Work at Centre for children with disabilities complete
New facilities for Children with disabilities
In March 2005, when we first visited the Centre for children with disabilities near Galle, it needed help to improve the facilities. It also needed help to cut its running costs: providing accommodation for volunteer therapists, some from abroad, was straining its limited funds.
The new audiology unit
New therapy hall in use
The number of children registered at the Centre had also increased and it needed additional facilities. Some 80% of the children attending the Centre have speech problems. An accurate assessment of their hearing is critical in ensuring that they receive the right treatment.
The centre now has 300 patients. There is an even greater demand for the Centre as it is the only one of its kind in the Southern Provinces. It is manned by largely by volunteers.
Senahasa has now built a new therapy hall, accommodation on site for two therapists, and a safe external therapy area. A new Audiology Unit – the first of its kind in the Southern Province – has also been opened.
The Audiology Unit will be manned by technicians from the nearby Karapitiya Hospital under the overall control of the ENT consultant there, Senaka Welendawe. The technicians have been sent for training in India.
The aim of the Centre is to help the children live full lives in the community including attending mainstream schools. Much of the therapy is geared towards the parents so that they can continue to work with the children at home to speed their progress.
Senahasa has also part funded a paediatric nurse for the Centre for six months. Jennie Hawkes has experience of practice management and working with children.
Viv Knowland who also worked voluntarily at the Centre offering massage for the children set up a fund to buy specialist wheelchairs for children. The specialist chairs helpe the children become more involved in day to day life.
The Centre is run by the Senehasa Resource Centre for Children, which although shares a name with Senahasa Trust, is a separate organisation.