Press Conference at the unveiling of a residence Care, Rehabilitaion, Education, Speech, Physio/occupational Therapy Center.

The Sedoo Initiative for Children with Special Needs (SECHILD) unveiled a residence care, special education, rehabilitation, physio/occupational therapy home-SECHILD Center at No. 11 Phase3, 2nd Gate Trademore Estate Lugbe, Airport Road in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory of Nigeria. SECHILD Center is the Voice and administrative arm of SECHILD.
The event was well attended by a cross section of the Nigerian society, government officials, members of charity organizations, development partners, religious bodies, parents/care givers of children with special needs, friends of SECHILD, partners, supporters and the media.
Kawan Aondofa-Anjira (Mrs.), President and founder of SECHILD while welcoming guests at the launch of SECHILD Center said the Sedoo Initiative for Children with Special Needs-SECHILD was conceived and developed from their experience her husband Aondofa and she in nursing TWO of their four children Sedoo and Aondofa who were born with some diagnostic category that made them children with special needs. Sedoo (to whom the Organization is named. our precious and pretty Daughter was born on August 22, 2005, with cerebral palsy while her brother Aondofa Joshua was born on January 18th, 2007, also with cerebral palsy.

She explained that SECHILD is an experience-based NGO. Their experience in caring for two children born with special needs in a society where there is so much ignorance, nonexistent support centers, lack of awareness on such conditions and the painful, difficult and huge challenges of raising these children.
According to the President Kawan Aondofa-Anjira Mrs., ignorance, nonexistent support centers, traditional myths, absence of professional assistance and the frustration of raising children with special needs coupled with firsthand experience of the trauma and painful experience of what parents and care givers especially mothers of children with special needs go through and the desire to establish an institution for similar children with the reservoir that provides children with cerebral palsy and other disorders, families and their caregivers with access to comprehensive information and resources led to the founding of SECHILD. She said the experience is emotionally drenching, frustrating, challenging, painful, financially tasking, time consuming and most demanding.

Kawan Aondofa-Anjira (Mrs.), President and founder of SECHILD explained that the Sedoo Initiative for Children with Special Needs is registered by the Corporate Affairs Commission under part “C’ of the Companies and Allied Matters Act 1990 with RC No. 42610 as a not-for-profit, community driven development and non-governmental charitable organization committed to an often neglected target group within the Nigerian Society; vulnerable local children with special needs focused on improving the lives of children with special needs /persons including those with disabilities and medical conditions. The programme is to help these children regardless of their condition and needs.

SECHILD’s mission is to improve and promote the health and well-being of children with special health care needs and their families. The organization focuses on providing information to families and health care professionals. SECHILD’s work includes special projects, information, research and evaluation that impact care and support, quality of care, education and family partnerships in health care and support for children with special needs. In doing this, SECHILD is building bridges of partnerships and collaboration with a variety of groups to plan and implement grants and projects that improve care and increase access to support such children and their families.

With respect to education, the Nigerian National Policy on Education (FGN, 2004) states that the aim of special education should among others “provide adequate education for people with special needs in order that they may fully contribute their own quota to the development of the nation”. To achieve this objective, SECHILD has made adequate arrangements to cater for the individuality of the child in the care and support of children with special needs educationally. SECHILD Center will serve as a national network of individuals, professionals, groups, organizations, and agencies that specialize in serving those touched by all forms of special needs. The Center will partner Federal Ministry of Education who has the responsibility of coordinating with relevant Ministries and bodies’ e.g Federal Ministry of Sports, Women Affairs and Social Development, Health, Labour and Productivity, justice, National Human Rights Commission and Non-Governmental Organizations as well as International Developmental partners in achieving a better delivery of special education to children with special needs.

Early education of the children with special: SECHILD recognizes that early identification and rehabilitation of a child with special needs plays a decisive role in his/her further development. Such intervention at preschool age (0 to 5 years) also enables to considerably diminish the future educational needs of the child. For effectiveness of early intervention and education for the children with special needs, SECHILD will strive to establish direct contact and conduct coordinated work between the Care Center and the educational section.

Vocational education of the children with special needs: Vocational education and employment of persons with disabilities poses a serious problem in any age group, apart from requiring additional resources, it also hampers development skills of independent living of the young people themselves, their self-realization and integration. SECHILD understands this and is posed to improving this situation, SECHILD is committed to the necessity and has introduced a system of vocational education of the children with special needs at SECHILD center, as well as in the advocating and promoting of it in general educational schools and centers of professional education.

Individual Education Plan (IEP): The volume and the rule for children with special educational needs of which are developed according to the level of academic preparation and interests of the child with special needs are contained in the individual curriculum. The curriculum will be compiled, assessed and reviewed by SECHILD’s multidisciplinary team of inclusive education: the parent of the child with special needs and where possible by the child with special needs him/herself. SECHILD. It will take into cognizance all the educational needs of the child with special needs and work towards satisfying these needs as well as the additional activities which are necessary for achieving the goals envisaged by the individual curriculum.

Multidisciplinary team of inclusive education: This is a team of specialists which includes a Psychologist, an Occupational, Speech, Physio Therapists, a special Teacher and a general education Teacher. But at SECHILD Center the composition of the multidisciplinary team may change according to necessities and funding. The following specialists may also be invited into the team composing: a Neurologist, a Psychiatrist, an Audiology Teacher and /or any other specialist. The Center will with support have a permanently functioning multidisciplinary team within her employee/volunteers.

Special Teacher: Is a teacher with higher education, who is thoroughly well-acquainted with the issues of upbringing, development, education of children with special educational needs, as well as with the issues of their integration into society. SECHILD Center will engage a Special Teacher who is capable of using in practice the techniques of psycho-pedagogical teaching, pedagogically evaluating the children with special educational needs and compiling the individual educational plan. The Teacher will also be required to help and assist Care Givers at the center in the process of inclusive education of the children with special educational needs.

A Psychologist: A Psychologist will assist in psychological and pedagogical test: interpreting the test (assessment) results; obtaining, integrating and interpreting all the information related to the child’s behavior and learning; providing consultation to other members of the team in order to plan the learning process to be carried out based on the information obtained as a result of testing, interviews with parents and behavior assessment o that all of the child’s educational needs are maximally taken into account; planning and conducting psychological consultations with children with special needs and their parents; planning the behavior improvement strategies together with Teachers.

Resource Room: The center’s resource room will be equipped with all the materials-teaching means that are necessary for meeting special educational needs of children: adapted furniture, various visual teaching aids, audio-video equipment, computer, printer and copier. It will be served by the center Psychologist, special Teacher, Therapist and all those who take part in the process of inclusive education of the children.

Rehabilitation: Lack of institutional support for care centers working on direct care and support for children living with disabilities and those with special needs brings forth challenges that make interventions much more difficult. SECHILD Center will work towards bridging this gap and making available facilities, necessary infrastructure to support such children. We therefore ask for scale up support towards this achieving this.

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