University of Delhi, April 2011 – The salience of attending an early childhood education (ECE) program in a child’s life is unquestionable in terms of laying foundations for life-long learning. The benefits of ECE should reach the most deprived and unreached children. And without doubt, children with disabilities (CWD) are the most neglected and deprived of all children. With support from the University Grants Commission, a research project is being conducted at the Institute of Home Economics, University of Delhi with the broad objective of getting the CWD out from their homes to attend the anganwadi preschool programs.
As a first step, a broad based enumeration has been done to ascertain the number of CWD attending 100 anganwadi centers in South Delhi. Then, a book titled Stimulating Development in Children with Disabilities at Angawandis and at Home: A Practical Guide along with training aids has been developed. This book completes the set of books on disabilities developed by the principal investigator, Dr. Geeta Chopra, on Prevention of Disabilities and another on Early Detection of Disabilities. These three books and the other training aids are available in English and Hindi. These are written in a simple communicative style and are profusely illustrated.
Of the 100 anganwadi workers enumerated for attendance of CWD, 25 have been trained in April 2011 on “early detection and general strategies to manage children with disabilities in the anganwadi centers”. The project is currently ongoing and angawadi workers, over the next few months, will continue the effort of including children with disabilities in the angawandi centers. Any comments and questions on the author’s research may be written to firstname.lastname@example.org.