Art therapy training for the teachers of DSSN’s day care centre in Kathmandu.

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Art therapy training for the teachers of DSSN’s day care centre in Kathmandu.


To train in art therapy “special” teachers working with children and young adults with Down Syndrome or intellectual disability. DSSN has a team of 4 teachers in their day care centre in Kathmandu and has 15 day care centre partners all over Nepal that DSSN helps to start.

The members and founders of the organization and some of the teachers are the parents of the beneficiaries of the centres. They are doing their best to give maximum support to their children and help them to develop as much as possible their capacity.

They believe that art therapy can play an important role to develop and enhance the cognitive capacities of children with intellectual disability. At the moment two Nepali volunteers, acting as extras to the teachers, carry music and dance activities with the children and youths but they don’t have any idea to manage it in a therapeutic way.

The teachers and/or parents involved in the center do not know either about art therapy. That is why a training in art therapy, in a very simple and practical way, will help them to understand the concept of art therapy, what can and will be the benefit for the children and youths of the centres, how to carry different activities in a therapeutic way and how to adapt the current activities as well.

Really often people in Nepal think that art therapy is to carry recreational activities but do not know to conduct these activities in a therapeutic way. For all these reasons, DSSN is requesting a training in art therapy from Planète Urgence’s volunteer(s). DSSN also does not have the required funds to attend this kind of training.

Intervention attendue du volontaire

This training in art therapy will be organised for the 4 “special” teachers of Satyam centre in Kathmandu, the principal and the director of DSSN. Some of them are parents of the children. Prior to the Planète Urgence volunteer(s)’ intervention, DSSN will also consider the possibility for some of its board members and staffs from partner day-care centres to join the training. This possibility will be discussed along with the volunteer(s) to determine the most efficient schedule and number of participants accordingly. The majority of the participants will be women. For possible participants from the partner day-care centres located outside of Kathmandu valley (10 out of 15), Satyam Day Care Center will arrange for the accommodation and the meals in the centre.

DSSN suggests that the intervention of the volunteer is divided daily into two different sessions:
- One theoretical session including general presentation of art therapy, concepts of art therapy, artistic approaches in therapy to develop creative potential, methodology to manage activities, interpretation.
- One practical session with the children of Satyam day care centre through the organization of different activities like theater, tales, clown, fine arts, voice activities, dance, masks, etc. Several missions may be required for the staff to acquire all the necessary skills.

After the mission(s) DSSN is expecting the following results: For the participants : All the participants wish to take part to the training to learn about the concept of art therapy and learn to manage artistic activities in a therapeutic way, which will help the children and youths to develop their capacity. After the training(s), the teachers and board members of the day care centres will know about the concept of art therapy and will have a clearest idea about the benefits of art therapy for children with disabilities.

They will feel more comfortable and will be able to manage art activities with the children and youths in a therapeutic way. The participants might use these new skills at home with their children as well, and share them with other parents or teachers of partner day-care centres. In the long term DSSN hopes to see evolutions in the behaviour of the children and youths.

For the organization DSSN hopes to improve the support they give to the children and youths. As DSSN is working as well on the concept of inclusive education, it hopes that after the training its teachers will also be able to train other teachers from ”normal” school around the centre on art therapy, which might be really useful for the children of these schools, who have personal issues as well. DSSN is thinking to organize inclusive activities in art therapy with neighbouring schools.


DSSN is looking for volunteer(s) with a degree in art therapy and with experience in managing group/individual art activities.

The mission can happen anytime expect during national holidays: Dashain and Tihar (weeks 40 and 43). All daily transportation can be done by walking (15 to 20 minutes) or by taxi. The volunteer will work from 10am to 5pm from Monday to Friday. He/she can work on Sunday as well, which is a working day in Nepal. The volunteer can have lunch in the centre. Breakfasts and dinners will be taken outside in restaurants.

Type de bénéficiaires

4 teachers + principal + director of DSSN.

Profil des bénéficiaires

Minimum 6 : 4 teachers + principal + director of DSSN. To be determined with the volunteer: 1 or 2 staffs of partner day-care centres (around 10/15 centres) + some board members.
Just few of them speak and understand English, an interpreter will help, either among the staff, or hired externally.None of the participants have received a training in art therapy.

Dispositif(s) possible(s)

Congé Solidaire;Mission Solidaire

Notre partenaire local

Down Syndrome Society Nepal (DSSN)


Down Syndrome Society Nepal is an NGO created in 2010 by Shila Thapa and 8 other parents of intellectual disabled children. DSSN protects and promotes the basic human rights of the intellectually disabled children.

Despite how relatively common Down syndrome is, in Nepal it is not understood as a chromosomal disorder. Nepalese doctors and nurses are often not well informed and lack basic understanding of the symptoms; leading to tragic misdiagnosis. Often children are not properly diagnosed and never treated as they should be. As Down syndrome is associated with many serious physical problems (heart defects, poor eyesight, etc.) that demand urgent care, the lives of many Down’s children are simply lost without access to relevant medical practitioners and counsellors.

Shila Thapa, the founder of the organization, lost her brother to meningitis at age six as her mother was not educated enough to react in the right way. That was a powerful lesson to Shila: mothers need education and access to care for their children.
In 2002, Shila gave birth to her second child. After a lengthy struggle and multiple consultations with doctors, her son was diagnosed with Down Syndrome and a heart condition.
Following this and due to lack of treatment in Nepal, Shila had to go to India in order for her son to undergo operations for his survival. This allowed her to learn more about the condition and Down syndrome’s support groups in India.

Back in Nepal, Shila had to train herself in physiotherapy to be able to answer to her child’s need and this led her to open a clinic to support other children with Down Syndrome.
In 2005, she founded the Down Syndrome Support Centre—the first in Nepal, now called Satyam Day Care Centre (SDDC).
Thanks to her mother-in-law’s support, Shila was able to cater to her sons need and to other needy children with Down Syndrome, whose parents cannot afford treatment. And so, in 2010 she started Down Syndrome Society Nepal with the help of other parents, especially of mothers.

Since 2005, in a country where a word for Down syndrome does not exist, Shila has reached out to parents, the medical community, the government and a network of citizen organizations (COs) working with disability, to make children with Down Syndrome and their parents a vibrant, empowered community with the resources and education to improve the lives of their children and influence Nepalese society.

Shila has employed a two-pronged institutional strategy by operating a support centre and day care centre, as well as partnering with other disability groups and lobbying the government of Nepal.

The support centre is responsible for sensitization programs on Down syndrome amongst parents, medical practitioners, medical institutions, educational institutes, and the government. Shila informs professionals and the general public that Down syndrome is not a disease but a genetic condition.

In Nepal, children with Down syndrome are viewed as retarded, dangerous, and even “mad” and their mothers are often discriminated against and ostracized. Through programs organized by the centre, Shila is creating spaces where children with Down syndrome and “normal” children interact and learn from each other. She encourages families and society to celebrate these children and their talents. She does not force activities, but develops their natural talents.

The centre organizes public programs as a mean to raise funds while increasing awareness and also includes celebrities and lawmakers in her awareness programs. In-kind support is provided by volunteers who offer many therapies to the children while large organizations contribute with equipment, books, donation boxes and business-plan consulting to Shila.

The support centre also runs a vocational training program for children over twelve-years-old to enable them to become economically productive members of society.
Named Prothshaan, this program focuses overall on enhancing the lives of people with Down syndrome and people with intellectual disability, providing quality instruction and meaningful work.

The centre provides Physiotherapy, an Early Stimulation Program, Occupational Therapy, Speech Therapy and routine vaccinations to the children. The centre also provides classes, music and dance therapy, exercise, and other services to Down’s children.

Currently, Satyam day care centre supports 15 children or young adults with Down Syndrome or intellectual disabilities and touches around 250 families via 15 partner day care centres.

The current Satyam Day Care Centre services are:
- Special education: education of the children in adapted way for each one.
- Medical general check-up and support for special medical needs.
- Speech therapy done by Shila as she has attended a workshop in Singapore.
- Dance therapy done by a Nepali volunteer twice a week.
- Music therapy done by a Nepali volunteer once a week.
- Occupational therapy: day to day activities which means life skill, daily routine activities.
- Physiotherapy done by Shila who follow a course for a year.
- Self Help Skills: division among the children of daily work as cleaning, cooking, washing clothes.
- Early intervention: detection of Down syndrome and activity with young children (sensation of cold/hot, texture, noises…).
- Physical Training and Sports.
- Educational tours: recreational activities out of the centre one Friday a month to claim the “Right to go out” (cinema, park…).

12 persons are working in the centre: the director (Shila Thapa), the principal of the centre, 4 teachers, 1 supervisor, 1 administration officer, 1 driver, 1 cooker, 1 kitchen assistant and 1 office boy.

3 teachers have received a teacher training from the Japanese Cooperation but not specifically in special education.
A new teacher has been hired from end of March 2014. She has received training in early childhood stimulation and on how to develop activities for children with various disabilities.
The principal of the school also acts in the education program and has received a Montessori training.

The 15 children coming daily to the center are from 4 to 25 years old :3 have 24 and 25 years old, 3 have between 14 to 16 years old. The rest of them are from 4 to 12 years old.

Accueil et transfert

Shila Thapa will pick up the volunteer at the airport in a private car. It will take approximately 30-40 minutes to accommodation, depending on traffic.

Aéroport d'arrivée

Kathmandu [Tribhuvan]


The Planète Urgence volunteer(s) will stay at a guesthouse in an individual room with private bathroom, electricity and free wifi. The guesthouse will be located in the touristic area of Kathmandu, Thamel.

Matériel disponible sur place

The Planète Urgence volunteer(s) will work at the DSSN day-care centre in Baluwatar, Kathmandu. DSSN has an office with 1 desk and 1 computer with the Internet. DSSN does not have an electricity back-up. Electricity short-cuts vary depending on the time of the year. There is a paper board. Music instruments are also available: drum set, guitar, keyboard, Mouth Organ, Nepali instrument Harmonium, Madal and Sarangi. As well as games: Badminton, Basket ball, Shot-put, Carom board and puzzles. There are only limited art materials. All this material can be used by the volunteer(s) during the mission.

Le financement d’une mission

Pourquoi payer pour partir en mission ?

Planète Urgence a fait le choix de s’associer à de petites structures, qui n’ont pas les moyens de rémunérer leurs volontaires mais qui ont un réel besoin d’appui et prend donc le parti de soutenir des associations aux moyens très limités.  En savoir plus.


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Par ailleurs, il n’existe pas de financements publics ou institutionnels pour encourager le développement du volontariat international de courte durée sur le thème de la formation professionnelle ou du partage de compétences. C’est pourquoi Planète Urgence demande aux entreprises dans le cadre du Congé Solidaire® et aux volontaires pour les Missions Solidaires de participer aux frais de la mission.


Notre Principe de solidarité

Le don mission ne correspond pas au montant réel du coût de la mission choisie par le volontaire mais a été calculé sur la base du coût moyen de nos missions. Nous avons fait ce choix pour ne pas favoriser certaines missions moins coûteuses que d’autres et permettre ainsi à tous nos partenaires de recevoir de manière équitable des volontaires intéressés par leurs actions.


Sur le même principe, le financement des offres de volontariat repose lui aussi sur ce concept solidaire : pour une même mission de 2 semaines, le don mission du Congé Solidaire® est plus élevé que celui d’une Mission Solidaire. Le coût des missions résulte en effet d’un équilibre entre ces deux sources de financement permettant ainsi aux personnes ne bénéficiant pas du soutien de leur employeur de partir en mission.


Le don ne comprend pas :
– le billet d’avion (dans le cadre d’un Congé Solidaire®, certains employeurs peuvent assumer également le coût)
– les vaccins éventuels,
– le visa éventuel

Tout comme le don mission, ces frais peuvent donner lieu à une défiscalisation.

Les dons de missions, défiscalisable à 66%

Tous les dons de missions ouvrent droit 66% de défiscalisation. Les dons sont déduits du montant de l’impôt sur le revenu à hauteur de 66% pour les particuliers. Ainsi, par exemple, un don de 1 850 € après défiscalisation, reviendra à 629 € pour un particulier. . Les frais entourant la mission sont aussi éligibles à la défiscalisation. En savoir plus

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Je postule

Je postule


Partenaire : Down Syndrome Society Nepal (DSSN)

Népal, Kathmandu

GPS : lat 27.7172453
lon 85.3239605

Langues :



Thématique : Santé

Type d'intervention :

Compétences : Art et culture

Nombre attendu de volontaire(s) sur la mission : 1

Durée : 2 semaines

Dates :

📅 31-12-2017 au 30-12-2018

📅 01-01-2019 au 31-12-2019