managed by Sudeep G. (Communication)
We wish to introduce ‘Asha Ka Jharna’ as a voluntary non-profit organization working for the cause of disability since 1997. Three special schools for mentally challenged and hearing impaired children are being run by us in the rural areas of Rajasthan, where special education, therapeutic, vocational, guidance and counseling to about 165 special children and their families are provided.
1. Three school buildings at Nawalgarh, Jhunjhunu and Sikar (Rented Premises) comprising seven classes each. There are one hundred and sixty five children [mentally challenged (80) and hearing impaired (85)] studying at all the schools.
2. Human resources: Thirty six personnel’s with professional qualifications as well as untrained ones going through various on-the-job training and refresher programms.
3. Well equipped Physiotherapy and Speech Therapy Departments at all our three schools consisting of basic therapeutic equipments including group hearing systems, audiometer and speech trainers, traction, stimulator, diathermy etc.
4. Library with more than two thousand books on disability, special education, leisure reading for children and staff, govt. schemes etc. We have subscription of around ten regular newsletters/periodicals on these issues.
5. Well-equipped Computer rooms at all units with total thirteen computers (P-III processors), three printers, CD writer, one scanner, two UPS system, with educational CD’S and floppies.
Authorized study centre of Indira Gandhi National Open University New Delhi for Foundation Course on Disability targeted at in –service- teachers.
Asha Ka Jharna is the recipient of “STATE BEST NGO AWARD 2009” by Rajasthan Government.
Ours is the only organization in Rajasthan which offers such comprehensive services to disadvantaged community at rural and semi-urban locations that too at three different places covering two districts.
Quarterly Activity Report
October 2011 to December 2011
School Activities: After the board exam results, children were settled in their new classes and all routine activities were done as per schedule and as per respective ‘Individualised Education & Training Programme’ devised after reassessment. Nutrition supplements, stationery, transport facility, uniform and sweaters (along with blankets to most needy families) provided to all the children.
Right to Education Workshop: As the new RTE act has far reaching provisions for children in the age group of 6 – 14 years, a sensitization workshop was organized by Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan at Jaipur. Various provisions of training of teachers, class room management, lesson planning and assistive tools etc. were elaborated by the resource persons. We apprised them of the IGNOU foundation course for mainstream teachers being run at our centre since last four years through which around five hundred teachers have been enabled to deliver the services effectively to special needs children.
IGNOU Coordinator Meeting: During the coordinator meeting of all study centres of Rajasthan, we briefed PRO vice chancellor of Indira Gandhi National Open University about our activities and suggested some changes in the modules of foundation course in light of our experience. More such short term training programmes in the rehabilitation field were asked for to create an informed pool.
FCED Contact Programme: Another batch of 40 govt. teachers got their training during the reported period. With the help of in house trainers and some external resource professionals, we have strived hard to inculcate the feeling of empathy among these teachers who always go back with a sense of belongingness and desire to work more closely with special children. During their stay this time, festivals of Deepawali and Christmas were celebrated with the active participation of teachers. Many of them described it as their best ever Deepawali. We also made them promise to integrate the children in their schools during all the opportunities possible besides making practical use of classroom teaching what they have learnt here at AKJ.
Special Olympics Meeting: A meeting was called at Area Director office , Pilani where representatives from ten districts of Rajasthan assembled to finalise the modalities of conducting district games for special persons under the banner of Special Olympics and Department of Sports and Youth Affairs. This is a flagship scheme in which persons with disabilities participate in the two days games competition where various sport events are played. AKJ has been entrusted the responsibility of conducting Sikar district level games for which preparations are in full swing.
Capacity Building Workshop: One resource person from ‘Sense International/BPA’ visited us and shared perspective on educating deaf blind children. This being a novel approach, our staff gained valuable lessons from her.
BTE Distribution Camp: Our intensive campaigning and efforts of last one year paid dividends when 220 children and elderly persons with speech and hearing impairment coming from far away places across six districts of Rajasthan got high quality behind the ear hearing aids free of cost. At a glittering function held at Jaipur, officials from ‘Starkey Hearing Foundation’ USA distributed these aids along with ear moulds and batteries. Children were very enthusiastic to wear these aids which transmitted them good distortion free sound. With this second camp in three years, four hundred aids worth more than one Crore rupees had been gifted to needy children in our region through Asha Ka Jharna.
Resource Sharing and Hand Holding: We consulted with a philanthropist at Jaipur regarding opening up a new facility for special children in his area. Detailed guidelines were given to him with respect of selection of site; making of classrooms and other facilities; conducting surveys for identification; assessment tools; selection of right educators; academic and training modules and so on. Till date we have helped four organizations to be built up from greenfield at Jaisalmer, Sujangarh, Sikar and Bikaner.
Exposure Visit: 50 special children along with their teachers studying at govt. schools in Pali District came to AKJ as a part of their exposure visit. We interacted with them; made them play, perform, draw and have fun. We also briefed accompanying teachers to be more receptive to their needs while working with them in a inclusive setup.
Woolen Cloths Distribution: Woolen sweaters and socks were distributed to sixty of oue children at a nearby Ashram. Children also went on a excursion trip with delicious food served to them.
World Day for Disabled: 3rd December as ‘International Day for Disabled’ is observed worldwide. We use this occasion to show case the abilities of differently abled children. This year our children were sent to Jhunjhunu district level games organized by Chirawa special school. They participated there in various sports events and bagged more than 20 medals. At Sikar a programme organized by SSA, children took part in an awareness rally, performed cultural programmes, participated in sporting events. Audience including district collector and other admin officials along with general public were enthralled by their spirit and appreciated profusely.
National Trust Review Meeting: Annual review meeting of Rajasthan organizations registered with National Trust, Delhi was attended by us at UMANG SNAC Centre, Jaipur. Nearly 30 NGO’s participated and shared their annual activity report. NT new initiatives were also discussed. We made a presentation and invited all for the forthcoming ‘Regional Parents Meet’ hosted by AKJ.
Functions and Celebrations: During the reporting period, Navratras, Dusserha, Diwali, Eid and Christmas were celebrated with usual fun and fair. Children were briefed about their importance and a message of harmony and solidarity was conveyed to them.
Quarterly Activity Report
July 2011 to September 2011
Capacity Building: To augment the skills of other organizations in this field, we shared a manual on learning disability with ‘Govt. School for Hearing Impaired’ at Jaipur.
Outreach and Awareness: To showcase their abilities and to generate empathy, we took our children to foundation day function of ‘Bharat Vikas Parishad’ where they performed and were applauded by the dignitaries of town. Similarly visitors from Surat, Mumbai and Indore interacted with the children and spent quality time here.
Resource Sharing: AKJ sent its special educator as a resource person for two days to Churu where a group of 40 Aanganwadi workers were sensitized and briefed upon various aspects of disability with special focus on early identification and intervention in 0 – 6 year age group children.
Functions and Celebrations: During the reported period , various functions such as Raksha Bandhan, Janmashtami, Idul-fitar, Navratra and local fair of Baba Ramdev along with National Independence Day were celebrated with full zeal. Feeling of bonding was strengthened among children, parents, staff and community.
Dental and Health Checkup: As a practice, we conduct two dental and health checkup in a year to assess the general wellbeing of our children. This was done on August 24th by a group of dentist and physician from Jangid Hospital, Nawalgarh. Dental, Oral hygiene, ENT and general body checkup was done and accordingly advice given to parents.
Ear Mould Measurement Camp: As a last assessment camp before this year, distribution of BTE hearing aids, 85 children and elderly persons were screened for hearing loss and their ear canal measurement was taken for proper fitting earmould. This time, due to our wide media publicity, children from as far as 300 km. across Rajasthan came and were benefitted.
Quarterly Activity Report
April 2011 to June 2011
Networking and Resource Sharing: we always believe in capacity building and networking of likeminded individuals and organizations to create and enrich a better resource pool for special needs population. In this regard, we extended our help to one upcoming special school at Bikaner by guiding them with various tools and policies. We also got arranged free BTE hearing aid identification camp there.
Finalization of State Policy for Disabled: Consultations and deliberations of all stakeholders to develop a forward looking pragmatic Rajasthan state disabled policy have been going on for quite some time. We have always participated in this crucial exercise and put through our thoughts on it. On 03rd May, one advanced meeting was attended by us at Jaipur in which final draft was read out and after discussions was forwarded to state Govt. for adoption and enactment of the policy.
FCED Review Meeting: On 10th May, a high powered review meeting of ‘Foundation Course on Disability’ was called at education department headquarter. Stock taking of previous batches; procedural hurdles at district level; revised schedules; current year targets and action plan were discussed thoroughly and it was agreed upon to take this ambitious national programme further with full zeal. We highlighted the importance of feedback from the successful trainee teachers and were given the responsibility of developing the module for same.
National Coach Training Camp: Under the banner of ‘Special Olympics, Bharat’ and ‘Deptt. of Sports, Govt. of India’, one week advanced master training camp for preparing national coaches was held at Gwalior in which four of our sports teachers and special educators participated. They learnt the basics of conducting state and national games for special children. Theory and practical concepts were explained and demonstrated by the sports professors and detailed drill of organizing different game events was undertaken. Asha Ka Jharna has been entrusted the responsibility of conducting Sikar District Level Games during current academic year.
Outreach Services at Disability Camp: During a one day disability aids and appliances distribution camp held at Nawalgarh by Lions Club, we provided the services of our audiometer along with audiologist who screened the prospective hearing impaired persons. Body level hearing aids were provided to them through central govt. scheme. Besides more than one hundred tricycles, wheel chairs and calipers were distributed to physically challenged persons.
Accessibility Workshop: We participated in a daylong workshop themed on accessibility software’s available for special needs persons. New IT tools and programmes were show cased among delegates. This workshop was sponsored by ‘Barrier Free Technologies’.
Annual Exams under NIOS: National Institute of Open Schooling, Noida (National School Examination Board) conducted annual exams of three levels equivalent to class 3rd, 5th and 8th for our enrolled children. Total of 19 children appeared for these exams which will enable them for recognized certification.
Out Reach, Awareness and Training Activities: During the children summer vacation, we sent our staff members to nearby community areas within 25 Km. radius. Aim was to identify and counsel the parents of untapped special needs children. Their needs and specific requirements were assessed. Steps were taken to address the findings.
During the same period, staff took the annual stock taking exercise of their class rooms. New teaching and learning material were developed, updating of records was done, rooms were redecorated and some brief training sessions were organized.