The inspiring story of Lata Iyer, Gujarat's only licensed dyslexia therapist
Lata Iyer lost her husband in a train accident when her daughter, who has autism, was less than six years old. This did not discourage her from working towards giving a better life to her daughter, whom she has raised as a single parent.
An academic consultant, Iyer underwent training to raise her daughter. She is now using her learning to bring children with autism into the mainstream by establishing a centre in Vadodara.
The centre is called Reach-Centre for Autism and Special Needs and it was started four years ago in her home in Vadodara.
Iyer provides her services free of cost to children with special needs in the city. She is widely regarded as Gujarat's only licensed dyslexia therapist.
Iyer, who lived in Bengaluru when her daughter was diagnosed, had to travel to Mumbai for her daughter's treatment. After her husband’s insistence, she did a basic degree in special education.
When her husband was killed, Iyer moved to Vadodara where she started working as a teacher in special schools. She would also give voluntary remedial classes for special kids.
She had to take loans to do the expensive Dyslexia Therapist Training Programme in 2009. The course is conducted by the Maharashtra Dyslexia Association in partnership with the Multi Sensory Language Training Institute of New Mexico.
Her centre now has 14 children with autism, and she also helps children with special needs in mainstream schools.
Her next goal is to train teachers of municipal schools. Iyer says that even if she is able to train one teacher in each municipal school, it will go a long way in helping special kids.