Thursday, June 11, 2009
This is a project Hermann and I have been supporting for a while. I had met the initiators, a US American couple, in 2004, just before the project was starting and – thinking of my own mentally disabled brother – liked the idea immediately. “Green Pastures” is a centre for children with special needs in Astana, the capital city of Kazakhstan. Here they do not only get therapy, but also the parents and relatives can meet and receive information about their child’s particular needs. Meanwhile they even have a day-care centre, where the children can acquire some abilities which in western countries would be taught in special schools. Thinking of the fact that in many countries of the former Soviet Union disabled people are at the lowest end of society and many children are hidden by their parents because they fear the “shame”, not to talk about therapy or schooling for such kids, this centre makes a remarkable difference and I hope that by and by it also contributes to changing the view of the local society on disabled people!