Monday, September 22, 2014

Visit to Saksham Bal Vikas Sanstha


 Today we visited Saksham Bal Vikas Sanstha, it was totally a different experience. Saksham Bal Vikas Sanstha was created with a goal of changing this scenario and building the foundation of knowledge among underprivileged children to assure their socioeconomic development and bringing these children in the mainstream society with an aim to finish the barrier between them and the privileged children.

We went there to spread awareness about the Esha’s online audio library that Esha had started. They were very impressed by the audio library and also the collection of the recording we are having. We also believe that the transformation in the lives of these children can only when more and more fortunate people start actively taking part in finding a solution. And our audio library has been one of the thing which will help in the development of the children.



At Saksham, every child has a right to the opportunity to build a meaningful future. We felt that at Saksham they are doing a wonderful job and it was a great experience visiting there. And providing education means empower children.







Sunday, September 21, 2014

 Hi friends,

As I am Esha’s coordinator I m very glad to inform you that today I visited AADI- Action for Ability Development and Inclusion situated in New Delhi, India. The rural arm of AADI is AADI is headquartered in Dayalpur, haryana. AADI’s vision is of a world in which people with disability are an integral part of society, participating in the community and living life to the fullest, with equitable access to opportunities and services.

They were very glad in knowing about the Esha audio online library and they also said that its will very useful for them as well as for the parents of the children coming there. They were saying that this library is not only useful for the blind but for every disabled person can use this library.

I am very happy that through Esha I am getting such wonderful opportunities .


Friday, September 19, 2014

PAINTING WORKSHOP FOR BLIND

Hi friends!!!

I am Alisha Esha’s coordinator. Today I really had a wonderful experience. Today I went to Junta Blind School, Gurgaon for painting workshop for the children with major and minor sight loss.

The children were encouraged that even those with little sight to take up this wonderful pastime. It is very relaxing and a great way of enjoyment for the children. I had assumed that blind people would have little interest or talent in creating images. I was very wrong. It is clear that blind people can appreciate the use of outlines and perspective to describe the arrangement of objects and other surfaces in space. But pictures are more than literal representations. For them the importance of touch and feeling is more when creating art without sight.

They felt that they would always be an inferior way of creating art when compared to what could be accomplished with eyesight. But more than this though their entire perception has been changed. Children were very happy and excited. Students asked me to repeat this workshop again. And the best part was that even though they were having difficulties in making the drawings they were not ready to give up. They said they will slowly connect with this new thing they started learning. ; It was a really wonderful experience for both me and students.



















Thursday, September 18, 2014

REX Conclive 2013-14

This year, we spoke about the importance of adding a fourth cornerstone to dialogues around special ability and employment. That fourth cornerstone is - interest.

Raju Koli, who has been conducting the theatre workshops for the sighted for a few years now, shares his experience and how it has enriched him.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_b8yFdhSos

We believe that a lot of Raju's excellence comes from the fact that he is genuinely interested in his work. He loves it. what do you think?

Friday, September 12, 2014

Visit to The Institution For The Blind

I am Alisha coordinator of Esha .Today I visited a blind school “The Institution for the Blind” which is an oldest Institution of the country was established in 1939 at Lahore and later migrated to Delhi in 1947 at Punchkuin Road.

I saw there the Institution nurtures an idea to integrate the visually impaired into the mainstream of social life. It involves parents/professionals and persons with missionary spirit to contribute their best to help them in their rehabilitation. All at the helm of affairs make earnest endeavor to provide these children the opportunities needed for self-reliance and all-round development of their personality. The Institute also aims to inspire and inculcate in them the zeal and zest for comparable quality of life through their full participation and ensuring equal opportunities.

I went there to spread awareness about the audio library that Esha had started. They were all impressed by the audio library and also suggested the new ways to improve our audio library


The Institution is running two schools for the blind children, in Delhi .The admission in these schools are open only for the visually handicapped boys in the age group of 5 to 15 irrespective of caste, color or creed.  All modern amenities are available in both the schools. The education up to 8th standard as per the syllabus prescribed by the Directorate of Education Department of Delhi Government is given to the student. They are providing free education with special subject of Braille along with Vocational & Computer training.  These students can get admission in any Government school for higher education.  The performance of the students in these schools is quite satisfactory. There many co-curricular activities of the students..


It was really good and motivational experience.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

I am Alisha Maria, working as Esha coordinator; recently I went for blind school visit with the student of Shri Ram School. It was a very wonderful experience, after the visit my whole concept towards blind people was changed.

It is true blindness is a great physical handicap that prevents anyone leading a normal life. But physical blindness cannot destroy the vision of one’s mind. 
  
There are lots of modern technologies that allow the blind to connect themselves to the world of information. Digital technology has given the blind people ever-expanding opportunities for self development and professional growth.

In this technology driven world the blind will never find themselves lonely and lost. There a wide variety of machines that can provide them help and assistance to lead a normal life independently.
  
The technology used there to help the kids was amazing. There were Braille printers, keyboards for typing, software of every kind that aided the visually impaired kids with computers. There was this one software called JAWS that converted whatever was on the computer into audio to help the visually challenged. I thought that was a brilliant idea and would be very useful.

Education is a powerful tool which can bring about societal transformation very effectively. Therefore taking the students for a blind visit is necessary, an inclusive education will help the normal children to understand the problems of the disabled.Educating the disabled in special schools will only widen the gap between the normal and the disabled children.And in this blind school they enable the blind  people to compete withe the normal people.

I feel when they are able to study together a normal child will develop natural compassion towards the physically challenged and will render all types of help required for the disabled child to survive in the society.
  
I really felt very happy talking to the children, spent lot of time to share love and affection with them. Students listened to them patiently and tried to create a hope in them.


Sunday, August 31, 2014

Competitive Exams Audio Download

I am very happy to report this - the library has added 100 files the previous week and we released the update.

For this update, special thanks to:
1. Kuldeep Singh (Himachal Pradhes) - he runs a small radio show for the visually challenged and shared content all the way from Chamba. Thank you!
2. Indu Dahiya mam and her daughter Tanushree, for sharing the stories recorded by Indu mam for CLABIL.
3. Alisha Mariya, who joined us as a full time volunteer on August 20, and has already created over 20 files which are model papers for competitive exams.

Since we have a full time volunteer for some time now, please do send in your requests for content that you need, and we will be happy to work on it.

The online library is at www.braillecards.org/audio.php

:)

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Journey to Ithaca

Many years ago, a kind teacher gave us  a poem to read. The Journey to Ithaca.

When one sent 4 very intelligent young people to a not so well to do Blind School in Delhi, India, one felt just a little bit like that teacher and a little bit like the Kaveri amma in Swades.
(In that film, Kaveri Amma sent him to collect rent from a tenant who is not paying up. Watch that shot sometime for the look on Kaveri Amma's face. (couldn't find it on youtube) )

After reading these guest posts, one feels a lot of gratitude.. it is one thing to associate with Esha because one wants to do something good. Quite another to open one's heart to blindness as a cause. I often tell people that once you have visited a blind school, you are never the same person again. With these young people, I have actually seen that transformation happen. Their eyes light up just a little differently now when we talk about our work at Esha, our shared vision for the year ahead.

Today's gratitude, is for the Hope of Ithaca in our lives, and for being a small boat on that journey to Ithaca for some very young, very committed people. Many years later, as they send a young person to a blind school, mindful of the way they are about to change their perspective, I hope that they think of Ithaca, look up and wink, aware that they have now become a boat to Ithaca.