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Epilepsy Matrimonial Meet

A report on the matrimonial meet held on 11th May 2008

Yashoda Wakankar, founder and managing trustee, sanvedana foundation Yashoda Wakankar, founder and managing trustee, sanvedana foundation
We feel we are on the right path when we hear Dr. Divate, senior neurologist, remark: “How times have changed! I am so happy to see a banner on a busy main road of Pune, mentioning a matrimonial meet especially for those afflicted by epilepsy. Earlier there used to be stigma associated with epilepsy but now I have been invited to preside over a matrimonial meet for those coping with Epilepsy”. Sanvedana was formed to share experience strength and hope with those suffering from epilepsy. We strive towards being productive members of society, leading normal lives and coping with the vagaries of life, which any person would face. In our case, the issue is coping with epilepsy!

One step to actualize our vision was to help people like us find life partners. The credit for this step belongs to Mr. Mohan Pathak, one of our members, who is a caring parent of an epileptic child. We are grateful for the support that the print media extended. Regular articles on our issues and specific articles on our matrimonial meet helped generate interest in over 100 people from all over Maharashtra.

Dr. Anil Awachat Dr. Anil Awachat
Wanting to give a platform to prospective brides and grooms to get to know each other, we organised a ‘Vadhu Var Melava’ (matrimonial meet). This probably was the first of its kind for people afflicted by epilepsy. The meet was organised at the Apte Sabhagruh, Deccan Gymkhana Pune from 9 am till 2 pm. Eventually 21 brides and 28 grooms participated in the event. Most of them came with their parents. Well known neurologist Dr. Pradeep Divate was the chief guest and well known writer and social worker Dr. Anil Awachat was invited to speak at the function. Both of them lauded Sanvedana’s efforts and reaffirmed our faith in the path we were on. Dr. Divate spoke about aspects of marital life in respect to epilepsy. He advised the prospective brides and grooms to consult neurologists to know more about their partner’s epilepsy.

Dr. Pradeep Divate Dr. Pradeep Divate
Dr. Anil Awachat said that when we think of marriage, we generally consider the income, a person’s skin color, height, his/her appearance etc, but actually first we have to think about his/her humanity, and whether wavelengths match. It is absolutely possible that a ‘Normal couple’ (read non epileptic) could give birth to a child with epilepsy.

The participants appreciated the expert inputs from these eminent people. The introductory session was followed by a tea break and then the process of introductions began. These youngsters were from different backgrounds. Many of them were well educated and some of them made up for their lack in formal qualification by being self employed. In fact girls were more educated and confident than the boys! After finishing this introduction session, the prospective brides and grooms were allowed an hour’s interaction. We were happy to learn that 5 of the ‘Couples’ are interested in taking this forward and we hope to see them settled together.

Participants Participants
We have suggested to all of them to start attending Sanvedana’s group meetings, visiting the counselling centre and participating in our activities. At the end of the event, we left with a feeling of having made a beginning and of having achieved our objectives. Sanvedana Foundation, a Non Profit organization, has started on 22nd of February, 2004 with the objective of supporting & counseling epilepsy patients. Sanvedana Foundation has got 80G approval which is valid up to 31st March 2009.

Yashoda Wakankar
Founder and Managing Trustee

Sanvedana Foundation:
Cell Phone: +91 9822008035 or +91 9850887644