‘Finding the missing pieces of Autism’ workshop wrapped up in Delhi


There are about 15 million children with autism in India today, all of whom will join our country’s workforce within the next 20 years

Dr. Rachelle Sheely and Dr. Steven Gutstein from USA and Mrs. Kamini Lakhani from India trained parents of children with autism and professionals who treat them.

NEW DELHI, India – December 16, 2015 – SAI Connections, an autism treatment center based in Mumbai, conducted a 2 days seminar in New Delhi to find the missing pieces of autism. The event was held at Siri Fort in the city. Mrs. Kamini Lakhani, the founder and autism spectrum disorder trainer at SAI Connections, discussed the concerns of the autistic child’s parents.

The seminar empowered the parents to understand their child better and become experts in their child’s life. Parents and professionals in this field got to interact with consultants who have spent over 20 years studying autism. The focus of the speakers – Dr. Rachelle Sheely and Dr. Steven Gutstein from USA, and Mrs. Kamini Lakhani from India – was to shed insights on the lesser known yet critical aspects which are essential for children with autism to develop and become independent.

Dr. Rachelle Sheely and Dr. Steven Gutstein are founders of Relationship Development Intervention (RDI), an effective treatment program for autism fast becoming popular across the world because of the way it empowers not only children with autism but their families also. Mrs. Kamini Lakhani is the founder of SAI Connections, an autism treatment center in Mumbai, and the RDI Professional supervisor for India and the Middle East. The main points covered during the events were:

  • The importance of addressing critical areas over the non-critical ones which appear more urgent. For instance, parents and professionals make children with autism try to speak as soon as possible, but the priority should be on developing communication skills (verbal and nonverbal).
  • Building an environment which is conducive for children with autism to flourish and become independent. The speakers empowered parents and professionals to understand children and accordingly lay the foundations for development of children, on the basis of which children will learn to communicate, form relationships and grow emotionally.
  • The attendees got insights on the latest, cutting edge effective techniques from around the world about treatment of autism. Through case studies they also learned how to motivate children with autism to seek growth and become independent.

Autism Spectrum Disorder, also known as autism, is a disorder which limits social interactions and communication in individuals. The limitations are also visible in intrinsic motivation. In trying to develop daily skills in children with autism, parents and professionals often ignore aspects which are critical for the child to become independent. This further aggravates the condition, impedes children’s development and makes them appear ‘retarded’. Affected individuals retreat into their shells and find it a mammoth task to interact with others. There are about 15 million children with autism in India today, all of whom will join our country’s workforce within the next 20 years. And we need their expertise in helping India advance.

As parents, you must take hope. You must not settle for mediocrity – whether from yourself, your child, or your therapists. It is a marathon, not a sprint. There is no magic pill that will help you and your child conquer autism. Aahan wants me to tell you that everything is possible to achieve. You just have to work hard for it. Yes, autism is difficult. So what? Is your child not worth it?.” said Mrs Kamini Lakhani.

Dr Rachelle Sheely said, “Nobody knows a child better than the parents, who are the best guides for their child. Parents themselves can flourish as guides with help and support through training programs and resource kits, services that are offered at SAI Connections for parents of children with autism.”

Testimonials of parents

“The workshop shed light on many aspects that I didn’t know about autism,” says Viji, mother of Vishal who is on the autism spectrum. ” Dr. Gutstein’s tips on creating a conducive environment for my child to develop will help my family a great deal.”

“The professional training program interests me”, said Richa Singh, a special education consultant. “If I can help parents understand the child, and enable the child to communicate his needs to people around, a lot of families will be happier. I am going to enroll in the Professional Hybrid Training Program offered by Mrs. Kamini Lakhani in India.”

Many points which addressed myths about autism were discussed and cleared. Participants in each city said that they took a lot away from the seminars and were really happy to interact with Dr. Steven Gutstein and Dr. Rachelle Sheely one-to-one.

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About SAI Connections

SAI Connections is a Mumbai based autism awareness and training center constantly working towards empowering individuals with autism spectrum disorder to live more purposeful and fulfilling lives. SAI Connections also empowers parents and siblings of affected individuals to enjoy more wholesome family lives. For over a decade, SAI Connections has helped parents understand what autism is, and provided high quality international education to children and individuals on the autism spectrum. SAI Connections also conducts training programs for parents and families of affected children to understand the child better and help him/her progress accordingly. SAI Connections treats autism spectrum disorder (and all its forms like Asperger’s Syndrome, PDD-NOS and more) by remediating the core deficits and co-occurring conditions accompanying autism.please visit  www.saiconnections.com.

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