ASHA KA JHARNA
Quarterly Activity Report (April 2019 to June 2019)
This quarterly activity report for the period April 2019 to June 2019 of Asha Ka Jharna (AKJ) special schools is aimed to depict, describe and list various activities undertaken with children, staff and community members during this period. The report also illustrates the various events organized by the organization, visits of prominent personalities, awards, honors and accreditations received etc.
• Periodic meetings of Governing body, management committee, school administration committee, sexual harassment at work place committee and children safety/security committee were held during this quarter where relevant issues were discussed in detail and decisions taken accordingly. Team members’ annual appraisals were also completed.
• As part of empathy among community, birthday of Chairman Municipal Corporation was celebrated on 8th April among children. Birthday of leading newspaper reporter was also celebrated where all correspondents from media fraternity assembled and our cause was made more visible.
• One of our special educators Mr Prabhu Narain Yadav was fully sponsored by us for 15 days ‘Short Term Training Program on Basic Skills in Indian Sign Language’ from 24th April to 10th May 2019 at Indian Sign Language Research and Training Centre New Delhi. He learnt theoretical & practical skills in ISL from national expert faculties. After successful assessment, he was awarded certificate. Upon his return, he has been transferring the knowledge gained among other team members here at AKJ.
• On 25th – 26th April , our chief functionary & access auditor Mr Sudeep Goyal took an Enriching and Lively session on " Decoding Accessibility : Why, What & How" at Regional CRE Workshop at SNEH Nagda (MP) jointly organized by National Institute for Empowerment of Persons with Multiple Disabilities and Rehabilitation Council of India. More than 125 special educators and regular school teachers from five states were briefed about nuances of accessibility & inclusion. Live demo and interactive talk made this session more accessible to participants. Later on, access features of MAHAKAAL Temple and world largest Sensory Park Ujjain were shown and explained to delegates in detail by him. We also discussed to take community based inclusive development pilot project by Ministry of Social Justice further in the region.
• During this quarter our team members provided their services as Support Person (Sign language interpreter) to Police in three cases of sexual assault where victims/accused were hearing & speech impaired. We are empaneled here at Jhunjhunu & Sikar districts to offer our pro-bono services to Police & Judiciary.
• During Parliamentary General Elections 2019, we actively motivated inclusion of PWD voters in electoral process. As per Election Commission Theme of ‘Accessible Elections’ , various activities like awareness rally , RUN 4 VOTE etc. were executed by us in association with department of social justice. On 2nd & 3rd May, events were held at Jhunjhunu & Sikar where our children participated enthusiastically. More than 25 of our past children (Now Adult) with intellectual disabilities as well as hearing impairment exercised their voting rights for the first time in these elections.
• Upon request of District Collector, Jhunjhunu Asha Ka Jharna facilitated three braille instructors who assisted district administration in reading braille scripts on EVM & demo material for awareness.
• On 4th May, Sub Divisional Magistrate Nawalgarh paid a surprise visit to our school. He was highly impressed and appreciative of our functioning & children progress.
• On 9th May, our chief functionary Mr Sudeep Goyal delivered a talk on FM Radio Sikar on Safe & Unsafe Touch for children. He explained alarming increase in such incidents, social dynamics involved, legislative support mechanism and ways of prevention for parents & community.
• On 10th May, on the occasion of Mother’s Day, Alliance Clubs International felicitated five of our women educators of AKJ for their selfless services for children with disabilities. Many speakers in the function commented that we have been providing motherly affection and care to these children more than their natural guardians.
• A meeting on child protection was called by District Collector Jhunjhunu on 24th June in which we were also invited. We shared our views there and raised the vulnerability of disabled children.
• During children summer break, our team again hit the streets braving scorching sun & heat for annual updation survey. New beneficiaries were identified and parents counselled upon to link them to appropriate services (education, social security, employment, medical). Those fit for our school, after the initial screening at home, were called to school for detailed assessment followed by admission from next session to be started in July.
- ‘Independent Living Project’ saw two more Hearing Impaired youth getting job at Reliance Retail Sikar as ‘Customer support executive’. Our mentor Mr Tarun Dubey (Sikar School Coordinator) has been regularly making contacts with parents to counsel upon initiating interaction with skill training & job facilitator agency who is our partner. We do regular hand holding along with monetary help in offsetting the partial cost of living. Our Mentor occasionally visits the youth staying at Jaipur and available on phone always for guidance & counselling support. At present three youth are gainfully employed leading independent livings as envisaged while one is under skill training.
- We proactively look for any potential harmful situations for persons with disabilities. While seeing photos of meals being served at Govt & Private Homes for Intellectually disabled children/adults whom they are mandated to upload on a dedicated WA group, we saw red flags. Residents were given bland food (Only dry Roti & Dry Vegetable) in the summers of 46* C. No nutrition or balanced diet was given to them. We immediately raised this issue before appropriate authorities at state govt level. We pursued vigorously and managed to get circular inviting comments from stakeholders. Subsequently we engaged a dietitian on our own who prepared a diet chart keeping in mind calorie values & nutritional needs of residents. Now we are pursuing with department to get directives issued in this regard.