By end of month of May we received another amount of 466.54 USD, and we are thankful to you for this amazing gift.
To keep you informed about the progress on the ground, the school and the students are pioneers in the society that considers disabled children incapable and solely bringing shame to their families and communities. To date the school has provided education to more than 400 girls and boys with various complications. Until now 15 young men have gotten jobs. These children have broken the social stigma by showing that they are fully capable to become contributing members and an equal member of the society.
The education provided by the school is specifically designed to teach students Braille, sign language and other communication skills relevant in their daily lives. As the school is targeting deaf (speech-impaired children) and blind (visual –impaired children), it employs trained professionals with similar disabilities themselves to educate students. The core curriculum includes reading and writing as well as sign language to advance literacy and communication skills, and Braille language.
The school currently has 60 students between grades 9 to 11, 125 students in grades 5 to 8, 149 students in preliminary classes (between 1 to 4) and 39 students in preschool. In addition to these the school welcomes 27 students with brain trauma or neurological disasters – but still capable to sit, play, walk etc.
As the disabled people have been marginalized and ill-treated by the society due to socially constructed attitudes and values, the School for Disabled Children is a social transformation by itself. They communicate, play, have lunch and meet other children with similar or other types of disabilities in this school. They learn not only about the literacy and numeracy but many social behaviours and relationships that makes their daily lives easier and enjoyable.
The school started as an informal community-based association for mutual support for disabled children, so the nature of the school is community-based. Local educators have become teachers some of whom are disabled themselves and thus transmit their life skills to the students.
Community volunteers provide financial, physical and material support for the school. For example, end of 2013, local contributors have donated land and materials for the school to construct its own school building (while the school was renting a building until 2013). In 2014 the students were able to have specially constructed for them, a building of two floors that has enough space to contain 20 rooms in both floors.
The amount supported by you during this period was donated for food items to school, as this comes as first priority to provide lunch for the kids who stay daylong in the school, and are coming from very poor families.
For the school management, the school’s Parent-Teacher Association, the school’s board members and the Ferdous Foundation, all local and community-based, are involved. Our further plans in this area will involve construction of a play ground for the students and a small green area.
A deaf student expressing his happiness