasias High School. We have 24 students in the English as well as the Tuition Course that we run here. 
  • Sparsha Trust: A new partner of U&I, Sparsha Trust is a home for children who have been abandoned, orphaned or neglected by their family and community. Most of the children at the home have never been to a school or have dropped out after a couple of years. We teach English to the 25 children in this home using a very basic curriculum since these children have missed a number of years of schooling. 
  • Karunalaya: Karunalaya is a home for 24 underprivileged children. The home is run by an elderly couple who provide for the shelter, education and medical care of these children. Here we conduct both English and Tuition classes 
  • Refugee Home: The Refugee Home is the 4th new Learning Centre Partner and it is a home for children rescued from trafficking. It has 28 children at present for whom we conduct English classes and also help with school work. 
  • Snehadeep Trust: This is a home and training institute for visually impaired students. At present there are 22 students here who are taught their course work in a Tuitions programme run by U&I.

We are really looking forward to this year and the positive impact its going to have on these wonderful children. All this is made possible by your continued support and encouragement. Thank you once again for believing in what we do here at U&I and for partnering with us to BE THE CHANGE within our communities in need.

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