Mindtree, in collaboration with Bal Bhavan and Smart City, builds a park for children with special needs

0 44

Technology consulting and services company, Mindtree, in collaboration with Bal Bhavan and Smart City, has built a park that will benefit an estimated 2.4 lakh children with special needs because of cerebral palsy, autism, and other disabilities. 

The exclusive play park for disabled children was inaugurated today by the Honorable Governor of Karnataka, Mr. Thaawarchand Gehlot. Spread over one acre of land provided by the Government of Karnataka within Jawahar Bal Bhavan at Cubbon Park, the park — the first of its type in the state — was built at a cost of approximately INR 3 crore under the guidance of health and child development experts, and award-winning design firms.

“Green spaces for those who access them differently are an important step towards accepting diversity as a part of life. The launch of this adapted park marks the culmination of a year-long effort to offer children with special needs a place and an opportunity to experience and enjoy an important part of their childhood in a safe, inclusive, and caring environment. Time well spent in a park is known to make a perceptible difference in the behavior of special children. We hope this park will help take some of the stress away from such children as well as their parents. We are grateful to the Karnataka Government for helping us with the land and to our partners for their expert guidance in making this park a reality.”

Mr. Debashis Chatterjee, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Mindtree

The park provides a safe, inclusive, and physiotherapeutic place where children with multiple forms of disabilities can play unhindered by their mobility aids or the risk of accidents, thus improving their agility, wellness, and social skills through community and multisensory experiences. Designed in the shape of a turtle, the park consists of different zones for a wide range of physical, mental, therapeutic, leisure, and touch-and-feel activities.

Mr. Thaawarchand Gehlot, Honorable Governor of Karnataka, said, “It is a social and moral imperative to develop inclusive and accessible playgrounds for disabled children. These children and their parents already struggle with numerous obstacles, biases and misconceptions in their effort to lead full and capable lives. Instead of adding to their problems, parks must become a part of the solution by enabling children with disabilities to gain from free and unstructured play just like other children. I congratulate Mindtree, Bal Bhavan and everyone associated with this inspiring initiative for taking the lead in addressing a vital need of disabled children. This exclusive park will provide them with an opportunity to feel happier, healthier and more connected with one another and the world around them, thus developing critical cognitive, emotional and social skills.”

Ms. Chikkamma Basavaraj, Chairperson, Bal Bhavan Society, said, “We thank the Government of Karnataka and Mindtree for making us a part of this exemplary initiative. Parks are integral to the health and happiness of cities, and an important part of local communities. They are successful only when they can be used by people of all abilities. This park will enable disabled children to not only experience the simple joys of playing, exploring, and building friendships, but also learn new skills, develop a sense of identity, and improve their self-esteem and confidence. It will also help others around them develop new perspectives and empathy by learning to appreciate and accept differences.” 

The design of the park ensures seamless movement across various play zones. Tactile pathways make it easier for visually challenged children to navigate their way around the park. To mitigate injuries from falls, all playing surfaces are made of a synthetic, non-toxic, and skid-proof rubber called EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer). 

The park infrastructure has been audited for accessibility by The Association of People with Disability (APD) with the participation of disabled children. Most of the play equipment in the park is made in India.

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.