Sharing Views with Caring Parents
By the divine will and Grace of our Guru Maharaj, HH Maharanyam Sri Sri Muralidhara Swamiji, a unique, 2-day event was organized by Global Organization for Divinity India Trust for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder on the 25th and 26th of May 2019.
The first day of the event witnessed a bunch of young children between the ages of 4 and 14, walking in curiously into the premises of Curioplay, Alwarpet, with smiles brimming with joy, to “Paint their mind” on paper. The colorful world of these little children took beautiful forms of art on the paper. It was heartening to see many parents and volunteers bringing their children from far off places and sharing their joy in their play with the colors.
The second day of the event was one of a kind, where the experts from the realm of Autism Spectrum Disorder, shared their time and views with the caring parents of children with autism. The event started around 10am at the Backyard, Adyar, with 35 parents, eagerly looking forward to interact with various speakers of the day.
The first session was with Dr. Vasudha Prakash, founder V-Excel Educational Trust. Apart from sharing valuable views and tips for the parents on various topics ranging from, keeping the mood alive at home, diet to focusing on the whole individual rather than on the deficits, Dr. Vasudha shared some beautiful poems written by the children, which showed that with a little room for expression, the children had the potency to bring out their hidden emotions and coined beautiful poems packed with the truths of life!
The questions from the parents on the aspects related to Speech, aptly set the stage for our next speaker, Dr. RC Perumal, Speech Language Pathologist from Sri Ramachandra University, who wonderfully guided the entire session in an interactive way, answering various questions, clarifying the ambiguities in terminologies as in non-oral and non-verbal and emphasizing the importance of focusing on communication and not just on speech. In answering specific questions on repetitive usage of words by children, Dr. Perumal, pointed out that the words used by these children, however little or big, are not random but are contextual!
The third speaker of the day, Dr. Muthulakshmi from Chettinad Srihari Vikasam, added more points to questions related to speech and gave an in-depth view of the domains of Occupational therapy and how it can cater to the varied needs of the children. Dr. Muthulakshmi brilliantly addressed the questions and the concerns of the parents with useful guidance and tips in the limited time!
‘Theatre arts is a wonderful platform for the holistic development of children with multiple challenges’, believes Dr. Ambika Kameshwar, founder, RASA India. The next 20 minutes, all were transported to the world of arts, where Dr. Ambika enacted to show that the world is packed with rhythm and music and how natural it is for the children to bloom in an environment of theatre and arts. It was impressive to know that a child can learn tremendously through enacting a scene as simple as picking a flower.
Last, but not the least, Ms. Mythili Chari, founder and director IRIS, presented autism in a different perspective, by narrating how her understanding of autism has changed over the years and how the children who supposedly came to her for ‘treatment’ became her Savants! She believes that children with autism are not special due to their disabilities but special because they are highly vibrating beings belonging to a higher plane, who come into the lives of the ‘chosen ones’ to elevate them.
The entire event was well received and appreciated by the parents that they requested more such events in the future!