THIRUVANANTHAPURAM:“See, that is my name,” Jeyasree says with an air of satisfaction and shows her brand new notebook on which she had scrawled her name. She proceeds to open a textbook and discusses the contents excitedly with another inmate Vidya.
The duo was discussing the freshly received study materials. The occasion was the state-level inauguration of the ‘Akshara Santhwanam’ programme which envisages implementing literacy mission across the various Cheshire homes, old age homes and mental hospitals. The programme by the State Literacy Mission was launched by Health Minister K K Shylaja at the Mental Health Centre, Poojappura.
“Literacy is not just about learning letters. We have not been able to ensure total literacy in certain fields. Sustained efforts should be there to continue the literacy mission. The literacy programme can go a long way in equipping inmates to stand on their own feet,” said Shylaja. She said the mental health care centres in the state will be raised to world standards. The study materials were distributed by the minister and P S Sreekala, director of the Literacy Mission. The classes are being given to those who have completed their treatment and are undergoing rehabilitation. Around 30 inmates have enlisted themselves.
“Most of the inmates have good educational backgrounds and we intend to help them continue their education. The idea is to spread this initiative across all the care homes in state,” said Sreekala. The classes will be held every week on Monday and Friday from 11 am till 1:30 pm.