Creating a Happy Story – Moving beyond Odds

Down Syndrome challenges accepted by Mentaid

When adversity strikes many of us sulk and get into a shell, but there are some who move beyond and create a better life for themselves and many others who are suffering from the same fate. Iona Kundu is one such female who showed that

If you have the will you can be the creator of change
moving beyond the ordinary doing something extraordinary

Life for this lady who is an M.Sc. in Psychology was not a bed of roses, her first born child was diagnosed with Down Syndrome, bringing in a lot of mental disturbance for her and the entire family. But as it was to be she did not let the situation get the better of her. This time of distress led her into thinking about other mothers who faced the same situation and were suffering at the behest of their children’s disabilities. It was then in 1983 the doors to the organisation called MENTAID were opened by her.

Bringing happiness to the souls and faces of Children with mental disabilities and creating a better future for them through proper schooling, vocational training and skill imparting practices has been the main aim of MENTAID special school. The transformation has been exemplary with students like Supriya Saha making the country proud.

This little girl who was born on 29.10.96, had all her developmental milestones markedly delayed, this situation made her parents helpless as they had limited means and were unable to cope with the tough situation and the medical needs of the child. MENTAID Special School came to the rescue of Supriya and her family, chiselling out a future for her that was unimaginable for her parents and many others.

After stepping foot in MENTAID at the age of six Supriya was imparted independent living skills, functional academics, language communication, leisure and recreational skills. Under the given holistic environment of loving teachers, understanding management and extensive care Supriya blossomed and made the country proud by winning a gold medal in 800m walk in Special Olympics World Summer Games at Los Angeles.

Joy and appreciation followed and the proud parents became the ray of hope for many others hit by the pain of their children’s mental illness. But the efforts of the organisation in identifying the expertise of Surpiya and then kindling it through training camps across the country is the stepping stone for her success.

Iona’ s son is terminally ill and this has put a restrain to her passion of being around these children from 9 to 7 everyday, but her spirit and enthusiasm is contagious and floats through the air, giving strength and courage to many. MENTAID is certainly an institution which has given the kids with mental disability, a reason to live and has shown to the world that where there is will there is a way.

Bringing hope to someone in despair is the best way to lead a life – Iona Kundu
Mentaid supporting mentally disabled children