Silent graduation from a 'special' to 'normal' life
- Silent graduation from a 'special' to 'normal' life
Posted by: "karmayog.org - sheetal" info@...
Thu May 6, 2010 2:10 am (PDT)
Silent graduation from a 'special' to 'normal' life........ .Deepa Suryanarayan
Mumbai: As Yoshita Umrigar walked to the stage dressed in a purple convocation robe and cap, her mother silently rejoiced. So did the parents of six other children who participated in a unique graduation ceremony at the Centre for Child Development, Haji Ali, on Friday evening.
Seven children, all below the age of six, suffering from hearing disability graduated on Friday from I Hear Foundation's Naad project. As part of the project, the children were taught listening and learning skills and they will finally join regular schools.
More and more children with disabilities now have the option of going to regular schools and getting integrated into the mainstream society.
Diagnosed with hearing impairment at the age of three months, Yoshita was brought to Naad's centre at Lamington Road the same year. Having undergone numerous surgeries, Yoshita has had a difficult life so far.
However, despite her ear infection and inability to wear implants, Yoshita has managed to learn to speak and listen - a feat that earned her a graduation certificate on Friday.
Shirin Umrigar, Yoshita's mother, said: "She will now be attending Activity High School at Pedder Road. The school was very helpful and I had no difficulty procuring admission for her."
The earlier the better, is the motto followed by audiologists across the world when it comes to training hearing-impaired children. "We believe that early intervention is the key towards stimulating a child's auditory and neural pathways, which, in turn, will enable the child to integrate into the mainstream school and society. This is because a child is the most malleable and receptive to learning at a tender age," said Shah.
Five-year-old Siddharth Munot cannot stop prattling about his favourite cuisine: Chinese and his favourite sport: swimming. Already a student of Witty International, Malad, Siddharth has been getting help from Naad. But after graduation, he will be a full-time student in a regular school.
"This is a landmark day for them. The transition is now complete," said Malashri Patel, program co-ordinator, Naad.
Chief guest JP Singh, member-secretary, The Rehabilitation Council of India, said: "We are working on a plan which will enable a child, born in a government hospital or a private nursing home, to undergo a screening at the time to birth to diagnose hearing disability."