Mrinalini Kulkarni (Committee Member, Bal Asha Trust)
adoption was possible because he was declared destitute after the process of
law was complete. He received help and counseling regarding adoptions from
social workers and psychologists. From the day Shyam came to Bal Asha Trust he
was told that he was here temporarily, that he would go to his parent’s home or
his adoptive parents. Read on to know more about success story of Shyam’s adoption.
This is the one of the most touching and amazing
life story of an older child called Shyam. Who was found on the Dadar railway
station by the railway police in December 2001.
As per the procedures he was brought before the Child Welfare Committee
and admitted to the Additional Observation Home, Mankhurd.
Efforts to trace his biological parents were made.
So also photo publication, telecasting his photograph on television as well as
a police search was made by the organisation to trace his next of kin or anyone
who had some information about him. But
this effort was in vain. So the
authorities declared him destitute and free for adoption in January 2003.
Shyam was transferred to Bal Asha Trust for
rehabilitation through adoption in February 2003.
Shyam was a normal child, of a calm and friendly
disposition. In the initial weeks
he was a little reserved but soon
adapted to his new environment. He
started going to school, playing with children and engaging in normal social
During this time the social workers at Bal Asha
Trust were assessing his progress, the psychologists prepared him for his new
life when he was ready to go for adoption.
They also tried to understand his preparedness to adjust in a new set up
especially within a family.
In this Shyam showed remarkable progress and
inclination towards having his own adopted family. In other words Shyam was as
much part of this and aware of the adoption
process as the social workers at Bal Asha.
Bal Asha Trust prepared all his documents and
started looking for the right family
for him. They got him registered with Adoption
Coordinating Agency at Mumbai which would help the Trust to see if there are
any families in Mumbai and Maharashtra
interested in adopting
an older child. A lot of time passed
by, but no family came forward.
Finally in January our Trustee Ms. Madhavi
Karandikar received a call from Mr. Purohit from another town but that agency
suggested that he was too old to adopt an infant. This is a fact but what the
agency did not suggest was that he could adopt an older child and find out if
he was interested in doing so.
Earlier Mr. Purohit had approached the agency and
informed them that he would like to adopt. The Agency referred them to Bal Asha
Trust in, Mumbai. Noting the age of the parents Mrs. Karandikar explained to
him why it was important for him to adopt an older child as it is necessary to
have a gap of about 38-40 years between the child and the adoptive parents. Mr.
Purohit realized the importance of this and told her that he was
agreeable. Mrs. Karandikar told Mr. Purohit
to contact her office and he would get the required help and information. She
also told him that a lot of patience was required to adopt an older child.
On contacting Bal Asha Trust, Mr. Purohit was asked
to come to the office along with his wife. He met Mr. Sunil Arora the Trust’s
Administrator The couple came across as very polite and simple and seemed well-prepared
to receive an older child. After meeting
the couple, the team at Bal Asha Trust felt that this was the right family for
submitting all relevant documents, a home study was scheduled at their home. The social worker was surprised to be greeted
by neighbours of the family. The
neighbours introduced themselves to the social worker and assured him that if
the child is placed with the family, he will be well looked after not only
within the family, but also will be loved by the members of the society. They were proud that the Purohits decided to
build their family through adoption.
The social worker then shared and imparted some
simple ways of parenting
which would make the bonding between the adopted child and family strong. The couple listened carefully and expressed
their doubts and discussed their thoughts frankly with the social worker.
The fact that Shyam was nearly 12 years old and
studying in 3rd Std in a Municipal
School was told to the
Purohits. The social worker and psychologist also discussed with Purohits that
the child would not be as bright and like other children of his age in academic
performance but would do well as a moral child is school. The Purohits told the
social worker that they did not have unrealistic expectations from Shyam that
he would become a doctor or an IIM Graduate. They wanted him to graduate or
even if he did not, they would prepare him to handle their lath workshop and
train him to earn his living and be independent. They had a modest home and
good family friends and that Shyam would grow up in healthy settings. They were
very receptive and understanding towards Shyam’s situation and had a realistic
outlook and attitude towards the future with the child.
The social worker and psychologist found this
attitude very healthy and realized the family was well-prepared to adopt an
older child. They had patience and understanding and emotional stability.
Soon Shyam was introduced to the couple. Within minutes he overcame his initial
shyness and within hours they were playing and laughing as if they had known
each other for many years. This was really happy moment for all of us!
The couple came everyday for the next 10 days and
spent the whole day with Shyam. With every passing day the bonding grew
stronger. The couple took him out for short hours and when Shyam returned he
would be beaming! We still recall the
day when his adoptive father brought him the family album and he just could not
stop flaunting it very proudly.
One day we asked the Purohits not to come to meet
Shyam. We wanted to observe the reaction
of the child and the parents. During
the day Shyam kept on asking why his papa and mummy had not come. On the other
hand, the Purohits kept on calling the office imploring us if they could at
least come for 15 minutes. From both their reactions we were convinced that
these were the right parents for Shyam.
After further processing of documents and signing
the petition was over, the day came when Shyam had to go to his home. Shyam was full of excitement and had eagerly
packed all his favourite things, his bags, school books, drawings and
toys. The family performed a small Pooja
in Bal Asha, a ritual when a child finds a home. He bid farewell to all. One thing was very obvious that Shyam was
very much part of the adoption process and it seemed so natural that he was
keen and well prepared to face the future with his new parents.
the couple to call once they reached home.
Soon we received a call at 9.45 in the night. When we asked if we could talk to Shyam, his
father said as soon as they reached home all the young children in the society
were overjoyed and surrounded him. They crowded the room and after initial
introduction took him out to play. It
all seemed so natural and wonderful! We
knew for sure Shyam had found the right home, new friends and a new LIFE!