Healing Bhopal’s Damaged Children

Judah Passow photo of Chingari Trust press conerence, 34th anniversary Bhopal Disaster

Rashida Bee and Champa Devi Shukla, Managing Trustees, Chingari Trust pictured at press conference ©Judah Passow

Birth defects in children born to parents, or even grand-parents, exposed to Union Carbide’s deadly gas are rife. Compounded by the fact that children whose parents have only been exposed to the contaminated water are also being born with physical and mental problems, rates of congenital defects in affected areas of the city are believed to be seven times higher than usual.

The Chingari Trust Rehabilitation Centre is the only place to treat children born with defects as a result of either gas or water poisoning free of charge and has been helping affected children since 2007. The Bhopal Medical Appeal is proud to have been supporting Chingari over the last 9 years of that time.

Today, 30th November, as we near the 34th anniversary of the first disaster, the Chingari Trust held a press conference.

Chingari Trust- Press Release, 30th November 2018

Rehabilitation of Congenitally disabled children born in families affected by Bhopal Gas Tragedy and subsequent water contamination is possible through different therapies and proper medical care: Chingari Trust

Chingari Trust has been working from the last 11 years for the rehabilitation congenitally disabled children born in the families affected by Bhopal Gas Tragedy and subsequent water contamination. Currently, 961 children are registered with the Chingari Trust and out of these 283 children come to Chingari every day and receives Physiotherapy, Occupational therapy, Speech therapy, Special education, Mid-Day Meal, Medicines and Pick & drop facility and other facilities free of cost.

Mrs. Champa Devi Shukla, Managing Trustee of Chingari Trust said that “we are really happy to see lots of positive changes in the children coming to Chingari Trust, children who were unable to sit have now started running and children who were unable to utter a word are now speaking fluently and getting promoted in education as well. But, we have a deep regret that we are giving these facilities to only 283 children. 961 children are registered with Chingari and many more such children are born in gas and water affected families.”

Mrs. Rashida Bee Managing Trustee of Chingari Trust said that “Chingari is an example we have presented in front of this world with limited resources. But, Government has no dearth of resources and could have easily started working on this issue long ago. Government need to restart programs like SPARC, which was closed by the govt due to so called shortage of funds. Under SPARC, survey was done and 2400 children with cardiac ailments were identified. Government should also pressurize Union Carbide/Dow chemical to take responsibility for the rehabilitation of such children.

While explaining about his work Physiotherapist Dr. Rishi Shukla says that from our physiotherapy department about 180 children are getting physiotherapy treatment regularly. Tremendous changes are seen in these children after physiotherapy sessions. About 79 children are now living almost normal lives.

Nosheen Khan (Speech Therapist) telling about the treatment of these children said that we have about 140 Children in our department, who have shown lots of improvement after getting speech therapy. 32 children have started attending normal school after receiving regular speech therapy sessions.

While giving an overview about his work Dr. Siddharth Yadav (Occupation Therapist) says that 48 children are being treated by Sensory integration technique. Among them 17 children have started giving attention to different activities. 14 children have started making an eye contact.

Giving information about special education Mr.Suryaprakash Singh said that 248 children are getting special education from our department out of which 65 children have started going to normal school and 63 children have started doing their daily life activities.

Presently, 961 children are registered with the Chingari Trust. We provide complete assistance to these children in getting pension, Disability certificate, railway pass, aadhar card and other government facilities. We also raise awareness on identification of disabled child and pregnancy issues through community meetings.

Please consider a donation to help support the work at the Chingari Trust Rehabilitation Centre.

More photos from Judah Passow. Click to enlarge. All ©Judah Passow

 

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We believe Dow & DuPont must finally accept responsibility for Bhopal. Until then, The Bhopal Medical Appeal funds two award-winning clinics in the city. Both offer free, first-class care to victims of the gas disaster or the ongoing water contamination. The survivors have nowhere else left to turn – please help if you can.