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Home >> NPOs >> Nilam Patel Bahushrut Foundation 
Ms. Nilam Patel, 61, has been training hearing-impaired babies and mainstreaming them directly into normal schools since 1980. Her experience shows that if deaf children study in deaf schools, it is very difficult for them to integrate into normal society later. On the other hand, if such children are properly taught from ages 1 to 6, they can learn to speak and can study in a regular school right through the 10th standard. (Her thesis on 'Inclusive Education' at is an interesting read.)
Without basic education, employment is extremely difficult. And without employment, acceptance by regular society is also very difficult. Education thus leads to knowledge, self-esteem, self-sustainance, and a productive life.
Nilam Patel gives these tuitons on a private basis to provide for her own livelihood. But, she went one step further than most of us, and, in 1993, set up the 'Nilam Patel Bahushrut Foundation'. ('Bahushrut' means a learned scholar who has acquired knowledge through hearing.)
The Foundation has 2 areas of activities:
1. Scholarships and Prizes for hearing-impaired school and college graduates:  There is a very high rate of unemployment amongst the hearing-challenged due to lack of education. Even for reserved government jobs, one needs to be at least qualified i.e. SSC or tests. So NPBF has instituted these small merit-based scholarships to provide enouragement. Applications are invited from students in schools all over Maharashtra. 236 students have benefited over the last 10 years.
2. Marriage Bureau for the hearing-impaired: The aim is to help adults of Indian origin seeking life partners from a similar background anwywhere in the world. More than 100 prospective candidates are registered currently. Success is modest as NPBF acts as a data-bank rather than being involved in the actual match-making process. Match-making is not an easy task because apart from the usual religion-caste criteria, the medium of instruction in which each one has learnt to communicate is very important.
The Nilam Patel Bahushrut Foundation works on a very low budget. The 2 other trustees are mothers of hearing-impaired children. There are no employees. Establishment expenses are low as it operates from Nilam Patel's home. The overall income (via donations and interest) is between Rs. 1 and 2 lakhs a year.
NPBF would love to develop and offer a no-profit-no-loss home-based distance-education training programme for the parents in training their deaf babies. The cost of developing that itself would be about Rs. 10 lakhs.
Know more about the Nilam Patel Bahushrut Foundation through .