A Ludo-mobile
FOR CHILDREN LIVING IN REMOTE VILLAGES IN TAMIL NADU

A ludo-mobile is…

A vehicle carrying a complete game library. It is going every week in different centres for disadvantaged children to carry out playing sessions according to a specific method that enables the children to overcome their difficulties and to regain their self-confidence. The child freely chooses his/her game while having to respect well defined rules (taking care of the game, giving it back after playing, respecting others…). The leaders are there to accompany the children.

The goal

The general objective of the project is to favour the sustainable well-being of the underprivileged children and to enable them later to become active and responsible citizens. It also aims to bring new perspectives upon the notion of disabilities.

Beneficiaries
• 55 children with disabilities living in very poor conditions, from 11 months to 18 years old, living in remote areas and not being in a position to go to the Satya Special School
• 340 children coming from isolated rural areas and attending Sharana centres
• about 200 other underprivileged children or with disabilities, welcomed in our partners’ centres.

Background

Around Pondicherry there remains many isolated rural areas, where the depreciation of the social background implies submissiveness behaviours and low self-esteem for the children. This vulnerability is also experienced by children with special needs since disability is considered as a cursing by families coming from low social and cultural groups. They are neglected, often excluded from mainstream and in particular from school.

In this precarious situation underprivileged children are vulnerable. Many of them face problems of physical development (malnutrition, slow growth, lack of appropriate medical aid, which constitute as many hindrances for their development

• The economic background of families forces children to work since very young. As they have to take on adult responsibilies, they skip the necessary stages required for their development like play, carefreeness or socialization with their peers

• School is free and compulsory for all children from 6 to 14 years old, but 10% don’t go to school and half of them drop out school on the way. It concerns more particularly the low caste populations who, owing to their social status, are not treated the same way as their peers by teachers.

Children living in rural areas are particularly concerned :
• People living in rural areas are far from schools, means of transportation, hospitals and the lack of sustainable employment involves a great poverty
• People having a job often work in big distant cities, which means that they are away from home most of the year, thus leaving their children alone.

Children with disabilities in Pondicherry district In India more than 50 million people suffer from physical, sensory or mental deficiencies, which means 5% of the population. People with special needs are often ignored and they also have to face up to neglect, stigmatization, rejection or even violence and exclusion. Even though India now has a complete legal framework for the taking care of people with special needs, its actual economic growth has a very marginal impact on the inclusion of challenged people in society.

CDE’s role

Actions

Setting up of a round tour for the ludo-mobile in the villages around Pondicherry
• Training of partners’ teams on the fitting and animation of a playing session, a course delivered by a specialist in the field of play and disability, author of the “Handiplay guide” and member of the National Training Centre for Play and Game trades (FM2J)
• Awareness approach to disability for families and communities
• Diagnosis at the outset and impact assessment of our actions

Partners

The Satya Special School

Started in 2003, the Satya Special School is a non-profit, voluntary organization aiming to help children in Pondicherry, South India, to cope with physical and/or mental disabilities.

The Satya Special School sets itself 3 goals :
• Eradicating the stigmatization linked with physical or mental deficiencies, through awareness actions, directed to families and local communities, concerning disabilities, in particular the risks of intermarriage
• Making children aware of their responsibilities so as to increase their confidence and autonomy
• Providing rehabilitation programs tailored to individual needs so as to support the child better.

Sharana

Since 2000 Sharana organization has contributed to the development of underprivileged children and of their communities in the district of Pondicherry. The global approach of Sharana organization makes it possible to carry out development programs simultaneously in different fields : education, health, social and economic issues.

Lead Society

The organization was founded in 1996 by R. Elumalai who saw children in his slum wandering about in the streets after school and decided to look after them by helping them with their homework and by offering them non formal activities : dancing, singing, manual activities, museum outings, beach outings,…To-day Lead Society includes 3 teachers, 2 leaders, 1 dance teacher and welcomes 80 children, from 5 to 16 years old, every evening after school and every week-ends.

Rainbow School

A foster care centre for about 30 children and adults with mental disabilities and a special school in Uppalam village in the district of Pondicherry.

Suresh Darma Children Activity Centre

Giving about 30 children in the village (Chinna Muthaliyar Chavady, Kotta Kuppam) a good education with new and innovative games and activities connected with the community.

Samugam

Gypsy children living near the garbage dump of Pondicherry : a welcome centre for about 20 children from very underprivileged families, daycare for the youngest ones, community development : education, health, environmental issues.