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Apr 29, 2019

Journey from Home to School

From Home to School

Away from her family for a better future, 14 years old Prachi (Name Changed) resides at Lioness Karnavati hostel for girls with disabilities, Vastrapur, Ahmedabad. Prachi was born deafblind (Low vision with moderate to profound hearing impairment).

Challenges of co-parenting can increase the amount of stress on marriage especially when there is a child with a disability at home. Family dynamics are further affected if one of the parents are addicted to alcohol or other drugs. There have been several cases wherein due to alcoholism, the addicted partner is not able to play their role and resort to aggression and physical abuse when drunk. This is what happened to Prachi’s parents. 6 over ago her parents separated because of Prachi’s father’s increasing alcohol addiction.

Been a single mother with no permanent source of income, it became difficult for Prachi’s mother to take proper care of her and provide for her needs. It was while visiting a civil hospital, one sensitized medical practitioner referred the concerned mother to Sense India’s partner organisation in Ahmedabad which runs a centre for children and young adults with deafblindness. Prachi was enrolled at the centre and started receiving the necessary services.

Before joining the programme though Prachi was independent in her daily living activities, she remained confined within the home and excluded from other children in the neighbourhood. Due to her deafblindness, she was not enrolled in any school and her mother was apprehensive to enrol her. Her only friends were papers and crayons colour.

Over the years Prachi has learnt to stay in a hostel and adjust with other girls. She now socializes with fellow hosteliers. On the academic front, Prachi has learnt to count, is able to identify colours, shapes, animals and vegetables. At the centre, she is getting regular training in sign language. Seeing her progress she has been enrolled in an inclusive school, where she is following the 4th-grade curriculum and has started to read and write. Her mother was given guidance in applying for Prachi’s disability certificate, school health card, bus pass and Aadhar card.

From living in isolation to a girl who now loves to explore the garden, visit restaurants and play games with her classmates Prachi’s mother is overwhelmed with her progress. She adds, “Prachi’s journey from her home to school is commendable. It is nothing short of a miracle for me that my daughter is learning.”

Feb 5, 2019

Chandan, My Inspiration!

Chanden – Is My inspiration 

(As narrated by his educator)

In my life I have met many children with disabilities but no one has inspired me the way Chanden did, when I began working with him in a home based programme I was confused from where to begin, as I was overwhelmed with grief when I got to know that he had lost his father and the mother was the only bread earner who had to take care of 3 children including Chanden Kanwar bai has raised her 3 children being the father and mother figure of the house, she says……… when my child Chanden was born to us, me and my husband were so happy to have him into our lives but then things did not remain the same, it was like our happiness was snatched away from us when we got to know that our son cannot see and hear. 

Living in a village and having very little at our disposal as we were daily wage earners, we had very little knowledge about our son’s disability. Lot of people took advantage of this and made money from the very little that we had. Being uneducated we only knew to look forward to one person for my sons cure and that is God, but people took advantage of us in the name of God. 

We visited doctors when we lost hope and to our despair the doctors said that there is no cure, we searched for school but did not find proper schooling for my son as he is totally blind and partially deaf, running from pillar to post in search of hope we were finally referred to Sense India's partner organisation, after what I experienced there it changed my entire approach towards my son. I feel now he can do a lot more and also be independent in his life. 

Let me introduce myself I am Sandhya and as mentioned earlier, yes… Chanden is my inspiration as having dual disability his approach towards life is so positive. He loves to learn new things every time I visit his home, he is a fast learner, he is slowly getting into vocational trades and is slowly developing money concept, he is also getting better at functional activities. I see him improving by day and know for a fact that he will achieve a lot in life and I will strive harder to give my very best for Chanden….. And yes… Chanden is my inspiration.

*name has been changed to preserve identies

Nov 12, 2018

Purav* Proves his Worth!

Purav with his mother
Purav with his mother

“Why do you even bring him from such a far distance?” asked the bus driver that used to drive Purav and his mother to Sense India’s centre. In that very moment, Purav’s mother took a decision, she wanted everyone around Purav to realize his mettle and she left no stone unturned to achieve this.

Due to a bout of Kabuki syndrome, microcephaly and rubella, Purav was affected by congenital deafblindness along with intellectual disability since birth. Initially he could not sit at one place for a long time, shouted to express his needs and was not able to stand without support. After guidance from All India Institutes of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Delhi his mother enrolled him in Sense India’s centre based programme for children with deafblindness.

His special educator, Ms Mishra, worked extensively in providing training and support to him and within a few months he began following simple instructions through sign language. He soon started interacting with his teachers and parents and express his needs by vocalization and pointing towards objects. He enjoys playing on therapy ball and instinctively follows illuminated toys.

His progress makes his mother proud. She fondly says, “Today, even that bus driver acknowledges how far my son has come in his journey towards independence. After coming to the centre regularly, he can walk by holding someone’s hand, eat solid food and indicate for his needs. I am extremely delighted.”

Apart from Purav’s mother, his aunt used to visit the centre regularly. Their contribution and our educators effort has been a defining point in his journey.



*names have been changed to maintain identity of the child

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