Madurai

Need for a vocational training centre for special children

Madurai

There is a need for a vocational training centre in every district for children with special needs, say their parents.

“This facility must have a conducive environment and must also accommodate the parents too as these children constantly need their support. Vocational training acts as a means of relaxation for the special children,” said A. Chandrasekar, Managing Trustee of Madurai Group Living Foundation (MGLF), a federation of parents of special children.

He was speaking during a discussion held at Special Needs Park on Alagarkoil Road on Saturday, where parents of special children discussed the challenges they faced in raising their children and the need for government interventions as part of International Women’s Day celebrations.

The parents also stressed that there was a need for a separate government policy focussing on the rehabilitation of special children.

A.S.P. Aruna Devi, a parent who also runs Arivagam Special School, says that the government must identify special children under a separate category and must not club them with the differently-abled.

Children with special needs include those with mental retardation, Autism spectrum disorder, cerebral palsy, down syndrome and multiple disabilities. “The differentiation is important as each kid has different therapeutic needs ,” she said.

Another parent, J. Ariyamala, said that creating awareness of special children and educating parents is important.

“Recognition of autistic children at a young age is important as providing therapy at an earlier stage can benefit the children. Usually, the most difficult part is when parents do not accept that their children are special. Hence, it is important to educate them,” she said.

The social stigma is usually higher when the special child is a girl, said N.M.H. Kalaivani, a parent.

“Also, girl children with special needs require more support and care, especially after puberty. Hence, there is a need for a change in the mindset among the people,” she said.

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Printable version | May 26, 2020 11:19:23 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/need-for-a-vocational-training-centre-for-special-children/article31069375.ece

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