Twenty-nine academic and support staff working for over 25 years to rehabilitate persons with disability were honoured at a ‘Special Teachers’ Day’ function by Tiruchi Disability Forum (TDF) on Wednesday.
The first-of-its-kind event was held at Spastics Society of Tiruchi and was presided by Collector M. Pradeep Kumar.
“Though we have many new legal safeguards in place for the empowerment and inclusion of persons with disability in India, much more can be done to actually achieve these goals on the ground, especially in mainstream education and job reservations,” S. Martin, president of TDF, told The Hindu.
TDF is a network of 52 organisations working for persons with disability for the past 30 years.
“We celebrate many of the international days for persons with disability throughout the year. We felt that felicitating the men and women who have devoted their life to this section of the society would send a positive message to the public and also encourage them to keep up the good work,” said C. Shanthakumar, secretary, TDF, and Director of The Spastics Society.
Thomas Ebenezer, who has been working for the empowerment of persons with intellectual disabilities, mountain tribes and women for 40 years through his charitable organisation Integrated Action Trust (INTACT), was one of the recipients of the Teachers’ Day awards.
“I am very thankful for the honour, which I wish to share with the INTACT staff team, as it validates our efforts to enable persons with disability to live independently within a supportive network, equipped with skills and jobs. Parents of disabled persons play an important role in giving hope and encouragement to their wards, which is why our training programmes include them,” said Mr. Ebenezer.
All invited educators received certificates and trophies.