In a unique initiative, Muskaan in partnership with National Trust (a statutory body constituted by Govt. of India for taking care of the needs of people with Autism, cerebral palsy, intellectual disability & multiple disabilities) has developed a residential facility for adults with intellectual disabilities. Located in south Delhi, our model of residential facility moves away from ‘care model’ to an empowering model of ‘Assisted living’.
The need for a residential facility for people with disabilities can be hardly overemphasised, they need support and supervision throughout their lives, particularly when parents are old, sick or pass away. The challenge is to conceptualise and create good models of assisted living that recognise not only the basic survival needs but also a whole range of other personal, social and psychological needs for fulfilled lives.
Muskaan has endeavoured to create a residential facility that will set an example and show the possibility and practicality of the model where residents are participants in running the home. The journey of establishing this facility was arduous. It took a decade to convince the Delhi Government to provide a community centre in Dera village on lease (located 8 km ahead of Chhatarpur Mandir).
Since the building allotted to us, was in dilapidated state, it was renovated and made habitable by investing Rs. 70 lakhs. The facility was started with 6 adults in 2012. Despite the risk of taking huge responsibility of life-long care of intellectually challenged adults, the Muskaan team went ahead determined to make it a success and showcase it as a possible model. The generous contribution by donor friends of Muskaan was critical in making a fairly decent infrastructure.
Developing an admission process, programmes, getting, training and retaining the staff, raising funds for its recurring expenses etc. are some challenges that team constantly faces. However, we are determined to find solutions for all the difficulties that come on the way in such an endeavour.