For almost 50 years Daya Bai served the underprivileged in Madhya Pradesh, in 2018 decided to work among the endosulfan victims in Kasargod in Kerala. In a LIVE minute with Lifestyle Today News (Malayalam) on Mentza, Daya Bai talks of her dream project in Kasaragod.
Here is the excerpt from the interview, where Daya Bai says of what she wants to do for the specially abled children of Kasaragod.
When did Daya Bai start thinking of the dream project ?
I came to Kasaragod in 2018, for the endosulfan victims. They asked me to go for a protest to the secretariat. But I said, first I want to see them. That is how I saw the daycare center, where mentally and physically challenged children spend their day time.
Not exactly children, some of them were 18 and 20 year old. They come there to play, enjoy, have food and return home in the evening. The purpose of the center was to let the mothers go to work.
How some help came handy
I told some people that they don’t need just food, their potentials should grow. The children should be given to lead a good life as much as possible.
I asked them if we could give some therapy to the children. They gave me two options. Either you monitor or we. If we monitor, our board should be kept and they give a vehicle also. What is their problem in keeping a board, the children were benefiting. Otherwise there was no money, someone or the other would give food and that was it.
The magical effect of the Therapies
When the therapies started showing results, other children also started coming with their mothers. They were given therapies of one hour each. Physiotherapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy, skill development and so on. Now there is so much improvement in the children.
Sometimes the mother calls and says, “Amma, today my child talked”. The child might be 10 or 12 years old. When they hear their child speak at least one word they are so happy. Some kids who could not stand firmly on the ground, after therapy, could stand up on their own.
Lot of fund and time need for the center
Whoever calls me for a talk, I tell them, you begin a center in Kasaragod. Let the centers spread across Kasargaod. There is a requirement of at least ten centers. Nothing is happening. Because of a shortage of fund, I had to borrow 50,000 from a friend.
There are a lot of traveling kasaragod, in Auto, bus and walking. In Kasaragod, it is a lot of money and time. I want to start a center like the one I saw, where there was at least a house given by Suresh Gopi. So we had to think of other things only.
The location of the first centre
I will probably start first in a rented facility. I have selected a village which is on the Karnataka border in Kasaragod. I am planning to start an NGO also. Until now I never started an NGO or took any funding. I was managing on my own.
What kind of supports needed for the center?
There are various infrastructures we need. There is a house which should be maintained and cleaned up. There is a need for Kitchen utensils, chairs, the things for the children. For food the local people will do something, but still we need it. And a vehicle for the therapy. Also, I want to teach the mother some skills like soap making, candle making, tailoring. So I am planning.