Serving Local Communities

February 2, 2011
Dept of Social Work, Amritapuri

These past months have seen the Department of Social Work at Amritapuri reach out to local communities in Kerala, and serve them in many ways.

Work Skills DevelopmentA work skills development program was organized for staff at the Sree Narayana Missions Hospital in Kollam on January 29.

Eighty participants including nursing superintendents, nurses, students, reception and pharmacy staff as well as security officers attended.

MSW faculty member Mr. Renjith R. Pillai accompanied by second-year MSW students, Hima Jacob Fernadez and Umadevi D. facilitated the workshop.

“The workshop included sessions on motivation, stress, effective communication and importance of inter personal relationships,” shared the facilitators. “We used role plays and provided cognitive input. Most participants gave us very positive feedback.”

Life Skills DevelopmentEarlier in the month, during January 18-20, faculty and students participated in the Bharat Nirman Public Information Campaign at Karunagappally, setting up a stall at their exhibition.

The Amrita stall portrayed key departmental activities including the organic farming initiative in Sooranadu Panchayath and the recently concluded certificate course in disaster response and recovery.

The exhibits helped the two hundred visitors understand the resources available to them in this community.

The overall campaign focused on flagship programs of the Union Government and their implementation in the Kollam District.

Last November, the Department sponsored a three-day workshop on Life Skills Education for two hundred students of Standards 8-12 at Amrita Vidyalayam in Kannur.

Life Skills DevelopmentThe workshop goal, Building Psychosocial Competence, was met by first presenting theory and then leading participants through interactive sessions on topics including decision-making, problem solving, creative thinking, empathy and coping with stress.

“The class was entertaining, effective and made me aware of problems in everyday life,” shared Sharan P. K., an 11th Standard student.

Kavya D., a 9th Standard student explained, “The sessions helped me change my attitude. At first I was shy, but I got so many chances to speak that I forgot my shyness.”

Other students mentioned that these sessions taught them to assert their rights and made them aware of their strengths and weaknesses. Participants provided a greatly positive response.

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