Indo - Belgie Friendship Hostel for the Physically Divyang Boys

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Indo - Belgie Friendship Hostel for the Physically Divyang Boys - Building Photo

People who are paraplegic or quadriplegic or those who face immobility in any particular part of the body face the worst trauma of all. These children can see, hear, think, and talk like regular people. They long to walk, run, play, and dance like others, but when their body refuses to cooperate, they are only left with subdued emotions and desires.

The General Assembly of the United Nations declared the year 1981, the International Year of Disabled Persons. That was when our special education institutions conducted a survey in the Palanpur sub-division through which they found that there were 254 visually impaired, 137 hearing-impaired, and 485 physically challenged Divyangs in Palanpur. By this time, we had started schools and centres for children with visual and hearing impairments, but there were no such facilities in the district for the physically challenged.

In 1984, Mr. Kinsbergen, the Governor of Antwerp Province (Belgium), came on a visit to Vidyamandir. Out of all the campuses, Mamtamandir touched him the most, which made him pledge to donate toward constructing a hostel for our physically Divyang students. His charity gave Mamtamandir a hostel in 1985, which went on to become the epitome of the friendship between India and Belgium.