Keywords: India, Community based Rehabilitation, Early Intervention, Children with disabilities and their parents 

Tamahar Trust

Tamahar Trust is an NGO working in the Indian state of Karnataka. Tamahar Trust runs a centre providing a holistic early intervention service for children with disabilities and their families, including therapeutic interventions alongside emotional support and family empowerment through training. They have supported 350 children since 2009 and are developing a two-year training curriculum for other organisations to deliver their model following successful replication with 4 NGOs.

About the practice at a glance
Name of OrganisationTamahar Trust
Type of organisationNGO
Country
of Implementation
India
Year started2009
Funding modelBudget is 135.000 eur. Civil society funding (Corporate sponsoring, Individual Donors, …)

IMPACT

1) Increase in the developmental age of the children and in their emotional development.

2) Helps the family accept and understand the child, reducing stress in the family.

3) Improved mental health in parents 

We have treated 300-350 children in total (65 enrolled currently). Indirectly, we have reached out to about 300 children by training 3 organizations in rural Karnataka in our early intervention methodology and trained 40-50 educators. In terms of HR, we have 27 employees working with beneficiaries.

As part of the executive committee of Disability NGOs Alliance, I am involved in creating the standard Early Intervention curriculum for the state of Karnataka. 

THEORY OF CHANGE

We asked projects to outline their impact model (also called Theory of Change) – their main target groups, the key activities they offer these target groups, and what impact they want to achieve:

Target GroupActivityImpact
Children with Developmental
Delay due to brain damage (up to
developmental age 5 years
Early Intervention

Increase in Developmental Age
Parents of Children with
Developmental Delay
Training & Mental Health Services Improved handling of their child &
Improved family life because of
acceptance & understanding of
child’s disability
Aspiring Special
Educators/Therapists
Training on Early Intervention,
Early Childhood Development &
Disability Management
Ability to conduct Early
Intervention independently as
special educators/interventionists

REPLICATION EXPERIENCE

We have already replicated our innovation. We have shared  our methodology with 4 organizations in Karnataka till now and they have been able to implement it. Our training is a minimum 2-year engagement with 1 year of intensive theory and practical lessons, followed by another year of handholding in implementation as we move out. For now, we have this training module for established organizations. For freshers (Creating new resources), we are creating a course curriculum this year with standardized training manuals and content. 

ORGANISATIONAL CAPACITY AND STRATEGY

Having worked on and collected enough experience through this project for the last 10 years now, we have prioritized the creation of human resources and their dissemination as part of our next 5 year strategy. The vision and mission of the Trust clearly reflects our goal of reaching out to the disadvantaged communities with our knowledge. We have learned a lot in the last years and feel we are ready to take the next step. As far as international or cross-border dissemination of information is concerned, we have no resources currently funding-wise. However, as far as national dissemination of information and knowledge is concerned, we are working towards securing these resources. We are currently in the process of writing down our principles and pedagogy of our application; creating courses affiliated with Indian universities. So, we are already working towards this dissemination and how to go about it. We have a project owner for this program, with the necessary skills and seniority: https://www.linkedin.com/in/vaishali-pai-b4234811/   

MOTIVATION

We know we have a winning formula for creating human resources and for making an impact in the childhood disability sector, specifically developmental disability due to brain damage. We know our program works, can be replicated, will make an impact in this sector; and we are keen to establish this as the norm. So, we are keen on figuring out how this would work and whether for our country or outside the country. 

One of the challenges we hope to address by participating in the Impact Transfer Program would be large-scale replication which we are not currently aware of. We also wish to understand what it takes to cross international boundaries when you would want to share knowledge.