Communication impairment exists in our society in alarming proportions. Ironically, the attention it receives is relatively minimal or nil. Blame it on lack of knowledge or apathy to a sad reality.Disabilities like deafness, mental retardation, down syndrome, autism, attention deficiency syndrome and brain damage can result in communication impairment. If diagnosed at an early age, most of these impairments can be corrected.
Vagdevi Centre for the Rehabilitation of Communication Impaired was established in 1996 by Smt Shantha RadhaKrishna and in 2002 was taken over by Avadhoota Datta Peetha Trust under the guidance of His Holiness Sri Ganapati Sachchidananda Swamiji, Mysore who has devoted His entire life to the welfare of human beings and is the force behind SGS Vagdevi Centre at Bangalore.
This centre, which began with 8 students, now has around 72 children and serves as a speech and hearing clinic for children who are hearing impaired, intellectually challenged and autistic.
The centre provides pre primary education, diagnostic, evaluation and intervention including educational intervention from infant stimulation to vocational training to communication impaired children in an integrated setup. This is the first of its kind in India putting all the communication-impaired children under one banner.
- Through medical camps and school screening, we identify children with communication impairment
- To provide hearing testing, hearng air evaluation and fit hearing aids to the needy - free of cost.
- Provide counseling to parents.
- Provide integrated Yoga therapy
- Provide early mother infant stimulation program to the rural mothers of deaf children
- Provide educational intervention at pre-primary, primary higher secondary and vocational levels.
- Create public awareness through media.
Born and brought up in a middle class family in Mysore, Shantha Radhakrishna had always wanted to be a little different from others around her. Around the time she completed her pre-university education she got attracted to Speech and Hearing, which was a new field in India way back in the late 60’s. With a Masters degree in Speech Language Pathology and Audiology from All India Institute of Speech and Hearing in Mysore. She started her career from a camp organized in Coimbatore, where she worked as a speech therapist for the mentally retarded.However, her learning did not stop there. She went to Osmania University where she did a research in Kostich Methodology of teaching the hearing impaired.
After working as a research teacher in Balwant Rai Mehta Vidya Bhavan in New Delhi, for sometime she went on to do her MS in Speech Language Pathology from Oklahoma in the US.
She was instrumental in starting R.V.Integrated School for Deaf, the first of its kind in Bangalore.
In 1996, she started Vagdevi Centre with 8 students now has around 72 children and serves as a speech and hearing clinic for children who are hearing impaired, intellectually challenged and autistic.
When Datta Methodology came into being, there came about a system of learning which aims at enhancing the knowledge of children before they enter the first grade, in other words, preparing them for school. The architect of this system, which touches on imitation skills, motor skills, numerical and vocabulary skills.
Recognizing her contribution in the field of education/rehabilitation of handicapped, the State Government through the Directorate of Disabled and Senior Citizens Welfare has conferred her with the State Award in the category of special teachers for disabled.