Chennai

Inclusive housing project announced in Chennai

Raising the bar: Gopinath Ramakrishnan, managing trustee, SCAN, and T. Chitty Babu, chairman, Akshaya Pvt. Ltd, signing an MoU in Chennai on Thursday.   | Photo Credit: R. RAVINDRAN

An inclusive housing initiative has been announced in the city, with 58 modern conveniences, caregiver support for persons with disabilities, and managed services for food, housekeeping and maintenance.

On Thursday, Akshaya, a leading real estate developer, signed an MoU with Special Child Assistance Network (SCAN), a Chennai-based NGO, for the inclusive housing initiative, in partnership with Vidya Sagar.

A unique feature of the SCAN Inclusive Housing initiative at Akshaya Today is the ‘Group Homes’ that would be managed by SCAN in partnership with Vidya Sagar. These are shared accommodations, co-living, for adults with special needs. The aim is to offer care that is similar to the one they will get at home, when that option ceases to be available, when parents are not able to take care of them any more.

Speaking at the launch, actor Suhasini Maniratnam said at least 200 persons will be housed here. “The luckiest are the 1,900 families, because there is so much they will learn about life, that society cannot teach them. Something wonderful happens to people when they are completely hopeless. This is an amazing project. I think it is going to be a model project. This pandemic has taught our society the importance of being together, as well as being inclusive in our approach by accepting different people from various walks of life. This initiative has given me a lot of hope for humanity and for our country and the city,” said Ms. Maniratnam.

SCAN will also offer a vocational centre with a range of self-employment and supported employment options, and a therapy centre to provide required therapies for persons with special needs as well as all others on the Akshaya Today campus. This enables families with special children or any person with special needs to live life to the fullest.

People booking a home in the project will become an integral part of a 21-acre mini-township with 2,134 homes, and will have options of 1, 2 or 3 BHKs at preferential prices. In addition, they can get customised modifications, if any, specific to their requirement like wider doors for wheelchair access and customised bathrooms.

Chitty Babu, chairman & CEO of Akshaya, said, “Akshaya is honoured to be a partner in this first-of-its-kind housing initiative. We have been a pioneer of cutting-edge ideas and have achieved several firsts in the real-estate category. In our 26 years, Akshaya is well-known for offering differently-abled and elder-friendly homes, as well as kids-friendly communities. These initiatives have been well-received and appreciated by homebuyers across different age groups. We intend to provide SCAN members with a holistic housing solution supported by various amenities.”

True inclusion

Gopinath Ramakrishnan, managing trustee of SCAN, said the initiative was the first of its kind in the country.

“We embarked on an extensive selection process and zeroed in on Akshaya after wide consultations with our members. The aim of this initiative, which has been our dream for many years, is true inclusion where families with special needs are a part of the social fabric as equal citizens, supported with services focused on their unique requirements. Even more important than physical accessibility is the psychological accessibility and acceptance by the larger societal networks as a full member of the community,” he said.

Poonam Natarajan, founder of Vidya Sagar, said, “It will manage to create a supportive community for adults with disabilities, without developing an exclusive facility. I believe that SCAN’s inclusive model, and SCAN’s partnership with Akshaya will be a pioneering initiative in India.”

Actor Babloo Prithiveeraj said, “As the father of a special child, my wife and I were concerned about my son’s future. I was on the lookout for the right home that offered inclusive living for some time now, and when I came to know about this initiative by Akshaya and SCAN, I decided to purchase a home.”

The Akshaya Today project offers a full range of amenities, such as a clubhouse, swimming pool, and a 2-acre garden with aesthetic walkways with several disability friendly features. The project will be ready by March 2022.


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Printable version | Sep 28, 2021 6:36:17 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/inclusive-housing-project-announced-in-chennai/article35480329.ece

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