& friends at Adelaide Bhavan
Adelaide Bhavan is an extension of the work of Valsalya Bhavan, responding to the needs of the older girls who are no longer eligible for continued residence due to an upper age limit. The unit, open within the Vimala Welfare Centre in 2008, and funded by Kerala Crafts, provides higher studies/vocational training, not normally an option for those with no parents to support them.
At Adelaide Bhavan, the girls learn new skills, and are helped to make the vital but difficult transition from institutional to independent living. Adelaide Bhavan addresses the higher education, academic or vocational needs of each girl. The unit provides continuity of care, while building on the programmes already undertaken, thereby empowering them into ‘mainstream’ life as responsible, self-reliant and dignified women.
Most of the girls at Adelaide Bhavan have moved there from Valsalya Bhavan, and have been in the care system for many years. Despite their difficult background, the girls are all doing exceptionally well in their late teens/early twenties. All but two of the girls are in higher education, and having seen their friends excel in their studies, these two girls have now also expressed a desire to return to study.
Aparna is almost 24 now, and has obtained her B.Com degree, and works in an office. She has also joined the staff at Valsalya Bhavan, since moving into the new building and helps to take care of the girls in the evenings.
The older girls too have sponsors, and this has been a great factor in enabling and equipping them to go away to college and study, some of them returning to AB at weekends or holidays.