FDMSE organized Awareness Programme for Parents of Children with Intellectual Disability – 30 Mar 2024

Outreach: FDMSE organized Awareness Programme for Parents of Children with Intellectual Disability – 30 Mar 2024
Type: Outreach
Event Date: 30 Mar 2024
Venue: RKMVERI, Coimbatore Campus
Campus: Coimbatore Campus

Faculty of Disability Management and Special Education (FDMSE), Ramakrishna Mission, Vivekananda Educational and Research Institute (RKMVERI), Coimbatore Campus, organized one-day Awareness Programme for Parents of Children with Intellectual Disability, titled “Empowering Parents: Mental Health Awareness and Support for Parents of Children with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities” on 30 March 2024. The inauguration ceremony commenced with a prayer song followed by a welcome address, the lighting of Kuthuvilakku, and a presidential speech by Swami Buddhidananda, Assistant Administrative Head, RKMVERI-FDMSE. In his speech, he emphasized the importance of believing in oneself and acting instead of overthinking. Using a purana story, he expressed the idea of self-sufficiency instead of comparing oneself with others. He explained that no one is perfect in this world, and we need to be content with what we have and accept what we do not have.

Dr. K. Kiruthiga, the District Psychiatrist of the District Mental Health Programme in Coimbatore, was the chief guest of the inaugural session. She delivered a talk on “Prioritizing Parental Mental Health: The Key to Thriving Families with Children with Disabilities.” Dr. Kiruthiga focused on parenting and special parenting. She reminded everyone that the world is surrounded by both positive and negative things, and we should focus more on the positive. She also talked about Mirror Neuron, the importance of self-care, different parts of needs, identification of healthy and unhealthy emotions, and relaxation techniques.

In the afternoon session, Swami Buddhidananda interacted with the group of parents of children with intellectual disabilities. A total of 43 parents attended the program and shared their concerns and problems they face in their day-to-day life. Revered Maharaj addressed the gathering by sharing small motivational stories. He mainly focused on the importance of acceptance of the situation when change is not possible, which leads to mental peace. Accepting and moving forward is essential to keep one’s mental health good. If the opposite is done, one may experience depression or anxiety. Swamiji reminded everyone that letting go of sadness and worry and moving forward towards happiness should be our primary goal. He also emphasized that prayer is the ultimate thing we can do without any pain for our pain in any situation.

During the final session, parents provided feedback and expressed their desire for a monthly session with Swamiji that includes their children. They requested regular yoga and exercise classes for both parents and children, as well as short trips to overcome monotony. Additionally, they expressed interest in sessions for treating and managing adolescents with intellectual disabilities, as well as periodic psychological counseling. Behavioral management of adolescents was also a topic of concern. Parents also raised their concerns regarding job placement opportunities for girls with intellectual disabilities. They also requested physiotherapy sessions after school hours (after 3:30 PM). Regular co-curricular activities for students, such as dance, music, and drama, were also requested.

Revered Maharaj, Swami Buddhidananda, has instructed Dr. Nandita Chakrabarty to work on conducting more similar programs in response to these requests. Dr. Nandita Chakrabarty, Assistant Professor, Coordinated the event.

Activity Coordinator(s)
Faculty/Staff Name Details
Nandita Chakrabarty (Primary Coordinator) FDMSE – Coimbatore Campus
Participant Information
Guest / General Public etc. 43 (Male: 15, Female: 28)

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