SAKSHAM: EDUCATION AND REHABILITATION RESOURCE CENTRE
FOR CHILDREN WITH VISUAL IMPAIRMENT, MULTIPLE DISABILITIES AND DEAFBLINDNESS
Saksham Resource centre has been working for the education, rehabilitation and empowerment of the visually impaired, deafblind and visual impairment with additional disabilities since 2006. Children from 0 to 17 years of age are given admission. Older children with multiple disabilities are provided vocational skill development training and employment opportunities.
Parents bring their child to Saksham through reference of other institution, other parents, doctors, interventionists or after looking up on the net. Every parent is given a very attentive listening. The senior interventionist interviews the parents and gets the detailed medical history of the child along with the history of the past interventions that the child might have received. The interventionist then interacts with the child and lets him/her mingle with children to assess the child. After an initial assessment the child is placed in an appropriate group under the care of a special educator. A plan is drawn up for the child in consultation with the parents. This plan is reviewed from time to time and amended according to the need and progress of the child.
THE DIFFERENT PROJECTS AT SAKSHAM RESOURCE CENTRE
Infant to Toddler and Early Intervention
Here children in the age of 0 to 4 years are admitted in the Infant to Toddler unit and children with visual impairment along with additional disabilities Read More....
who have not had any intervention previously and are below 7years of age are placed in the early intervention unit. Small babies born with visual impairment and associated disabilities have many developmental delays. Early intervention helps the child overcome their disabilities and catch up on these delayed developments.
The Infant to Toddler program is a centre and home-based program. It caters to the overall development of the child and support to the parent and the extended family. A team comprising of the early interventionists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, music therapists plan the intervention program for the child.
Children older than 4 years of age are placed in either the academic, vocational, early intevention or the Multisensory Impairment and Deafblind group after assessment.
Children with single disability, namely visual impairment, go through functional academic training, Pre-Braille training and then move on to pre-integration Read More....
The movement through all these levels of training ensures that the child is well prepared to be part of the mainstream school. As a culmination of these trainings the child is admitted into mainstream schools where they are part of the inclusive education set-up.
Children with additional intellectual disability are enrolled with the National Institute Open Schooling and complete their basic education at their pace. Saksham has secured accreditation from NIOS to run its Open Basic Education Program. This has ensured that no child capable of acquiring academic knowledge is left out of the education system. These children are also given vocational training to identify their area of interest and strength.
Integrated Education Program
After advocating inclusive education for the visually impaired and the child securing admission in a mainstream school, the integrated students are helped Read More....
with provision of school fees, uniform, books, Braille books, aids and appliances, tactile study material, transportation, after school academic support. The resource teachers regularly visits the schools to help the mainstream school teachers to transact the academic content and to guide them to include the children in all school activities.
All educable children are imparted computer training using a screen reading software. A progressive syllabus is followed according to the age of the child. Read More....
Eventually once the children are in class 6 they move from writing and reading in Braille to working on the computer. This way the barrier between the sighted and the visually impaired diminishes. They are at an equal footing in accessing knowledge and information
Pre-vocational programme for non-academic children
Children who are unable to cope with formal education are given vocational training. They receive functional knowledge of Mathematics, Science, Social Sciences Read More....
through the vocational training they receive. They learn maths while they sort shapes, count and string beads to make jewellery. They learn about nutritional values of food, weights, proportions, learn to identify different vegetables, fruits, spices when they learn to prepare food items. They learn about their social environment when they go shopping, visit the post office, places of worship, go on a metro ride etc. They are trained in money transaction while running a canteen at the centre.
Multi-sensory impaired/Deafblind Training Programme
Saksham has specialised teachers who teach children with deaf blindness through touch sign language. The children are also provided computer training Read More....on a computer device with refreshable Braille cells.
(School preparedness programme) Training in Orientation/Mobility, Sensory Integration, Communication, Daily Living Skills
Every student at Saksham is taught independent mobility skills starting from indoors to the outdoors. They are introduced to different tactile, Read More....
auditory, olfactory, gustatory experiences to compensate the lack of exposure due to their visual impairment. This training prepares them to accept the different senses that they will come across in their lives.
A great deal of emphasis is laid in the training of daily living skills like wearing their clothes, shoes, knowing the front and back of their clothing, personal hygiene, social etiquettes of eating, using public conveniences, of conversing with people, of managing their belongings, of preparing simple non fire food items, of being to manage their daily activities in their homes, to planning an event and being able to execute it, developing leadership qualities etc.
These training are very important for the child to be self reliant and confident.
Self- Employment opportunity
It is a challenge for the children of the vocational unit having multiple disabilities and intellectual disability to gain employment once they complete training at Saksham. Read More....
In most cases the children just sit at home and do not contribute much.
For the children completing vocational training, Saksham provides self-employment opportunity. The child is given training in the area of his interest and strength. A mobile kiosk is made according to the need and keeping in mind the disability of the child. It is handed over to the child after stocking it initially with material of sale. The child runs the kiosk under the supervision of the teachers in the vicinity of the school. Finally the kiosk is handed over to the child and his guardians. The activity is monitored from time to time by the school team to ensure that the child is involved in the activity.
Adult Rehabilitation Program:
This program includes the category of visually impaired adults who are late blind due to accident or illness. They come for short duration Read More....
to receive training in computer skills, orientation mobility and social communication so that they can move ahead in their life and work for their dreams.
Capacity building, parent guidance and counselling program
Every year workshops are conducted to enhance the knowledge base of the teacher. Workshops for parents are also organised to make them aware of the various opportunities available for their children Read More....
if they have the proper education and training. They are counselled to work with their children to bring out the best in them and encourage them.
Saksham’s association with the various corporate, donor organisation, specialists in the field of disability, mainstream schools, the ministry of social justice and empowerment, other NGOs, individuals have highlighted the Read More....
capabilities of the visually impaired and the need to join hands to make them part of the mainstream society.
Saksham provides practical training and practice opportunities to students of special education from different institutions.