Akshar Trust, established in 1988, works to provide hearing impaired children an opportunity to be educated, and thus be employed and independent. They train teachers who work with the hearing impaired, and also provide guidance to their families. So far, 135 children have been educated and 253 teachers have been trained.
The effective educational activities conducted are:
Early Detection & Intervention: This is a specially designed program to make the child acquire language and speech skills so that he/she is a part of the community and can get access to education. Funded by the United Way of Baroda, the program sees interactions with hospitals, anganwadis, and orphanages to ensure that children with deafness are identified during their critical age (0-3 years).
Working with Amplification centres: The Akshar Centre has an audiologist and a speech teacher for the benefit of students. Audiograms are conducted free of cost. Parents are taught trouble-shooting, and use & maintenance of hearing aids. Equipment like group hearing aids, audiometers (including a digital one), induction loops, etc. are available on the campus. Free hearing aids are distributed to the more needy students.
Mainstreaming: Over 62 students have been completely integrated into hearing schools over the years.
Use of Technology: Paul Mason & Company has designed a 'Student Management System Software' which assists Akshar in administration, keeping track of the students’ history, admission, timetables, etc. more effectively.
Adaptation: Adaptation of curriculum and of textbooks is being done since 2005. Recreational activities are also organized.
Continuing Rehabilitation Education (CRE) Program: This is sponsored by the Rehabilitation Council of India (RCI). Special educators including principals and vice-principals from Gujarat and Mumbai have been attending lectures on deafness and teaching methodology. Akshar is in the process of developing these facilities at a new site so that their work can be extended to rural areas.
Teacher Training: This program is recognized by the RCI. Training is conducted in Hindi and Gujarati. Akshar is affiliated with Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University for a 2-year distance mode B.Ed. program.
Income Rs50 lac
Expense Rs58 lac
Source : Audit Report 2016
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