3. Child Care
At a Glance>>
- Shrimad Rajchandra
Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)
- Shrimad Rajchandra
District Early Intervention
- Shrimad Rajchandra
Child Malnutrition Treatment Centre (SRCMTC)
- Shrimad Rajchandra
Mid-Day Meal Programme
- Shrimad Rajchandra Life
- Shrimad Rajchandra Kala Utsav
- Shrimad Rajchandra
Remedial Education and
Children are the future of the nation and just as delicate buds, they too, especially the underprivileged and unfortunate ones, need careful nurturing and care in order to blossom to the fullest. The environment in which a large percentage of Indian children live in is unstable and fraught with difficulties. Rural children are especially confronted with a myriad problems: lack of opportunities, illiteracy, poverty, parental neglect, ill-health, inadequate healthcare and many others. The poverty trap captures many such innocent, and poor children who are then forced into child labour in order to earn a livelihood, and, to put it quite simply – survive. However, this action is in itself self-defeating as many have to sacrifice their education – thereby denying them movement up the economic ladder – in order to support their families.
The ’Child Care’ programme aims to advance children’s rights and safeguard their well-being by offering nutrition, pre-natal care for healthy births, healthcare and education.
Many of the women coming to Shrimad Rajchandra Hospital (SRH) for deliveries are young (18-20 years), severely anaemic and weigh only 35-40 kgs. As a result, the delivered babies are premature, underweight and need highly specialised medical attention in order to survive. To provide tertiary care to protect these precious new lives, we set up a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). Now, the NICU is a key department at SRH and one of the most advanced in the entire Valsad District. Many new-born babies remain in the NICU for a month or more. Annually, more than 700 babies are treated in the NICU.
Shrimad Rajchandra Hospital's NICU is equipped with the following equipment:
- Neonatal trolleys with warmers
- Neonatal ventilators
- Bubble CPAP Delivery System
- Phototherapy units
- Multi-parameter patient monitors
- Automated syringe infusion pumps
- Volumetric pumps
- Central suction facility
- Oxygen hoods
- Highly sensitive and accurate digital weighing balance
Babies born premature or with low birth weight could eventually suffer from many serious, long-term complications such as impaired muscle coordination caused by brain damage (Cerebral Palsy), blindness (Retinopathy of Prematurity – ROP), hearing loss, severe physical disabilities, trouble remembering or learning new things (Cognitive Impairment), inability to move one or more body parts (Neuro-motor Impairment), Attention Deficit Disorder, and poor concentration coupled with hyperactivity and learning difficulties (Learning Disability).
At the Shrimad Rajchandra District Early Intervention Centre (SRDEIC), the primary focus is on preventing or minimising the occurrence of these physical or neurological disabilities and on enhancing the cognitive abilities of the babies. The Early Intervention Centre is the first of its kind in the state of Gujarat. It has been accorded the status of District Early Intervention Centre.
SRDEIC offers the following comprehensive services at highly subsided rates or completely free:
- Evaluation and treatment by a paediatrician, paediatric orthopaedic surgeon and paediatric neurologist.
- Dental services.
- Physical therapy and occupational therapy services to prevent or decrease difficulties in movement and other functional problems.
- Sensory integration, neuro-developmental therapy and services for oro-motor and feeding difficulties as diagnosed by our physiotherapist and occupational therapist.
- Vision services and early identification of Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP) by a paediatric ophthalmologist and optometrist.
- Audiology services by an ENT surgeon and audiologist for children with hearing loss and deafness.
- Speech-language pathology services for children with weakened muscles around the mouth, delayed speech and difficulty in swallowing.
- Psychological services including testing, counselling, consultation, parent training, behaviour modification and specialised learning programmes provided by a clinical psychologist.
- Identifying cognitive delays and providing intervention to enhance cognitive development.
- Lab services for routine blood investigations.
- Nutrition services to identify and manage feeding problems.
- Specially-designed learning environments and activities that promote the child’s development.
- Providing families with information, skills and support to enhance the child’s development.
Shrimad Rajchandra Child Malnutrition Treatment Centre provides children suffering from acute malnutrition with nutrition and essential supplements under direct medical supervision for a period of 15-20 days. Due to malnourishment, the children are more susceptible to infections; and due to these infections, they are pushed further into malnutrition. SRCMTC aims to break this vicious cycle and support the children towards a healthier future.Contribute
Shrimad Rajchandra Mid-Day Meal Programme provides nutritious, hygienic mid-day meals for school children. Nearly half of India’s children – about 600 lakh young people – are chronically malnourished. Recognising that the early years are vital for the physical and mental development of a child, SRLC provides free and nutritious mid-day meals to students from schools in the tribal belts of Dharampur and surrounding areas.
These meals are greatly appreciated by the children, many of whom travel a distance of more than 15 kms to get to their schools from far-off villages. The meals help boost their attention span and serve as a strong incentive to motivate them to attend school. Contribute
Shrimad Rajchandra Life Skills Programme provides value-based education and self-development training for underprivileged children through sessions and workshops for children in rural schools and orphanages, helping them blossom to their full potential and giving them a strong foundation of values.
Through the enactment of various inspirational stories, students in schools are exposed to practical value based learning and life skills.
Shrimad Rajchandra Kala Utsav is a platform for the rural youth to develop and showcase their inherent talents. Shrimad Rajchandra Kala Utsav was launched to help children foster these skills and discover their unique innate abilities. Organised as a talent competition that encourages children to develop and convey messages of patriotism, moral values and social causes, Shrimad Rajchandra Kala Utsav has witnessed the enthusiastic participation of more than 3,000 students from various schools in the talukas of Ahwa, Chikhli, Dharampur, Kaprada, Pardi, Valsad and Vansda; the children express themselves through music, dancing, singing and acting. The panel of judges include eminent personalities and achievers. Winners and finalists receive a cash prize for their participation, encouraging them to perhaps even turn these talents into potential career opportunities.
Shrimad Rajchandra Remedial Education and Learning (REAL) supports children with learning difficulties by offering customised support and intervention so that they can succeed in school and become successful members of the community.
Children with learning difficulties are often as smart as or even smarter than their peers, but they face challenges in reading, writing, spelling and assimilating information. Teachers and parents find it increasingly difficult to educate them adequately. To overcome the difficulties, children are provided with integrated care. Professionals work together with the family to arrive at common decisions on the management of the child’s present and future. Diagnostic assessment and remedial facilities are provided. In addition, children are referred to counsellors and special educators as needed. Parental support groups are created to cater to the needs of parents and develop a positive environment for the children.