GUWAHATI, Dec 14 - This permanent home cum care centre located at Birubari has emerged as a ray of hope for many parents who have a child with intellectual and developmental disabilities. To manage such a child by parents alone is an impossible task as persons with such disabilities have multiple handicaps like physical disability, restricted mobility, mental sub-normality, speech difficulty, visual impairments, seizure and other general medical problems. Mental handicap too is a permanent issue for such a person.
In view of the difficulties that parents of such a child have to go through, PASS, an organisation of parents for the welfare of persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities, has set up this permanent home, creating a sense of peace for all parents who have such a child to look after.
�Such a person with intellectual and developmental disabilities never returns to normalcy. Peace and happiness of any family having persons with such disability is totally shattered. Such persons need permanent assistance and help as long as they live. They are permanently dependent on others and can never become independent in their lifetime,� said Sribas Dhar, general secretary of the organisation.
Like parents of a normal child, parents of a child with intellectual and developmental disabilities too desire to manage their child at home with necessary care, affection and love. But soon parents feel the necessity of a specialised care home when the child starts growing older.
�As such a child grows up, parents find it difficult to look after him/her. Parents start feeling anxious as to what will happen to their son or daughter when they are no more. Moreover, spastic children need round-the-clock assistance for their development. Therefore, we felt the need to start a home, which will take care of the well-being of such children and provide facilities for their long-term care and shelter,� mentioned Dhar.
It needs to be mentioned that PASS was formed with a view to furthering the cause of the parents of children with autism, cerebral palsy, mental retardation and multiple disabilities and providing permanent care and shelter, opportunities and facilities for employment, training, education, rehabilitation and general welfare of such persons. PASS has been concentrating on raising awareness and empowering the parents of persons with multiple disabilities and also organising the parents in forming a parents� association so as to enable them to get the benefit available for welfare of their children.
In this home, the inmates are provided with both short-term (respite care) and long-term (prolonged) stay. The other activities include training in self-help skills, social skills, communication skills, domestic skills and recreational skills.
At present there are 13 beneficiaries under long-term (prolonged) stay and a host of beneficiaries are availing the short-term (respite care) facilities. Ages of the inmates vary between 7 and 50 years and PASS is careful that this home doesn�t turn into a dumping ground. In future the home will enhance its intake capacity to 35.
�We are also providing hostel facilities for children from outside Guwahati who are taking the benefit of special education at Shishu Sarothi. Most of our beneficiaries are of severe categories,� said Dhar.
The home is equipped with all sorts of learning aids, recreational aids, medical and therapeutical aids and appliances including items of long-term stay facilities. Round-the-clock care, training and recreational services are provided with the help of specialised staff/caregivers, parents, therapists, medical experts and trained social workers. This home was formally inaugurated last year.