TAMIL NADU

Tsunami-hit students to be assessed

A relief package: Some of the tsunami-affected children from Nagapattinam district undergoing a 10-day computer training programme at the Holy Cross Service Society in Tiruchi. Photo: R.M.Rajarathinam.

A relief package: Some of the tsunami-affected children from Nagapattinam district undergoing a 10-day computer training programme at the Holy Cross Service Society in Tiruchi. Photo: R.M.Rajarathinam.  

S. Ganesan

TIRUCHI: The Holy Cross Service Society, a voluntary organisation, has taken up a study to identify symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, if any, among the tsunami-affected school children in seven villages in Nagapattinam district.

About 800 students in villages around Tranquebar would be assessed and so far about 360 students have been covered. The study would involve a structured methodology of eliciting response to a questionnaire on behavioural changes, if any, among the students. Parents or blood relatives of the students would answer the set of 20 questions. The response would be scrutinised and assessed for symptoms of stress and other psychological disorders.

Symptomatic students would be provided psychiatric treatment, the Director of Society, Prabhakar Immanuel, said while speaking at the inaugural of a 10-day training programme for a batch of tsunami-affected students from Nagapattinam here today.

The society has identified a group of 10 top rankers in schools in the affected villages and brought them to Tiruchi for computer-based skill development training. The initiative was part of the society's efforts to motivate the school children to resume their studies with confidence. Faculty members of the District Institute of Education and Training (DIET), Kurukathi in Nagapattinam district, was closely involved in the society's confidence-building measures among the school children.

Two doctors have been deployed to provide treatment to children who have been afflicted by skin and hearing ailments following the tsunami. The society was taken up the responsibility of about 80 tsunami-affected families.

Vanitha Daniel, Lecturer, DIET, said the psychological needs of the tsunami-affected children have to be addressed in a proper manner. The DIET was making attempts to identify the specific needs and problems of teachers and children, besides motivating them, she said.

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