Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan

by IRODA 'Parents of Children with Autism Initiative'
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Support for Children with Autism in Tajikistan
Welcoming young people back into the centre
Welcoming young people back into the centre

2020 has brought many unexpected changes with the challenges of COVID19. IRODA has endeavoured to support families throughout these changes and through challenging circumstances. As restrictions have started to be eased IRODA has begun offering some services within the centre again. Over the years, the Developmental Program has provided an alternative to institutionalised care in government settings for children and young people with autism, intellectual disabilities and high support needs. Practical everyday life skills are taught in a supportive environment that meets individual needs. The period through which programs had to close was particularly stressful for the families of children who access the Developmental Program. IRODA staff have worked hard to put measures in place to be able to safely re-open this program and provide much needed in-person support to these young people, and respite for their families after the challenges of such a long time at home. 

Thank you for your on-going support throughout the challenges of 2020. The generosity of individual people around the world has enabled us to respond to the needs of families in our community during these difficult times. 

So pleased to have you back!
So pleased to have you back!
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Learning from others in changing times
Learning from others in changing times

As with people all over the world IRODA is facing challenges and changes brought about by the coronavirus pandemic. Recent restrictions have resulted in the ‘Dar Yak Zamin’ café and ‘iTavono’ design studio (IRODA’s two social enterprises) needing to close. The café and design studio have been providing employment for young people with disabilities as well as generating income to support IRODA’s work. Whilst caring for the community by following restrictions and physical distancing, IRODA is seeking to support the young employees and continue to generate income required to maintain the organisations important services. These are challenging times but IRODA remains committed to the community that it serves

IRODA’s programs supporting children and their families with their development and learning are currently not being provided face to face. Recently the Director of one of our partner organisations in Bangladesh provided online training for the IRODA staff on how to support children and families remotely. Much was learnt from the experience of the Hope Autism Centre who has been working remotely for longer than IRODA. In such challenging times it is so helpful to have partners and mentors to learn from and share experiences with. Not every family has consistent access to the internet and creativity is required to find alternative ways of offering support through these difficult times. 

More than ever we are thankful for your on-going partnership as we adapt to the changing times that we are in.  With creativity, care and compassion we will continue to support our community. Thank you for enabling us to do so in these challenging times. 

Training moves online
Training moves online
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Freedom Training Apartment
Freedom Training Apartment

An exciting new venture for IRODA has been the opening of ‘Free-DOM’, an apartment in Tajikistan that will support young people in gaining independent living skills.  Using the Russian word for house, ‘dom’, and the English word ‘free’ the name of this project describes what it is hoped will be created for young adults with disabilities in Tajikistan.  

Prior to IRODA’s work in supporting and advocating for young adults with autism institutional care was assumed to be the most appropriate option for adults who were not able to live within their family’s home. In the creation of ‘Free-DOM’ IRODA is setting up a model for both training young people with everyday life skills and creating opportunities for supported accommodation within the community. 

It is hoped that this recently equipped apartment will be the first of many places within neighbourhoods throughout Tajikistan that will provide young adults with supportive environments in which to learn new skills and experience independence within an inclusive community.  Thank you for your on-going partnership that is changing the future for people with disabilities in Tajikistan. 

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Early Childhood Supports
Early Childhood Supports

Central to IRODA’s work from the very beginning has been its endeavour to provide timely and meaningful supports to families of young children with autism.  Currently IRODA supports around 100 families of young children through programs at its centre and home visits from staff. IRODA has led by example in providing supports that are family centred and relevant to the individual children and family in their unique home and community context. As IRODA has developed early childhood intervention for children with autism there has been demand for services following the same principles for children with cerebral palsy and down syndrome.  Broadening its work IRODA is now offering group programs at the centre and home-based supports using a family centred approach for children with other disabilities. Recently IRODA has also started to mentor organisations in three regional areas of Tajikistan on early childhood intervention. 

Increasing awareness of the importance of early childhood development amongst the general public is a priority. IRODA has been involved in the production of a documentary that shares stories and experiences of families and professionals, highlighting the importance of supporting children in the critical early years of their development. The documentary is currently being shown on national television in Tajikistan and providing an excellent means by which to increase understanding and awareness.  

A commitment to supporting children and their families right from the start is having a long-term impact on individual lives and the development of social services in Tajikistan. Thank you for your partnership with IRODA that allows the work to grow and expand.

Group programs for children and parents
Group programs for children and parents
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Tajikistan's first mobile food van
Tajikistan's first mobile food van

Following the success of the training café ‘Dar Yak Zamin’ opened in 2017 to create employment opportunities for young adults with autism, IRODA has continued to look for ways to support young people in preparing for and gaining employment.  Just recently this has led to the social enterprise expanding to open the first ever mobile food van in Tajikistan.  As an extension of the ‘Dar Yak Zamin’ café and catering service the food van is providing additional employment opportunities for young adults with autism and engaging with the community through its mobile service. 

The socioeconomic situation in Tajikistan, in combination with the need for Tajik society to continue to develop an acceptance and appreciation for the skills and abilities of the young adults IRODA supports, results in challenges in gaining employment in the open labour market.  While these barriers exist IRODA is working hard through its social enterprises to provide employment opportunities and engage with the community to change attitudes and systems. 

Thank you for your on-going partnership that supports IRODA to create innovative opportunities such as its new mobile food van. 

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Organization Information

IRODA 'Parents of Children with Autism Initiative'

Location: Dushanbe, Tajikistan - Tajikistan
Website:
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Project Leader:
Karen Purdie
Dushanbe, Tajikistan
$52,006 raised of $70,000 goal
 
643 donations
$17,994 to go
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