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Empowering Inclusivity

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Empowering Inclusivity: U.S. Consulate & Museum of Possibilities Unite for Climate Change and Disabilities Discussion

In a groundbreaking collaboration, the U.S. Consulate General Chennai partnered with the Museum of Possibilities for a pivotal discussion on “Climate Change Impacts on People with Disabilities” on 29.09.2023. The event featured the esteemed Mr. Jason Strother, a disability rights activist, entrepreneur, Fulbright alumnus, and multimedia journalist, sharing profound insights at the Museum of Possibilities in Chennai. Joined by Ms. Hindumathy from MSSI Chennai Chapter, a medical social worker, and representatives from over 30 organizations, the discussion emphasized the urgent need to address the disproportionate effects of climate change on individuals with disabilities.

The dialogue explored the vulnerabilities of people with disabilities during severe weather emergencies, where the loss of assistive devices and disconnection from support networks are heightened challenges. The session fostered interactive conversations, bringing forth the personal experiences and opinions of individuals with disabilities, underlining the necessity for inclusive solutions.

A significant focus emerged on implementing accessible devices during disasters, aiming to ensure that individuals with disabilities have the essential support and resources during critical times. Let’s continue these vital conversations and collectively work towards a more inclusive and resilient future!

Face to Face Meeting

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The Face to Face Meeting was hosted by the MSSI Chennai Chapter on August 5th, 2023, at the YWCA in Chennai.

Dr. Ravi Samuel guided the attendees through the topic of Lifestyle & Health, sharing insights.

Approximately 50 MS members and their caregivers gathered for a day centered on building connections and fostering bonds. Conversations flowed naturally, and new bonds were made.

In a heartwarming gesture, the group also celebrated the birthdays of members, filling the room with joy.

The gathering concluded with a high tea, allowing everyone to savor moments of camaraderie and reflection.

Impact of Lifestyle Factors on MS

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MSSI Chennai Chapter organized a “Face to Face Meeting” on July 1st, 2023, and it was an incredible success! The event focused on exploring the “Impact of Lifestyle Factors on MS”, presented by esteemed Nutritionist Ms. Hasna Arshia M.Sc., M.Phil., CDE (Certified Diabetes Educator), NET, SRF, (Ph.D.) Clinical nutrition, Award-winning Dietitian, Autoimmune diseases expert, specialized in endocrine diseases and infertility management, and Gut health nutritionist. What makes Ms. Hasna Arshia’s perspective, even more insightful, is that she herself is an MS Person.

It was thrilling to witness an enthusiastic participation of around 60 MS members and Caregivers, who actively engaged in the session. The meeting featured a dynamic and interactive discussion between Dr. Venkatraman, a Neurologist and specialist in MS, and Ms. Hasna Arshia, where they explored the advantages and disadvantages of adopting a healthy diet versus relying solely on medication.
As a delightful conclusion to the gathering, the birthdays of members were celebrated.

World MS Day 2023 – Chennai

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As night fell on 30 May which marks World MS Day, iconic landmarks across the globe came alive and bathed the city skies in an orange hue!
Chennai Chapter’s Campaign to turn Chennai and other Districts into the new ORANGE CITY by illuminating skylines in the signature colours of the WORLD MS movement was a success.
Important buildings in Tamil Nadu lit up in orange, showing their support for WMSD-2023

Eye Camp

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MSSI Chennai Chapter organised an Eye Camp on 29 April 2023. The camp was conducted by ‘Vision Spring’. A total of 60 members and caregivers participated in the event. Mrs Ann Gonsalvez, Secretary of the Chennai Chapter gave a brief introduction. Mr Sandeep Chitnis, National secretary and Mr Javed Hasan, Project Manager, MSSI also attended the camp. 60 members had their eyes checked and 40 members got their glasses on the spot. As part of the Eye Camp assessment, members played outdoor games to relax.

Occupational Therapy Meeting

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On Saturday, 25 March 2023, the Chennai Chapter conducted a session on Occupational Therapy in association with the Occupational Therapists from Ramachandra Medical College and Hospital, Porur, Chennai. The session was conducted as a part of the monthly ‘Face to Face Meeting’.

Protest Against Chennai Public Transport

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On 20 March 2023, about 60 members belonging to various disabled groups, including MSSI Chennai Chapter, came together to protest at the Rajaratnam Stadium, Egmore Chennai. It was to highlight the fact, that Chennai public transport is not disabled friendly. The buses pose a lot of inconvenience to disabled travellers.

Organization for Rare Disease in India (ORDI)

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ORDI (Organization for Rare Diseases in India) Race for 7 was held on 19 March 2023, at Island Ground, Chennai. The race was flagged off by Mr Meghanathan Reddy IAS, Secretary, Sports Development Authority, Government of Tamil Nadu, & Mrs Ann Gonsalvez, Ms Smitha Sadasivam from MSSI Chennai, Chapter.


Awareness Programme at MSSW COLLEGE

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On 17 February 2023, the Chennai Chapter organised an Awareness Programme at MSSW College. Mrs Ann Gonsalvez, Secretary of MSSI, Chennai Chapter, took a session on Multiple Sclerosis. The session was held to create awareness about the rare disease among the students of the Master of Social Work (Disability and Empowerment) Department from the Madras School of Social Work. The awareness session was a part of the community organisation programme conducted by the Postgraduate Social Work Students from Madras School of Social Work.

India MS Day Celebrations Chennai

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The India MS Day 2023 was held on 5 February 2023 at Anna Nagar Tower Park. Around 200 PwMS, caregivers & volunteers participated. The program started with a musical feast ‘Aagasam’ by the Vaazhvi team. It was a very enjoyable and refreshing evening for all. As the music played, members, PwMS, caregivers, volunteers and the general public gathered as a human chain.

The Chief Guest of the program was Mr. Gagandeep Singh Bedi, IAS, Commissioner, Greater Chennai Corporation and the Guest of Honors were Mr. K P Jain, Chairman, Zone 8, Greater Chennai Corporation, Mr. MK Mohan, MLA, Anna Nagar Constituency, and Mrs. Pushpalatha, Councilor, Ward 103, Greater Chennai Corporation.

We were delighted to have them at the event. The members and PwMS clicked pictures in kiosks and selfie booths. It was followed by high tea & the celebration came to a close with the beat of song & music by the Vaazhvi team.