2014-present: Early intervention and skills development
Disability Centre in Goalpara, Assam (India)
In November 2014, SESTAA established an early intervention centre for children with developmental disabilities in Goalpara in collaboration with two local community organisations, Shishu Sarothi (based in Guwahati) and Shishu Vikas Kendra (based in Goalpara). The centre provides therapeutic intervention to the children and educates parents and carers on their management and care. Shishu Vikas Kendra has provided the land and building for the project, Shishu Sarothi is providing the technical expertise and SESTAA has provided financial assistance and specialist help for the project. This is an ongoing project with the objective of developing the centre into a well-equipped disability care centre for the rural areas of lower Assam, India.
The outreach camps run by Shishu Sarothi in Goalpara continue to provide early intervention services to children with disabilities (0 to 14 years) and capacity building of parents. SESTAA provides funds for the engagement of a project coordinator, field workers, physiotherapist, special educator and speech therapist. The staff hold regular outreach camps to identify, assess and provide therapy to children with developmental disabilities. The main activities undertaken are:
- Early intervention services (physiotherapy, speech therapy and counselling) to children with disabilities
- Survey in inaccessible areas for identification of high risk children and referring them for early intervention services at the centre
- Capacity building of parents and training to parents for home based management,
- Facilitating home visits by the therapists
- Creating awareness and sensitization in the community.
Supporting Prerona in Jorhat, Assam (India)
The support extended to Prerona, Jorhat has been modified to support the engagement of professionals to provide direct support to the disabled. Funding has been given to engage professionals to enhance the quality of services provided by Prerona to the disabled children in the school and from the neighbouring community in the area. The project involves the engagement of one psychologist and one speech therapist in Prerona, and for the engagement of two field workers in the Cinnamara area for providing door-to-door services The project cost mainly involves purchase of equipment and salary of the staff engaged in the delivery of these services.
The main aim is to fill-in the gaps in service relating to specialist help, therapy, home management and strategies to improve physical, mental and psycho-social rehabilitation. Engagement of a psychologist and speech therapist will be to assess, counsel and provide therapeutic help; whereas field workers will continue home visits to identified children, adults and their families with the objective of improving capabilities, raising community awareness and achieving inclusive community development.
2014: Ebola crisis relief
To help the disadvantaged in Africa, to mitigate the scours of Ebola and to assist towards preventing a health crisis that was threatening to ravage the world, SESTAA in December 2014 contributed a minor sum as a once-off donation to the Ebola Appeal of Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors without Borders), Australia.