Udupi: Bishop Gerald Lobo lays foundation stone for Manasa Autism Centre at Pamboor

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By Eugene DSouza
Bellevision Media Network

Udupi/Pamboor, 5 Apr 2018: Bishop f Udupi Diocese, Most Rev. Dr. Gerald Isaac Lobo laid the foundation stone for the  Manasa Autism Centre on Thursday, 5 April 2018 in the premises of the Manasa Rehabilitation and Training Centre, Pamboor in the presence of present and past office bearers and members of the Catholic Sabha  of Mangalore and Udupi Pradesh, Manasa Rehabilitation and Training Centre Trustees, staff and students as well as the supporters and well-wishers of the institution.


Elroy Kiran Crasta, treasurer of Manasa Rehabilitation and Training Centre briefly narrated the background of the foundation of the Manasa Rehabilitation and Training Centre at Pamboor and its progress during the last 20 years and welcomed Bishop Gerald Lobo and other dignitaries present for the foundation stone laying ceremony.


Bishop Gerald Isaac Lobo conducted the prayer service assisted by Fr. Ferdinand Gonslaves-Parish priest of St. John the Evangelist Church, Shankerpura and Spiritual Director of the Catholic Sabha, Udupi Diocese and Dr. Gerald Pinto-former Principal of Milagres College, Kallianpur and  former Secretary of Manasa.


Following the prayer service, Bishop Gerald Lobo blessed the stones and himself laid the first stone into the specially dug pit.



Soon after the stone laying ceremony at eh site, a brief stage programme was held in the Manasa hall presided over by Bishop Gerald Lobo. Other dignitaries on the dais included Fr. Ferdinand Gonsalves, Fr. Harold Pereira-Director of Eighteen Diocesan Commissions, Valerian Fernandes-President of Catholic Sabha, Udupi Pradesh, Anil Lobo-President of Catholic Sabha, Mangalore Pradesh, Henry Menezes-President of Manasa Rehabilitation and Training Centre, Mrs. Gretta D’Souza-representative of Shirva Welfare Association of Kuwait (SWAK) and Sr. Ancila Fernandes-Principal of Manasa Rehabilitation and Training Centre.


Following the welcome address by Henry Menezes, Sr. Ancila Ferandes presented the brief report of the various activities conducted at the Manasa institution. Since the inception of Manasa, 594 students with special abilities have been trained and rehabilitated by the institution.  Presently there are 52 students with autism. Hence, it was decided by the Catholic Sabha to set up a separate building with facilities to train and educate children with autism.


In his address, Bishop Gerald Lobo appreciated the wonderful work that has been going on in Manasa Rehabilitation and Training Centre with the support of the Catholic Sabha of Mangalore and Udupi Dioceses. He stressed upon the need to identify and educate children with autism and said that this institution would be the first of its kind in India to be established and run by lay people. He hoped that the dream of the Catholic Sabha of having a special institute for the benefit of children with autism would be realized by the active and generous support of various institutions and individuals.


The students of Manasa presented the welcome dance,  Anil Lobo proposed the vote of thanks and Mrs. Reena D’Souza compered the programme at the foundation stone laying ceremony as well as the stage function.


What Is Autism?

Autism, or autism spectrum disorder, refers to a range of conditions characterized by challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviors, speech and nonverbal communication, as well as by unique strengths and differences. We now know that there is not one autism but many types, caused by different combinations of genetic and environmental influences.


The term “spectrum” reflects the wide variation in challenges and strengths possessed by each person with autism.


Autism’s most-obvious signs tend to appear between 2 and 3 years of age. In some cases, it can be diagnosed as early as 18 months. Some developmental delays associated with autism can be identified and addressed even earlier. Autism Speaks urges parents with concerns to seek evaluation without delay, as early intervention can improve outcomes.

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