Inclusivity for unrecognised stars

December 2, 2013

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Much like unrecognised stars in the vastness of the night sky, children with special needs remain largely invisible in mainstream society. Therefore, while it is important to foster learning and social inclusivity for all children, it is particularly imperative for those with special needs.

Much like unrecognised stars in the vastness of the night sky, children with special needs remain largely invisible in mainstream society. Therefore, while it is important to foster learning and social inclusivity for all children, it is particularly imperative for those with special needs.

In addition to the challenges of poverty, being fully participating members of society can be far more difficult for children faced with physical and attitudinal barriers. To address part of this issue, BRAC’s education programme began operating a unit for children with special needs (CSN). The unit’s purpose is to integrate children with mild to moderate degrees of disabilities into BRAC schools while ensuring their involvement in mainstream education and society. There are currently 46,261 CSN students enrolled in BRAC schools across Bangladesh.

Besides classroom-specific CSN policies, the unit aims to nurture greater independence in special needs children through national sports, running small grocery stores and cultural activities. Recently BRAC’s CSN students were featured on an Eid-ul-Adha special on Bangladesh Television (BTV). The show’s title, Ochena Tarar Mela, alludes to society’s need to better acknowledge the talents of children with disabilities, who are otherwise “unrecognised” stars in society.

Today marks the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, and this year’s theme is breaking barriers and opening doors for an inclusive society and development for all. The following video gives you a glimpse of BRAC’s CSN students. As stars of this show, they demonstrate that when given equal opportunities, they can shine as brightly as any other child.

Click here to learn more about BRAC’s education programme and CSN unit.

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