The Arali Disability Centre in the Samtskhe-Javakheti community
in Georgia is a sibling centre to the Arali Sunday School
. Given the high number of children and adults suffering from disabilities in the area, the Arali Monastery opened the disability centre to give the community’s most vulnerable a safe place to learn and play. Childview
visited the Arali Disability Centre this past December. Here are photos of our time spent at the centre.
An adult who visits the Arali Disability Centre, which opened in 2005, shows her drawing to a peer. Every year, the centre holds an art exhibition featuring works created by its attendees. Proceeds from the exhibition go toward funding the centre’s yearly operations. The centre also receives some funding from the municipal government.
Children and adults participate in an activity at the centre. This year, there are 10 students who regularly visit the centre. Their ages range from eight to 29. Eka (standing) has taught here for eight years. The most important skill she says she has is her love for the ones she teaches.
The Arali Disability Centre’s recently renovated washroom. Many of the children and adults who visit the centre do not have access to a proper one at home. World Vision funded the renovations, as well as provided kitchen supplies and some class materials.
Eka poses for a photo. Classes run three days a week at the centre. “It’s a chance for the children to get out of home, to make friends,” Eka says. She started working here because of her passion to teach. “I didn’t realize how difficult it would be,” she admits. But the work doesn’t depress her. “Good days are very frequent here.” And what is a good day like? “It’s a day when we prepare for a performance—when kids get to dance to music.”
Guram, 22, smiles for a photo. He and his sister, Lily, 24, have attended the centre for the past two years. Guram’s mother, Tsiala, says the centre has been very good for her son. “I am so grateful. He has learned so much.”
Tsiala at her home. Tsiala is a mother of five; four of her children live with her, three of whom have disabilities. She says Guram and Lily are always eager to visit the centre. “They are always ready early and waiting for the car [that takes them to the centre].”
Guram sits on his bed at home. His mother has simple dreams for her children. “I wish them to be healthy,” Tsiala says. “I wish them to be happy.”
Tsiala (centre) with three of her five children outside their home. From left to right: Guram; Gogita, 16; Lily.See related photo gallery: The Arali Sunday School >>
________This article was published on February 27, 2014.