It was an opportunity for children to get exposed to mainstream society, and bring out their innate potential.
In an effort to inculcate multiple skills ranging from craft making to sports activities, sixty-five children with mental disability from Madurai district came together on World Mental Health Day (October 10), to participate in the seventh district level competitions exclusively for mentally disabled children.
The event was organised by Bethshan Special School and The Gateway Hotel to create an opportunity for the children to express their hidden talent and get exposed to mainstream society.
Participants were divided into three groups. Children from eight to 12 years (junior group) participated in the painting competition. Those in the age group of 13 to 16 years (seniors) were involved in badminton and doubles carrom competition, while children 17 years and above (masters) participated in chess and doubles badminton competitions.
Pugalagiri Vadamalayan, Managing Director, Vadamalayan Hospitals, Madurai, inaugurated the programme and Ranjit Shankar General Manager, The Gateway Hotel, presided over the function.
Tangible nature of disability counts a lot in society as the visually and hearing impaired get attention, whereas mentally challenged children are ignored.
Rohit Dinakaran, aged 22, a student of Bethshan School, had the opportunity to showcase his talent at the national and global level when he participated in the Special Olympics held at Chandigarh and bagged the “Best Male Athlete” award. He went to Japan to participate in floor hockey.
A. Jeyapaul, coordinator, Bethshan School, said that three students from the school have been placed in jobs recently as assistant sales person, office assistant, and a girl student as helper in a Geriatric Home.