Children with disabilities in Asia are one of the most marginalized and excluded groups of children, experiencing widespread violations of their rights. Discrimination arises not as a result of the intrinsic nature of children’s disability, but rather,as a consequence of lack of understanding and knowledge of its causes and implications, fear of difference, fear of contagion or contaminaton,or negative religious or cultural views of disability.

Born disabled is not easy even in the West, but in a poor country is to be sentenced to a secondary role in society, for good. L’Albero della Vita helps children with disabilities in the South 24 Parganas, in India, in a day care center for children with mental and physical problems. In order to heal and to develop their skills through specific exercises and physiotherapy, we also help families with psychological support and practical advice.

In the district of South 24 Parganas, south of Calcutta, the Foundation L’Albero della Vita Foundation is working with the missionary organization PUS (Palli Unnayan Samiti Baruipur) to carry out activities in favor of children with physical and mental disabilities. South 24 Parganas is very poor area, divided into blocks, in which the families live in tiny bamboo and mud shacks with no running water, electricity and sanitation. Children who are born with mental and physical disabilities, within poor families, grow free of hygiene and adequate nutrition, completely excluded from education, lacking the necessary medical care for their condition. They are started in a particularly serious social marginalization.

12 years experience

Those of children with disabilities of 24 South Parganas are particularly difficult conditions. The project is aimed at alleviating social exclusion and negligence affecting most disabled children’s life. Therefore, it supports activities carried out by a day-care centre where 50 children with different physical and mental disabilities can have access to a physiotherapy service with specialised equipment and professional personnel. Moreover, the project staff works together with caregivers —i.e. mothers and fathers— in order to improve their care capacity thanks to the training carried out both at the centre and during the home visits, as well as to increase families’ access to the public social protection schemes they are entitled to.

Beneficiaries reached: more than 50 children suffering from physical or cognitive disabilities