Vishal aged 17yrs. was brought to Freedom Foundation at the age of 3 ½ yrs. from St.Catherine’s home, Bombay. He don’t have any family members and from the time he was two months old till the age of 2 he was a resident of St. Catherine’s home Bombay, after which he has been here at FF.
Medical:His medical history shows that he had taken treatment for Herpes, Pneumonia, LRTI, Tonsillitis and also treated for TB. He started his HAART in the year 2008 at the age of 11yrs and is in follow up at Indira Gandhi Hospital.
Academics & Career: When he came to FF, he was put in Nursery and he studied in Tamil Medium till his 7th standard. He was shifted to English Medium in std VIII. As he was below average in his studies, he was not able to manage, he failed once in std VIII and twice in his IX std. So he discontinued his studies since April 2014.
He is very much interested & talented in drawing. His body is rhythmic to dance and he is a very good dancer.
Challenges: The organization faced the real challenge with this child when he failed twice in his ninth standard & was not showing any interest in his studies
- He was not ready to continue his education in spite of continuous counseling & motivation, he discontinued his studies in April 2013. After this also, he attended classes on a special request, encouragement & special attention was given to him both from the school & the organization but he was not able to get through.
- To enroll in any trainings like basic computers, ITI, etc. he was lacking the required basic skills of reading & writing and to put him any vocational training, his age was an issue as he had completed only 16yrs
- Nearly two years it was a great challenge for FF to manage him as he was closed to all the options.
As he was not interested in studies, he was counseled and taken to a Consultant-Psychologist with the complaints of forgetfulness, difficulties in writing, reading & arithmetic. On Binet Kamat Test of Intelligence he obtained a mental Age of 8yrs and a prorated IQ of 64, indicating he is functioning at a level of mild mental retardation. On Vineland Social Maturity Scale, he obtained a Social Age of 8 yrs & 6 mths and a Social Quotient of 59. On NIMHANS Index of Specific Learning Disability, his attention was adequate, but had severe difficulties in all the areas of learning due to below average level of intelligence. He was consulted for further counseling with Dr.Vijayaraman at St.John’s hospital
After discontinuation from school, to keep him engaged, with the help of Dr.Vijayaraman, he was admitted for a training in Art – Pilot class being conducted at St.John’s hospital on every Saturdays. He has also been suggested to look for a job-oriented certification course in art which will help him to move forward. But this is a challenge as we approached many institutes where he requires a minimum SSLC qualification. The situation is explained and the child is well counseled & encouraged him to join a vocational training after he completes 18yrs. of age.
In due course, he also worked for daily wages in a vegetable packing factory & then in an ice-cream factory for few months which kept him engaged & gave him an opportunity to gain a different experience. During this, he faced challenges in regard to his health, travel, etc.. He bought a bicycle with his salary and travelled to the work place.
In Nov 2015, he was admitted for ‘Guest Care’ vocational training course for 50 days, completed in the mid of Jan 2016, had attended interviews at the training campus and was appointed at ‘Hatti Kaapi’. After a month, due to outstation travel & stay difficulties, he shifted to a new job in a spring manufacture company. He is satisfied with his current job, staying in a room, two times food is provided at his work place and one time he is managing from outside.
In spite of continuous counseling for maintaining proper food & medication, he had been very careless and dint follow the timings properly. Hence his CD4 count has been decreased from 655 (in Aug 2015) to 144 (in March 2016). In regard to this, he visited IGH along with the social worker, blood sample was drawn for viral load test and awaiting result. Now he is very closely monitored and counseled in regard to medication and nutrition.