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 four 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 be...
Mar 12, 2015

U&I Care Report

Chian
Chian

At U&I Care, our vision is to transform institutional care in India. U&I as- sists in the care and rehabilitation of 85 mentally challenged boys at the Institute of Mentally Handicapped Children (a state run institution). With 8 staff working full time on this project, U&I provides medical care, physiotherapy, occupational ther- apy and grooming for the boys at the Home. In the last four years, U&I has made a tremendous impact on the level of care and rehabilitation provided to these aban- doned boys.

Chian is a quiet boy. He likes to isolate himself and never interacts with anyone. It has been years since he has spoken. During a couple of group activities, the teachers tried to talk with Chian. They found that he finds it incredibly difficult to talk and express himself due to the lack of attention throughout his life. This led the teachers to engage Chian in rigorous speech therapy. Now, he is able to whisper simple words such as, “hi”, “bye”, and “yes”. When he sees someone he is able to greet them, smile, shake hands with them and even attempt to talk. It is amazing to watch Chian grow. His increased confidence and participation in activities is en- couraging.

The next couple of months look promising. We plan on profiling and assess- ing the boys who require speech therapy, we hope to teach the mildly challenged boys to tell time and to toilet train the boys with severe/profound mental chal- lenges. One of our main focuses was to improve group interaction among the boys. We engaged the boys in group activities such as storytelling, identifying colours and objects. During vocational therapy class the boys made gift covers and cards. The boys also got to play sports. This month they played cricket. Our volunteers are dedicated as ever. They will be focusing on motor skills, reactions to the envi- ronment and interaction skills for the next three months.

Every day at the Home, our team discovers new ways of helping the boys and making it more comfortable for the boys. You help make these boys smile. Thank you so much for supporting our work at the Institute and believing in the work we do for these amazing boys. 

Jan 28, 2015

World 10K Run - Quarterly Report

Prajwal’s mental age is between 3-6. Prajwal has weak legs and cannot stand or walk for prolonged periods of time, but this has never stopped him from trying. The Government Home for the Mentally Challenged Boys has a strict routine. Through the week they have physiotherapists working with them and on Sundays, the volunteers visit them. Their Sunday routine consists of an hour of curriculum, a 20 minutes dance session and finally snack time. During classes, Prajwal prefers to take a back seat until its time to dance. He is ecstatic and gives you his hands in order to be ferried out to the corridor where the other boys are dancing. Since Prajwal’s legs are quite weak he cannot stand for a very long time so he prefers to sit and listen to the music and shake his hands, if he’s feeling extra bubbly, he usually gives you his palms and expects you to dance with him while he sits and shakes in excitement. One of our most dedicated volunteers who spends time with Prajwal every Sunday was excited to share her experience, “Prajwal has the most contagious laugh you’ll ever hear, I believe it’s the one time he is truly happy. I can confidently say that I’m at my happiest when I’m learning from the boys because we, as volunteers, can only give them so much but they in turn teach us humility and help us serve humanity.”                     

As we inch closer to the end of the academic year, U&I is extremely proud of our 350 dedicated volunteers and the work that they have been able to accomplish. We realize that we have been able to create niches of change because of our volunteers, our children and people like you. With about eight weeks of academics ahead of us, we are looking forward to a strong finish. Your belief in the children and your constant support will allow these children to successfully finish another academic year. 

Thank you again for everything that you have done for U&I. We appreciate it and will keep you posted about the children's progress.

 

Jan 6, 2015

Teach Report: October-December 2014

Kavya, Auxilia, Netra and Sneha are 10th grade girls from one of U&I’s Learning Centers. They are at a crucial stage of their lives because of the academic pressure kids face in India during the 10th grade. Amidst the fear and anticipations they say they are having fun in 10th grade. Auxilia said “Homework and projects have multiplied this year compared to 9th grade, but the feeling of being seniors, in the highest class of our school is lovely.” Their common problem is with Hindi. Sneha said, “We are just focused on graduating. Hindi brings us nightmares, if we can’t understand simple words, then how can we write essay type answers?”. When asked how they are managing, Netra said “The countdown has already begun in our school- 8 months more, 6 months more... fast moving days worry us”. The year is almost wrapping up for these girls and their reasons for graduating the10th grade was eloquently put across by Kavya, “I am desperate to just pass this exam in order to get a degree. I only want to work and support my family and nothing else.” 

 

Along with children our teaching volunteers are equally anxious.The children share a strong and genuine bond with the volunteers. The volunteers are especially able to empathize with the children who are about to graduate the tenth grade since they have been there themselves.

The past three months have been challenging as well as incredibly inspiring. The U&I teach program is ever-expanding. U&I is up and running in four other Indian cities- Mumbai, Mysore, Coimbatore and Chennai. We are currently teaching over 458 women, children and men. We have recruited over 650 volunteers who are teaching over 5000 hours in 8 weeks.

As the year comes to an end and we reflect upon the past year, team U&I is grateful for the support that we have received. It is because you that children like Sneha are able to make their dreams a reality. We want to say a huge thank you for believing in the work that we do and positively impacting the lives of these children. With your continuous support, we are certain that these children will become pillars of success in their communities. Your support fills us with gratitude. Thank you, again.

 

 
   

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