Chennai

Marathon funds used to set up cerebral palsy lab

Children along with their caretakers play an adapted sport. Photo: Special Arrangement  

If you know of anyone with Cerebral Plasy (CP) who wants to improve their gait, walkability and wheelchair mobility, then guide them to the National Institute for Empowerment of Persons with Multiple Disabilities (NIEPMD) at Muthukad on East Coast Road.

The Institute got an adapted sports lab for children with CP and other multiple disabilities, thanks to over 700 running enthusiasts and many other well-wishers from Inner Strength Trust.

The lab, which was opened to coincide with Cerebral Palsy Awareness Month, promises to be a place where those with disabilities can play football, carrom board, basketball, portable goal poll and other games that will help improve hand-eye coordination and finger dexterity.

“We have 135 children with multiple disabilities enrolled with our model school found on the campus. Besides taking part in these activities at the lab, outsiders can register with the office for other services offered at the Institute that would help improve their hand-eye coordination,” says K.K. Dhanavendan, teacher for CP at NIEPMD.

Running for a cause

Since 2017, Inner Strength Trust, a non-profit that earns from marathons conducted by UNIS Running group, has been supporting those diagnosed with CP.

“A physiotherapist in our group often used to tell us about the challenges faced by those with CP, including the cost of the physiotherapy they needed every day, and that led us to start supporting them,” says Viji Swaminathan, founder of the Trust. She says treatment for 15 children was sponsored in 2017, an it cost around ₹ 2.5 lakh.

ALSO READ: Ambattur Rotary Hospital Opens its cerebral palsy unit for children, following renovation

In the following years, the Trust helped NIEPMD with equipment required to help children with CP, with their learning and development needs. In 2020, ₹ 2.5 lakh was spent towards the surgery of almost 20 children who have CP.

The 2021 edition of the Madras Inner Strength Half Marathon had 750 participants and the proceeds from the event went towards establishing the lab at NIEPMD.

Others dignitaries who took part in the inauguration are Mudumbi Narayan and Ranish Haran, members of Inner Strength Trust; A. Amarnath, deputy registrar (Offg); and B. Leelavathi, principal in-charge, Model School for Persons with Multiple Disabilities.

For details, contact NIEPMD at 9444314716.


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Printable version | Jun 13, 2021 10:20:56 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/marathon-funds-used-to-set-up-cerebral-palsy-lab/article34229087.ece

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