“How can we expect positive change from the man you call “autistic”?”. Natalia Vodianova about your Fund, profession models and strong women
In early October, the save the children Fund “Naked heart” of the model and philanthropist Natalia Vodianova held the annual Moscow forum “Every child deserves a family”.
From 2012 on this site Russian and foreign experts discuss issues in working with children with special needs and their integration into society. In recent years, Vodianova is rarely in Russia, almost all of its travel related activities of the Fund. The journalist of “Medusa,” Alexander Sulima asked Natalia Vodianova, do the people of Russia are more tolerant of these children, whether it considers itself a feminist and as relates to age.
As a team Foundation “Naked heart” decides which child to help, and what — no?
— We work in different cities. In our family support centre and early intervention centre, which is located in Nizhniy Novgorod (Vodianova was born in Gorky, now — Nizhny Novgorod — approx. “Medusa”), is always a huge queue, infinite. If our center the child attended school or kindergarten, we can rent his place to someone else.
We try to help as many children, and some clear criterion of social stratification, for example — we have, it all depends on our resources.
We work even with the most difficult children, those who never take someone called “unteachable” is, you can tell, our specialty. But we understand that, despite the high demand, you can not sacrifice the quality and service that we provide to families should be available to them within walking distance. That is why we started to work in kindergartens and schools.
— What has changed in Russia over the six years that your Foundation helps children with special needs?
— Changes have been tremendous. Even our parents see that their children in our country were very different attitude to children’s play areas, and public places, and supermarkets.
More and more people know what autism is something new for our country the concept, diagnosis is only 18 years old.
Over the past few years, there have been some organizations that are separate disabilities, spetsializiruyutsya on helping people with down syndrome or focused on autism spectrum disorders. Now people are not afraid to take on this topic, it is often said in the media.
When we started six years ago and held the first round table, we all said, “We respect what you do, but it’s not going to sell our Newspapers and magazines. This one will never speak.”
Today, you could say it has become a hot topic, many journalists in their materials already possess the correct words and our terminology.
Two years ago, the Hello magazine came with the cover where I was with my sister Oksana (the younger sister Natalia Vodianova autism Oksana — approx. “Jellyfish”) — early and present this was impossible.
By the way, about the right words. Most people don’t think about what to name the child with autism “autistic” is wrong, because autism does not define him as a person. First and foremost, this man and his diagnosis is secondary. Even some of the parents of these kids use that word — even, sometimes, say “authenic,” but they don’t understand that as you have a ship call, so it will float.
How can we expect any positive changes from the man you call “autistic”?
It works on a subconscious level: the child must not feel apart from society, we all have some peculiarities, it is important to remember.
— Do you often communicate with families, which helps Fund “Naked heart”. Tell us about those with whom you managed to talk over the last year.
Such stories, on the one hand, many, and each of them is very important to us. On the other hand, children who live in households that are much less than those who live in boarding schools. We do not even imagine how families would have been higher if we were talking about a normal country where society accepts the fact that occasionally people are born with.
Recently, the Deputy of the state Duma from LDPR Igor Lebedev said that women should have abortions if they find out they’re expecting a child with special needs, and on the First channel not only sounded, but also gave the word “expert”, who said that children with special needs are born only the mother is an alcoholic. It is not just nonsense, it is dangerous nonsense! It seems to me that the normal educated man can’t tell. I don’t even know how to treat this; I want this man carried for such words to those words resulted in some consequences to channel at least apologized.
How can you say such offensive things on the main channel of the country, knowing that the world is one of 68 children born with autism?
And here, add down syndrome, cerebral palsy. As we can is to close your eyes? We must not turn a blind eye.