The education of the Persons with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities is often called Special education because their needs are really special. We have now undertaken Project Chetana for the education and rehabilitation of these children in and around Kolhapur. This project will be spread over 5 acres of land. The following facilities have been visualized in this project:
A school building to cater to the needs of around 200 students
A Vocational Training Centre to train around 200 students
Facilities will be made available in this centre for training in the following trades :
1. File making, 2. Book and notebook binding, 3. Making envelopes, paper bags, sweetmeat boxes, 4. Making chalks, wax candles and incense sticks, 5. Embroidery, knitting & stitching, 6. Furniture making, 7. Laundry jobs, 8. Bakery, 9. Welding, 10. Catering, 11. Screen printing and lamination, 12. Batik printing, Block printing bandhani, dyeing, ceramics 13. Diwali wax lamps, rakhis, utane and greeting cards 14. Production of cloth on handloom, 15. Making liquid soap, phenol, detergents & Surgical Bandages, 16. Chetana Bazaar.
The centre will also be equipped with the following:
Child Guidance Clinic.
Early intervention Centre
Speech Therapy Centre.
Diagnostic & Research Centre.
Music Room and Library.
Sports Complex with a Swimming pool.
Independent Hostels for boys and girls
Special School for slow learners.
“What will happen to them after me?”- This is a question which often worries parents of the intellectually disabled children. We are trying to procure 15 to 20 acres of land near Kolhapur so as to make a life- long provision for these children. The intellectually disabled persons can stay here permanently, work in the fields and thus earn a livelihood. Agriculture demands a tremendous variety of skills. This will provide employment from the least to the severely retarded person. Various other activities such as tree farming, hatchery, sericulture, goat farming etc could also come up, in due course of time. Around 100 persons can be rehabilitated through this centre. Parents of these children will also be permitted to stay in this centre in emergencies. There will also be a old age home for the old intellectually disabled persons in this centre and permanent medical facility will be available here.
Lastly we can only say
Let us make the persons with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Self reliant and self supporting
Let us help them win their rights
Let us help them win Self Respect and Human Dignity