Vijayaratnam Foundation continues its mission of making a positive difference in the world and helping those in need as it opens Taarana – a school for children with learning disabilities. The aim of Taarana (which means ‘awakening’ in Sanskrit) is to provide a quality education facility for young children between the ages of six and 12, who face challenges with delayed development in academic, social, and adaptive skills, also known as Mild Intellectual Disability (MID). These include ADD, ADHD, Dyslexia, Dyspraxia or Down’s Syndrome, etc. Most regular school programmes cannot accommodate children with special needs, so Taarana provides these individuals with a new opportunity to acquire skills that will help them fit into regular life, in a specialised curriculum while providing them with teachers who are specifically trained to work with children with MID.

The Vijayaratnam Foundation recently set up a temporary centre for Taarana in Taman OUG, Kuala Lumpur, and plans to develop it into a fully equipped and purpose-built school to cater to a larger number of children up to the age of 16. To read more about Taarana, click here.

To raise funds to make this project possible, the Foundation’s chairperson Datin Umayal Eswaran has teamed up with renowned traditional Indian dancer and choreographer Gayatri Balagurunathan, the Kalpana Dance Theatre and other talented performers for a fundraising dance performance, Dasavatar. Datin Umayal Eswaran, a trained Indian classical dancer who has performed professionally in Malaysia, Hong Kong, and Sri Lanka, decided to merge her passion for dance with her commitment to social work. In her interview with The Star, one of Malaysia’s leading newspapers, Datin Umayal talks about her comeback on stage and the purpose for  doing it. Click here to read this story.

In addition, Datin spoke to the Malaysian Reserve about her charitable activities to support children in need, and her preparation for the Dasavatar performance.

To listen to Datin’s interview on BFM 89.9 Radio, click here.

‘Dasavatar will be performed from 4-6 March 2011 at 8 pm (local time) at the Auditorium Dewan Bandaraya Kuala Lumpur, Menara DBKL. For more information on Taarana, visit www.vf.org.my.