GOOD SAMARITAN RESOURCE CENTRE

GOOD SAMARITAN RESOURCE CENTRE, CHERPUNKAL
Samaritan Resource Centre is an Ability Development Centre. It functions as the State Learning Centre for the Rehabilitation of Deafblind Persons with disabilities in general. Its services focus on the integral development of persons with disabilities so that they enjoy a life of dignity in society.

KOTTAYAM SOCIAL SERVICE SOCIETY (KSSS)
In Collaboratoin with
SENSE INTERNATIONAL INDIA
Supported by
DFID - GLOBAL POVERTY ACTION FUND

VISION
An Inclusive Environment for quality living of Deafblind persons in society.

MISSION

1. To create an understanding of deafblindness as a ‘unique’ disability.
2. To provide services to Deafblind children and adults, so that their rights of equal opportunity and full participation is achieved.

ABOUT KOTTAYAM SOCIAL SERVICE SOCIETY (KSSS)

KSSS is a registered non-profit organization of the Catholic Archdiocese of Kottayam established in 1964 to organize social service activities in the operational areas of the diocese regardless of caste and creed. Its main target group comprises people below poverty line especially those in the marginalized sections such as women, farmers, widows, disabled etc. The society’s goal is to empower the people for development aiming at social transformation for a just society.

COMMUNITY BASED REHABILITATION FOR DEAFBLINDNESS

Kottayam Social Service Society is a pioneer in the Community Based Rehabilitation for Persons with Disability in Kerala. For the last 16 years, CBR programme has been working in five districts of Kerala. As part of expanding KSSS CBR programme, KSSS started Community Based Rehabilitation Programme for Deafblind People, as a new endeavor with the support of Sense International India and DFID, UK in the year 2011.

Deafblindness is a unique disability, it is a combination of visual and hearing impairments in an individual which brings severe complex problems of communication, accessing information and mobility. In addition to this, the social stigma attached to disability and poverty further marginalizes children leading them to isolation and dependency.

Rehabilitation of Deafblind persons through CBR is a strategy within community development for the rehabilitation, equalization of opportunities and social integration of all persons with deafblindness. CBR follows a comprehensive approach to the problems of the Persons with Deafblindness. It involves rehabilitating the person in his own family and community with the cooperation of the family members, community, and use of various resources available within and outside the community. We train the Deafblind person to live by themselves and to work according to their abilities so that they become contributing members in the family and in the society.

Kottayam Social Service Society which functions as the State Learning Centre for Deafblindness, with support of Sense International (India), works towards developing services for deafblind people all over Kerala. KSSS gives technical support to other organizations working in single disability for initiating services in the area of deafblindness. Our ultimate aim as a Regional Learning Centre on Deafblindness is to create an inclusive environment for deafblind people in society and ensure quality living for them.

SERVICES OF GOOD SAMARITAN RESOURCE CENTRE

• Activities of Daily Living: Specialized trainings are given for Developing life skills (feeding, dressing, toileting , independent living). The Activities of Daily Living are teaching through Calendar System.

• Communication Skill Trainings: Communication Skills in deafblind individuals are developed by teaching to communicate through turn taking, choices, routines, exploring together and play. Ability to communicate in a meaningful way is developed through Communication Systems like object "Symbol, picture symbols, sign language, Pre-braille and Braille writing, large print writing and reading, ready lip reading.

• Orientation and Mobility Training: Orientation training is imparted to have awareness about their surroundings and to understand his environment. For better functioning of limbs mobility development trainings are given.

• Therapeutic Interventions: Professionally trained Physiotherapist, Speech therapist and Occupational therapists are rendering services in the Resource Centre with modem therapeutic equipments.

• Sensory Room: A well-equipped Sensory Room is functioning and Sensory stimulation trainings are given to stimulate the senses of vision, hearing, touch, smell and taste for better functioning

• Alternate Therapy: Alternate Therapies Hydro therapy, Sand therapy, Music Therapy & Yoga are rendered in the centre.

• Sensory Park: Sensory Park is designed for deafblind and multisensory impaired children to learn with fun and play. Sensory Park have water pool, sand pool, fun games, mobility training facilities and sensory plants. Sensory plants help them to learn the nature around them with touch, smell and taste.

COMPONENTS OF CBR DEAFBLIINDNESS PROGRAMME

- Sensitization Programme: Lack of proper awareness and superstitious beliefs always keep the deafblind persons away from mainstream society. So Participation of family and community is very much essential for the success of this programme. The participation of the community is possible only through Community Awareness. It will help to change the attitude of the community.

- Early Assessment Programme: As part of the project, KSSS regularly conducts Assessment Camps by ophthalmologist and audiologist to identify the deafblind persons. Reassessment camps for the persons to know the current status and improvement level also are conducted.

- Early Intervention Services: Early Screening and Intervention Services are provided with collaboration of hospitals and facility of Oto acoustic Emission machine (O.A.E) for the screening of new born babies at Carithas Hospital. Early identification programme with the collaboration of hospitals and ICDS.

- Home Based training: Along with the centre based training, KSSS also provides home based training to the deafblind children with the support of trained field workers and special educators in the presence of family members.

- Home Based Vocational Training Programme: In order to make deafblind persons self-reliant and home-based vocational trainings are provided to all children above 10 years with the support of parents. Mat­ making, paper-bag making, handicraft making and broom-making are few examples.

- Inclusive education: Integrating deafblind children along with normal children, KSSS promotes inclusive education in the village schools under SSA. Here, Deafblind children who are self-dependent are brought to normal schools and are given special training in classes set apart for them.

- Regular Medical camp: Regular medical camp is the inevitable part of the programme. Every three months, KSSS conducts medical camps delivering services of a Neurologist, Physiotherapist and Speech Therapist. Regular medical help for the deafblind children to understand the improvement status and next area of intervention is thus ensured.

- Surgery and Assistive devices: As part of the programme, surgery expenses and assistive devices such as Hearing Aids, CP Chair, Caliper Shoe, Spectacles and Physiotherapy equipments are given to the needy persons.

- Self Help Groups: An integral part of the Rehabilitation Programme is the inclusion of deafblind persons in CBR SHGs. Through SHGs they share the problems and find solutions and work as a team. In the SHGs they deposit their savings and get credit for fulfilling their needs.

- Case Review Committee (CRC): The project team has a Case Review Committee to assess the activities and to ensure perfect implementation of the programme at grassroots level. The Committee includes project implementation team and experts. The Committee meets every Wednesday and evaluates the activities of the past days and works out action plan for the coming days. The weekly CRC helps workers to share their problems faced and team finds solutions.

- Income Generation Programmes: Rehabilitation will be complete only when the Deafblind person starts to lead an independent life as an earning member in society. For this, KSSS facilitates Income Generation programmes for the deafblind persons with the support of their family members and thus gradually come of self-reliance.

- Counselling Services: Centre-based and Barefoot Counseling is provided to deafblind persons as well as their family members for better rehabilitation.

- Parents' Network Programme: Parents' participation play a vital role in the r habilitation of deaf blind persons. Therefore, a strong and vibrant Parents Network has been fanned and every month they hold a meeting.

- Exposure visits: Deafblind persons are taken annually to various places for exposure as it helps for mental relaxation, social interaction and education.

- Immunization: Constant awareness dissemination is given so that people are motivated to ensure immunization of their children below the age of five. Through house visits and awareness through SHGs, people are made aware of the need and importance of vaccination.

- Mother and Child Health programmes: Education on Care and precaution during pregnancy are given to all women through this programme. Mothers are made aware of the milestones to be achieved by children and precaution to be taken to minimize chances of deafblindness.

- Advocacy & Lobbying: Every year State Level Advocacy meetings are conducted to formulate new policies and advocate for the rights of the Deafblind people. Representatives from disability sector, social workers, and government officials participate in the meetings.