Khajuri Kalan, Madhya Pradesh

Mother and child at SOS Childrens' Village Khajuri KalanSOS Children's Village Khajuri Kalan

SOS India has been asked many times to start a project for children with special needs. All over the country, there is a great lack of institutions which help mentally or physically challenged people to develop their abilities and to live in dignity. That is why it was decided to start an SOS Children's Village for children with special needs. The government of the state of Madhya Pradesh provided a piece of land, which is located at a distance of approximately 40 km from the town of Bhopal.

The twelve family homes at SOS Children's Village Khajuri Kalan have been adapted to the children's special needs. Each home has three bedrooms. The mother's bedroom is big enough to sleep one or two infants if necessary. The children's bedrooms are equipped with single beds for children who are severely challenged; the other children sleep in bunk beds. The rooms, especially the bathrooms, have been designed for children with wheelchairs or walking aids. Each SOS mother has a family helper who is trained to look after children with special needs. The families at SOS Children's Village Khajuri Kalan are smaller than those at the average Indian SOS Children's Village.

In addition to the buildings common to all SOS Children's Villages, there are several open-plan buildings where physical therapy, occupational therapy and sports activities can take place. Since most of the children living at SOS Children's Village Khajuri Kalan are in need of long-term medical care,

Other SOS Projects in Khajuri Kalan

SOS Children's Villages has set up an SOS Medical Centre to provide this kind of care. This centre provides special education, hydrotherapy, physiotherapy and speech therapy. There is also an early intervention centre. Specialised day-care is available for 150 to 200 children who are not residents of the SOS Children's Village. These children can also benefit from the services of the therapy and skill development centres.

A parents' training centre provides training to parents of children with special needs in order to help them deal with their children in everyday life. This ten-day training has been specially designed by the Indian National Trust under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment.

The SOS Vocational Training Centre teaches the skills needed for independent living to youngsters with special needs. Up to 50 young people can be taught there. The centre includes training facilities, two youth houses, a multi-purpose hall and co-worker accommodation. It provides alternatives to agriculture related activities. The courses offered include brick laying and masonry, carpentry, weaving and handicrafts, metal work, and screen printing.