14th National Workshop

The 14th National Workshop was conducted on 23rd and 24th of November 2017.

“The National Workshop organized by MNC was the 14th in the series and MNC has all along been conducting its National Workshops on Early Intervention in Intellectual and Associated Disabilities with focus both on medical and early intervention trainings aspects. The theme of the Workshop this year was “Early Intervention in Intellectual and Associated Disabilities – Towards Making Inclusion a Reality”. In fulfillment of the educational need for all children, including those with disabilities, the Government of India has enacted the right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act or the Right to Education ACT (RTE). Teachers in Mainstream schools / the parents of Special Needs children are often not adequately prepared and there is a need for a proper support system to be in place to help teachers, family, and parents to facilitate the child in the teaching-learning process. The Workshop seeks to address this. The two day workshop was planned meticulously both in terms of knowledge sharing and practical applications in class room situations. The sessions being conducted by the experts would benefit all in their day to day work situations. The workshop has been given accreditation status as CRE.”

Today, parents are aware, even in the rural areas, that their children should be provided with early intervention services, at the earliest, and as soon as the disability is noticed. The community now understands that the parents need easily affordable and accessible support systems in reaching out to the services for their children. And the clarion call for legislations as been from the voice of the people, which has been responded to with the passing of the rights of Persons with Disabilities 2016 as an Act parliament. We are still not yet an inclusive society in its totality. Early Childhood Education must therefore include the blue print for education of children with special needs. It must be based on the where and how it should be provided, center based, home and community based. It must include who should provide and when, what would be the resources needed, both specialized human resources and special training and educational materials. In making of the blue print into a happening, and in making the plans feasible and sustainable, the ideal situation would be through optimizing resources through the convergence of services, in a public private partnership working mode. It is towards such an inclusive happening that Madhuram Narayanan Center is moving, supported by its staff, parents and by the community.”

Every conference leads to more learning, with interaction between people, professionals and experts. Awareness of Early Intervention and its importance is still inadequate among parents, care givers and even among professionals. Therefore an annual workshop is a platform to encourage knowledge sharing between people at grassroots level and experts from various related fields, to help update their skills and knowledge, networking etc. to set them thinking and maybe innovating. It also helps to change people’s outlook towards the importance of early intervention. Even experts have a chance to see for themselves how the theory gets implemented at the grassroots and the need for developing new services and research studies.

This time the focus was on “Inclusion”. There were three workshops on Inclusion. The participants had a feast on various presentations on the subject and had interactive sessions with the resource person. They voiced their concerns and doubts and even asked solutions for their problems.

After the overview MNC released its Social Accounts for the period 2015-2017. In order to assess its social impact and to check whether MNC’s activities were in line with its Vision of providing Early Intervention for young children with Intellectual disabilities, MNC submitted its social accounts for audit and has successfully completed three cycles for the period 2008-2009, and the 2010-2012, 2013-2015. The experience and clarity gained during the first three Social Audits were very helpful and provided valuable information for the functioning of the center, resulting in the exercise being taken up once again for the fourth time for the period 2015-2017. The Social Audit book was released by Mr. N Kumar, Vice Chairman – The Sanmar Group and Chair – Board of MNC. The first copy was received by Prof. Camille Catlett who was the main resource person of the workshop.