TIRUCHY: In a first-of-its-kind initiative in the State, a private school in Tiruchy is going to construct a hostel exclusively for transgender students. Foundation stone for the hostel will be laid on Saturday. The hostel, exclusively for gender non-confirmed children, will be built in the campus of Sri Sivananda Balalaya school in Somarasampettai, with support from the Rotary Club of Tiruchy- Shakthi.
“Many such students, in the age group of 13-17, are chased out of homes. This is when hormonal changes happen and parents find out they are different from other children,” says the school correspondent Major.General NRK Babu. “The primary reason parents take such an extreme step, is because they feel they cannot explain the situation to their relatives and society. Several transpersons we meet on roads... They have faced the same plight...”
Babu says parents need not worry anymore as the school was starting such a service. “The motive is to provide the children a safe learning environment and a platform to succeed.” The school is also planning to provide counselling for such students to deal with societal issues. “Lot of students tend to lose their careers at this juncture because they have no support. We want to help them prove they are not less than any other children.”
The hostel will be built at a cost of Rs 32 lakh and will be able to house at least 40 children. The construction is expected to be complete by January 2020. “We are planning to enroll students from the 2020-2021 academic year,” Babu said. “Students from any part of the country are welcome. Soon, we will launch an awareness campaign to reach out to parents.”
Stressing the importance of awareness, Murali Karthik of Sevai-Child Line said, “We appreciate the move. But the utmost importance needs to given for awareness, as people and children need to know that such a facility exist. Else it will fail to help them.”
P Mohana Ammal Nayak, Director of All Indian Aravanigal Right and Rehabilitation Centre said, “We welcome this move and this can be a good platform for the children to continue pursuing education. Several cases of parents not accepting their children have been reported, we hope this facility can change the trend.”