Ananda: Assisted Living for Adults with Autism and other Conditions
When Action For Autism started way back in early 90's, most people in India had not heard about autism. Persistent efforts have seen significant changes taking place at multiple levels: a diagnosis is received quicker, parents feel more comfortable taking their children to public places, awareness is reaching even smaller towns, and there are specialized helplines to assist autistic air travelers. One can even catch a flight accompanied by a guide dog! But, most efforts have been focused on younger people. Very few services look at adults and the aging population of individuals with autism.
Most persons with autism require lifelong support in significant aspects of their daily life such as self-care, financial or in their vocation and employment. With extended family systems in India fast disappearing, society provides no viable alternative support mechanisms for persons with autism when they lose their caregivers and are on their own. Specialist residential centres, that can provide this support when parents are no longer there or are unwell, are barely existent. The worry of “What after us?” haunts most parents.
It is to fill this gap that AFA is setting up its ambitious project Ananda: Assisted Living for Adults with Autism and other Conditions, located in the village of Gairat Pur Bas, a pollution-free rural community 40 minutes from the Sikandarpur Metro Station in Gurgaon. Ananda will provide a space where adults with autism will work and live in an ambience of dignity and respect with full rights as well as responsibilities.
Ananda also holds educational programs - currently children from the villages attend computer classes while English speaking classes are on the anvil - and health camps for the surrounding villages.
The first residents have joined Ananda and we are on our way! We look forward to training and welcoming more staff and volunteers, and of course to welcoming more residents!
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Action For Autism is pleased to announce its partnership with Education Empowers India Foundation. EEIF is setting up an inclusive multi-discipline school on its Ananda campus at the foothill of the Aravallis, at Gairatpurbas, District Gurgaon, Haryana.
The School, named Irada, is to be opened for enrolment with effect from the academic year 2019 - 2020 for Class Nursery to Class V, adding a class each year thereafter.
Look up 'Ananda by Action For Autism' on Google Maps