Samman Association

We had 3 successful consecutive epilepsy awareness programmes:

29th September – Al Barkat Malik School, Kurla where the speakers were Neurologist Dr. Amit Vatkar and Pooja Nandi on behalf of Samman Association. There were 80 teachers in attendance.

30th September – Fortis Hiranandani Hospital, Vashi – Speakers: Neurologists Dr. Neeraj Jain spoke on Epilepsy in general and dos and don’ts; Dr. Pawan  Ojha spoke on Epilepsy and Women and Carol D’Souza spoke on Living Confidently with Epilepsy.  Pooja Nandi compered the session.

1st October – YMCA Ghatkopar – Once again Dr. Amit Vatkar volunteered to conduct this session.  We are very grateful for his support.img_20160930_155254775

The Dean of Fortis Hiranandani Hospital, Vashi  presenting certificates to Pooja & Carol

The Dean of Fortis Hiranandani Hospital, Vashi presenting certificates to Pooja & Carol

Yesterday Samman Association conducted another school teacher awareness program.  Pediatric neurologist Dr. Pradnya Gadgil and Clinical Psychologist Ms. Dhara Bangera spoke to the very interested audience.  This ongoing initiative which seeks to educate teachers on myths and misconceptions surrounding epilepsy, the difficulties a child having epilepsy might face, seizure first aid and inclusive education has been very successful.   Thank you docs! And thanks to Kanchan Gupta and Pooja Nandi for arranging the programs.

Carol D’Souza

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At least twice a month Samman Association conducts a Teacher Awareness Program. Today one was held at Children’s Academy School at Malad East. Dr. Jayanti Mani spoke to approximately 100 teachers in two batches. As usual there were a lot of questions about epilepsy. We were very happy by the interest shown by the school staff and are thankful to the Principal for giving us this opportunity.

Carol DSouza

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August 2016 has been a very fruitful month.  We had a very successful epilepsy clinic at Palghar on the 28th, a good epilepsy education patient program at Jupiter Hospital at Thane on the 27th, an epilepsy awareness talk for the teachers at YMCA Vocational Training Center Andheri on 25th and a teacher education program at Don Bosco NIOS school Borivali on 5th August.  We also held our AGM on 30th August.

Approximately 60 patients came to the 2nd clinic that we have organized in Palghar, out of which 40 had epilepsy.  Neurologists Dr. Pravina Shah and Dr. Dhara Shah, General Physician Dr. Wagle, Physiotherapist Shabnam Rangwala  and Samman members volunteered at the Clinic.  Shabnam graciously gave us her place from where we could conduct the clinic and sponsored a free lunch for everyone who attended the same.  This large turnout was due to the collaborative efforts put in by NHRM, Shabnam Rangwala and Samman Association and has encouraged us to continue with our efforts there.  During National Epilepsy Month we plan to have an epilepsy education program for doctors and health workers there.  The next clinic is scheduled for 20th November.

Our Teacher education and hospital programs are proceeding well thanks to Dr. Pradnya Gadgil, Dr. Jayanti Mani, Kanchan Gupta and Pooja Nandi.   The interest shown by teachers and doctors has been heartening.



Date Program Venue Time
5th – 6th March Exhibition & Awareness Ghatkopar Metro Station 9:00am – 9:00pm
11th March School Awareness Rajhans, Andheri 1:00pm – 2:00pm
17th March School Awareness KVM Mankhurd 1:00 pm – 2:00pm
26th March Support Group Meeting Hiranandani Hospital Powai 3:00pm – 4:00pm
31st March School Awareness St.Annes High School 1:00 pm – 2:00pm
12th April School Awareness JB Vaccha Matunga 1:00 pm – 2:00pm
17th April Medical Camp Pen 9:00 am – 12 noon
23rd April Samman Inauguration Samman Office 2:00pm – 5:00pm
5th June Isha Yoga Program ADAPT Centre 4:00pm – 6:00pm
19th June Rural Medical Clinic Plaghar 9:00 am – 12 noon
25th June Support Group Meeting Bhakti Vedanta Hosp – Mira Road 1:00pm – 3:00pm
17th July Rural Medical Clinic Pen 9:00 am – 12 noon
28th Aug Rural Medical Clinic Palghar 9:00 am – 12 noon


Yesterday Samman Association & Isha Foundation conducted the Upa Yoga program which 19 people attended. Upa Yoga consists of sets of 5 minute exercises aimed to give you Health, Joy, Peace, Love, Success and more.  The sets do not need to be done together at a stretch and can be done singly or in combination at any time and at any place.  They are simple stretching, breathing and chanting exercises. Daily practice will lead to immense benefits. The International Day of Yoga is approaching. Take the lead – be the first to do yoga in your home and encourage other family members to follow!


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The International Day of Yoga is approaching ……..

To celebrate the event SAMMAN ASSOCIATION in partnership with ISHA FOUNDATION is giving you the opportunity to attend

a complimentary Yoga session on Sunday 5th June 2016 from 4-6pm

 at ADAPT, Center for Inclusion & Research

(formerly Spastic Society of India),

KC Marg, Bandra Reclamation, Bandra West, Mumbai 400050

(in front of Hotel Rang Sharda and near Lilavati Hospital).

You will be taught simple Upa Yoga practices which have numerous benefits:

  • Relieves physical stress and tiredness.
  • Strengthens the joints and muscles.
  • Rejuvenates the body after periods of inactivity.
  • Negates the effects of jetlag and long travel.

The practices taught do not require any prior knowledge or experience of yoga or meditation & does not require any empty stomach condition

(preferably light stomach).

Participants can learn these practices in one session and then practice these at home regularly.

Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev the founder of Isha, is a Yogi, mystic, visionary and poet who believes that yoga is not an esoteric discipline from an outdated past, but a contemporary science, vitally relevant to our times.

Samman Association (formerly known as Indian Epilepsy Association, Bombay Chapter) dedicates itself to empowering people with epilepsy.


The first 4 months of the year are over!  Gone so quickly!  At Samman, we have been busy.  Given below is a short update of our activities from Jan-April.

School Awareness Programs:

One of our main goals is to raise epilepsy awareness in order to educate people about first aid for seizures and stop discrimination against people who have epilepsy.  If we educate teachers how to appropriately take care of the child with epilepsy, their attitude of acceptance would transfer to rest of the children in the classroom.  Dr. Pradnya Gadgil & Dr. Jayanti Mani along with Pooja Nandi have been going to various schools to educate teachers.  I thank Kanchan Gupta for calling up the various schools and scheduling these meetings.  A task that requires much persistence. I also thank Ketki for arranging the BMC program in Kalyan.  Education of school teachers was conducted on the following dates.

16th Jan –  Kalyan – Epilepsy education conducted for teachers from various BMC schools. Totally 50 teachers attended this program

30th Jan – Kendriya Vidyalaya Mandir, Malad

2nd Feb – St. Xaviers, Vie Parle

11th Feb – Kendriya Vidyalaya Mandir, Powai

11th March – Rajhans Vidyalaya, Andheri

17th March – Kendriya Vidyalaya Mandir, Mankhurd

31st March – St. Anne’s High School, Malad

Additionally we did one awareness program at the Andheri Metro Station on 9th Feb’16 where we had skits performed throughout the day depicting the need for acceptance of people with epilepsy (see photos below).  Information material was given to the people passing through the station.  We thank Christopher Fernandes who was instrumental in making this happen.

Support Group Meetings

After we had to leave ECell at Nana Chowk, we have had no place to conduct these meetings.  We then started having epilepsy education programs at various hospitals.  The doctors at these hospitals have been very cooperative and have chosen to talk on various topics of interest to people with epilepsy and their caregivers.  We plan to continue with these hospital meetings every 4th Saturday of the month – generally from 2.30 to 4.30 pm.  Meetings have been conducted at the following places:

23rd January –  Holy Spirit Hospital, Andheri

27th February – KEM Hospital, Parel

26th March – Hiranandani Hospital, Powai

23rd April – We had the meeting at our new Samman Office (see earlier post).\

Exhibition cum Sale

Our members who make various products like photo frames, jewellery, crochet articles etc. have an opportunity to sell these at exhibition cum sales.  Many of these are specially held for NGOs where tables are given free of charge. It also gives us an opportunity to create epilepsy awareness.  We took part in the following programs:

2nd – 5th Feb – At Government Law College, Churchgate

5th – 6th March – At Ghatkopar Metro Station

Christopher Fernandes got the permissions and set up the above programs.

Rural Epilepsy Clinic

24th January –  97 patients came to the clinic. They were attended to by Neurologists: Dr. Pravina Shah, Dr. Joy Desai, General Physician: Dr. Wagle, Physiotherapist: Dr. Dhruv and  Samman volunteers who helped in the smooth operation of the clinic.

17th April – 93 patients came to the Clinic.  This time there were 3 Neurologists: Dr. Pravina Shah, Dr. Joy Desai & Dr. Jayanti Mani, 2 Physiotherapists: Dr. Dhruv & Shabnam, along with Dr. Wagle who attended to patients. Many thanks to the Samman members who were responsible for the efficient running of the clinic – distributing medicines and files and maintaining order.

We thank Ashokbhai Parekh for the infrastructure and hospitality provided to us and to the patients and we thank Nareshbhai the Caretaker, and the various cooks whose delicious food sustains us well!

Carol D’Souza

On Saturday, 23rd April, 2016, we had the inauguration of our new SAMMAN ASSOCIATION office which is on the first floor of ADAPT at KC Marg, Bandra Reclamation, Mumbai 50. We began with games conducted by Mr. Sunil Ullal, a theater person and VJTI alumni.  Dr. Pravina Shah was very happy to welcome all to this new place.  For a year we had no fixed office and members were once again very happy they had a place where programs can be conducted and where they would be able to meet.   Sharvari Mulay made lovely cards (as you will see in the pics) for Dr. Shah and Samman and Keyur recited a meaningful poem he had written.  As usual none of our programs can end without sumptuous food! People who attended for the first time were impressed with the huge attendance and the great vibe – an atmosphere we are sure will continue!

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Samman Association continues to raise epilepsy awareness amongst school teachers. A week ago Dr. Jayanti Mani and Pooja Mehta Nandi went t0 St.Annes school in Malad and spoke to teachers. And before the close of this Academic year, Dr. Pradnya Gadgil and Pooja will be going to the following schools: 1st April – St. Annes , Malad (12 – 1pm).

11th April – St.Annes , Malad (1 – 2pm)

13th April – J.B .Vacha – Dadar (1-2pm)

16th April – KVM – Kanjurmarg (1-2pm)

On 17th April we will be having another epilepsy clinic in Pen and on 23rd April we will have the inauguration of our new Samman Office (Timing To be confirmed).

image image image imageToday we are having a wonderful awareness program at the Andheri Metro Station. Awareness skits are being performed through the day and Samman members are handing bookmarks and calendar cards to the public. These give information about first aid for seizures and our Association contact details. Great work by our members and the Samman working committee. And a big thanks to Reliance for giving us permission. Carol

Congratulations to Drs. Jayanti Mani and Pradnya Gadgil for hosting an excellent support group meeting at the Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital, Andheri.  Dr. Mani welcomed the gathering and spoke of its purpose and agenda.  She then invited Psychiatrist Dr. Shaunak Ajinkya to talk on Psychiatric Disorders in Epilepsy.  He began by telling us that psychiatric disorders could be illness related, medication related or stigma related.  The talk was interesting and many people in the audience could identify with what was being spoken.  Pediatric Neurologist Dr. Pradnya Gadgil then spoke about problems children with epilepsy face in school, as well as the problems faced by their parents. Neurologist Dr. Jayanti Mani then told us that in the clinic the doctors have very little time to delve into the psycho-social problems faced by people with epilepsy and asked the audience to share about problems faced at work or problems faced getting employment.  The spontaneous participation from many in the audience and the desire to share their experiences is what made this well attended support group meeting special.

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On 27th June we had our meeting at Nair hospital and were very pleased with the attendance of 30 people. Neurologist Dr. Rahul Chakor spoke to the audience about epilepsy emphasizing the Dos and Don’ts. He was followed by Dr. Harish Bharote who lectured on the myths in pregnancy and epilepsy and appropriate lifestyle changes during this period. Christopher Fernandes then spoke about the activities of the IEA Bombay Chapter. Lastly Nola spoke about Dr. Pravina Shah and her role in nurturing Samman the epilepsy support group and its activities. A Q&A session followed with Sharvari and Ashwini talking about how they have coped with their epilepsy. This interactive session was appreciated by all. Snacks and tea ended this session of support and learning.


Indian Epilepsy Association is taking part in this Exhibition cum Sale organized by the Indus Festival of charities today. We have taken part for many years now and it has always been well organized and enjoyable.


Christopher is a Real Live Example for All of Us & a True Idol of Our Entire Samman Group. Heartiest Congratulations Christopher. Keep It Up.” These were the sentiments expressed by Keyur on the ECell Whatsapp group and echoed by many others. Christopher organized 3 epilepsy awareness camps : the first on Tuesday 18th November at Siddhivinayak Temple, Prabhadevi, this was followed by a program at the Mumbai Metro, Ghatkopar on Thursday 20th and the third one was held at Haji Ali on Friday 21st. We were given a table to display our material and our members: Ashish, Kalpesh, Kavita, Manohar, Ignatius Misquitta, Nola Shah, Yogita Lad, Gia Lad distributed calendar cards and educated people about epilepsy. On 17th Nov, Kavita tweeted Krutika’s slogan “National Epilepsy Day – Don’t be scared, Let’s Care” which was retweeted by others.

We are also proud of Shenaz who was felicitated at Shree Chitra, Trivandrum, on 17th November, for winning the Outstanding Person with Epilepsy Award and Keyur who won the runners up prize for the Badminton tournament organized by Epilepsy Foundation. Congratulations to both of them.

Every 2nd Saturday / Sunday we have started excursion trips.  Last Sunday we went to Borivli National Park and Kanheri Caves.  See the pictures🙂

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The meeting started with prayerful silence for the late Dr. Manubhai Kothari, Sarah Sharma and Mandar Kadam. Dr. Pravina Shah then spoke about the Diwali festival. This was followed with a Diwali quiz and party games and snacks which was well organized by Mr. & Mrs. Alate.

Our organization has taken part in 3 Exhibition cum sales recently – at St. Joseph’s Convent Monsoon Mela on 28th September, Bhavans College Andheri

(26th & 27th Sept), Bank of Baroda ‘Shakti Anand Mela’ on 13th October at their Bandra Kurla Complex Corporate Center. Christopher has been instrumental in the participation at these exhibitions cum sales.  Thanks also to Manisha Thosar sponsored the stall at Bhavans College.

We hope to see all of you at our AGM on 5th Nov at 4.30 pm.

7 Samman members met at E Cell at 2pm. Half an hour later we walked to Mani Bhavan at Gamdevi, where Gandhiji learnt spinning and carding from a carder who used to pass by Mani Bhavan everyday. It is one of the few important places hallowed by Mahatma Gandhi’s close association.
We were fascinated with the evolution of the Indian flag, the picture gallery and Gandhiji’s room on the second floor. We socialized had a good time with each other as a group. We read and saw sculptors, young India along with Gandh’s historic fast. By 4 pm we departed Mani Bhavan,with a lot of knowledge.



Amazing turnout! 35 persons (members, caregivers) present at today’s meeting. Keep it up.

Dr Swati was invited to speak on issues related to hypertension, thyroid, diabetes, and the necessity to have a balanced diet and regular meals. She also emphasized the importance of vitamins C & D for people with epilepsy. We appreciate and thank her for taking the time to enlighten us.

Birthdays celebrated was Ronak Joshi’s (6 July), Christopher Fernandes and
Dr Bina Sawant (25 July). However Bina was unable to attend the meeting. We also celebrated Shenaz Haveliwala winning the Outstanding Person with Epilepsy Award. She will be going to Singapore for the Asian Oceanian Epilepsy Congress around 7th August, to receive the award.






Just returned from a lovely holiday in Goa, where coincidentally I met Dr. Pravina Shah who was staying in a hotel just opposite my resort, and decided to update my blog. Led by Christopher, people discussed their epilepsy related needs and felt that there should be talks on the following issues:
Updates on Epilepsy
Adjustment in joint family
Adjustment to marriage and taking responsibility
Surviving with epilepsy
Problems of travelling and fears of people taking advantage of the pwe during a seizures
Fear of withdrawal of support from family friends relatives in event of seizures worsening
Problems related to loss of memory
Phobia of talking to people without epilepsy
Epilepsy and getting Married- a prevention of taking responsibility – a moral problem
Employment and Epilepsy – Discrimination
Guidence to members who have other ailments like hypertension diabetes or any other along with epilepsy regarding diet exercise etc

Dr. Pravina Shah felt that we should try and arrange these talks, make a time table, and inform people about the topics in advance.

Additionally members felt we needed an outing / picnic for people with epilepsy and their caregivers. Members also felt we could have an EPILEPSY AWARENESS WALK.



Six of us from Samman: Dr. Pravina Shah, Carol, Christopher, Shenaz, Mahesh and Minal conducted the last rural camp in Pen. What made this one special was that Samman Association sponsored it. It benefited78 patients who were given medicines for 12 weeks. The next camp will be held on 24th August.

Since my last post we have had two celebrations at Sarah’s home. A small group of us celebrated Tanvi’s birthday on 30th May and we had another celebration for Minal and Mahesh on last Saturday the 14th. Both we thoroughly enjoyed.

Dr. Sangeeta Ravat and Dr. Urvashi Shah organised the support group meeting on 9th May at KEM Hospital, Parel. 150 patients and family members and 12 regular SAMMAN members attended. Dr. Shubha Patkar the Dean of Seth GS Medical College KEM hospital was the Chief Guest. Neurologist Dr. Sangeeta Ravat and Neuropsychologist covered the basics and psychosocial aspects of epilepsy. Dr. PU Shah spoke on Samman and was followed by Dr. Parkar’s talk on coping strategies. An interactive Q&A session ended the program. Snacks and tea were also served.


Today we celebrate Mahesh and Minal’s wedding. A joyous occasion for Samman. We wish them a long and happy married life🙂

Last Saturday meeting those of us attending the Soul Healing sessions every Thursday shared our experiences. We look forward to more people attending these.

Hope all of you managed to vote!


We all had a jolly time at Dr. Shah’s place with lots of food and friendship. We were also fortunate to meet with Mahesh and Minal who will be getting married on the 4th of May






8th being Women’s day we will be sharing about the women in our lives who have inspired us. If you cannot make it for the meeting you can send the same via email and I will read it to the others. the same day after the meeting few of us will be leaving for Pen to help out at the rural epilepsy clinic. Carol

We celebrated Christmas and the coming new year with a lunch party at Sudama Restaurant at Krishna Palace. Each of the 24 persons present enjoyed a hearty meal. Donations for this purpose mostly obtained through Sarah made this possible. Thanks Sarah!

On the 14th of December at our Support Group Meeting, Bina Sawant brought teachers who taught us how to use the Sha’s Golden ball for the purpose of healing. This uses soul power, mind power, body power and sound power. Twice a month they have healing sessions at Mhatre Pen building Dadar.

On 22nd Dec we had our rural epilepsy clinic which once again was well attended. This time Lupin Limited brought EEG technicians and machines. They were very impressed with the Clinic and promised to help out again. About 100 patients attended this clinic.

On the 11 of Jan our Support Group Meeting will be held at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital, Andheri. All are requested to attend.


Sarah cuts one of the cakes

Sarah cuts one of the cakes

At Sudama restaurant

At Sudama restaurant






Had a fun day today at the Indus Festival of Charities which is excellently organized on the 1st Sat of December every year for various NGOs to sell their products. We ate a lot!! And bought a lot!! And sold a lot of our products too. Took home the most delicious pecan pies:). Thank you Indus. Carolphoto 5


The book Conquering Epilepsy edited by Samman member Carol D’Souza, was launched on 21st November, 2013 at Hotel Krishna Palace by eminent Neurologist Dr. Noshir Wadia. Dr. Wadia congratulated Carol D’Souza for putting together a book which would be helpful to all neurologists, their patients and anyone going through a difficult time and lauded the efforts of neurologist Dr. Pravina Shah, as well as Dr. B.S. Singhal in promoting the efforts of Samman members.

“Epilepsy is a hidden disorder” said Dr. Pravina Shah “in that people with epilepsy look just like any other”. She also said that people do not reveal they have the disorder due to the stigma associated with it. At the press conference held on 22nd November, Carol D’Souza stated that reasons for stigma have come from past beliefs that people with epilepsy were possessed when a seizure occurred. And though we are better informed now that it is a brain disorder, negative attitudes towards people with epilepsy still remain. In view of this it’s all the more courageous for 27 people with epilepsy to talk about their lives and have it published. 6 caregivers who have lost family members who had epilepsy have also given their accounts. The copyright if this book is with Samman Association / IEA.
At the launch people with epilepsy whose lives have been narrated in the book spoke of how they have overcome difficulties relating to education, employment and marriage. Caregivers spoke of the family support they had and the determination of their own children which helped them cope and helped their children become achievers.

Looking forward to you and your family members attending the Conquering Epilepsy book launch on 21st November. We plan to have the Book launch from 6.30 to 8.00 pm and dinner thereafter – all at Krishna Palace, Nana Chowk.

Support group meeting on 28th Sept had a large attendance when members of the World Human Development Center came to talk to us. Thereafter on 12th November we had a very poor attendance and hence did not do much. Wonder who will turn up today.


Through the efforts of our member Keyur Vaghela, a teacher from the World Human Development Center (WHDC)will give a seminar. The WHDC is a socio-economic organization whose goal is to improve the quality of life of huaman beings in all spheres i.e. physical, mental, spiritual, social and economical.

2.30 to 3.00 p.m. – introduction of WHDC and Mr. Latesh Shah the founder
3.00 to 4.00 p.m. what is power and where we get stuck.
4.00 to 4.30 p.m. – solution to your problems and invitation to SP2 (Super Power 2).

We Would like all our members to attend this seminar. Carol D’Souza

By continuing with the ABC of good health, I am learning so much. This time we did D, E & F. Most interesting was the knowledge gained about Fats & Essential Fatty Acids. New to me was the recent research given on the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (AJCN) website which says that heart attacks are not caused due to cholesterol deposits but due to inflammation in the artery wall caused by excess intake of Omega 6. And that without inflammation cholesterol would move freely in the body as intended. I give the link to the most recent article I read (-Heart-surgeon-speaks-out-on-what-really-causes-heart-disease); it is written in very simple language and corresponds to what was given in AJCN. Happy Eating! Carol

Hi, A busy weekend for us. On the 24th we had our support group meeting. Was glad to meet Bharati after a long time. I did the ‘Cs of Good Health’ and Bevinda spoke about the ‘Steps to be taken to achieve good health’ after recently attending a meeting on the same. On the 25th we had an exhibition cum sale of products made by our members. Sale was very good and we created an awareness about our Association.

Once again we will be participating in the Mumbai Marathon and supporting various NGOs and epilepsy groups. photo

We were happy to have Dr. Pravina Shah attend our last support group meeting which was held in Shetty’s Restaurant where we discussed about plans for Samman Association. On the 25th we are having an exhibition cum sale at St. Joseph’s Convent. Do attend or help with the sale. If you have products you would like to sell let us know. See you, Carol

Muskan Foundation that works for people with disabilities organized a 3 day refresher course (5-7th June 2013) to update their teachers on changing trends, understanding of associated disorders, technology and education of children with disabilities.

Professionals from various fields were asked to conduct lectures / workshops. Samman member and Epilepsy Educator Kavita Shanbhag spoke to the teachers about Epilepsy and understanding children with convulsions and its implications to teachers and parents.

Kavita Shanbhag

At the coming Saturday support group meeting we will be doing the Bs of Good Health i.e. Blood sugar, Blood pressure, Blood clots, bacteria and some B foods good for your health i.e. Bananas, beetroot & bran. Please be there at my home from 2 to 4 pm. Carol

The Waghela’s residence is situated in a nice location in Lalbaug area, just beside the Labaug Ganpati (Lalbaug cha Raja). The interior is nice and the balcony is decorated with plants. They are bird lovers.
Their shop is in the same building, ‘H.P.Tailors’.

Ten of us from ‘SAMMAN’ were present. Keyur, his father, mother, grandfather, grandmother and brother, Kunal, welcomed us.

We were served tasty dhoklas, white and yellow along with chatni, followed by icecream.

Kunal who is a yoga teacher, gave a demonstration of pranayam. The evening passed nicely, and we left with good memories.


We are closed for the summer from 27th to 31st May. Carol D’Souza

At the next support group meeting to be held on 25th May, 2013, I will talk about the ABC OF GOOD HEALTH. Beginning with the Alphabet A we will explain the following about your bodily needs:

Acid-Alkaline balance
Amino Acids
‘A’ foods that are good for your health
‘A’ foods that are not good for your health

If we have time we will proceed to the alphabet ‘B’ and so on.

See you, Carol

P.S. Be ready to play a game as well which will test your knowledge!

Had a lovely time at Mukesh’s home yesterday. Carol ImageImageImage

ImageReport by Salil Kulkarni:

The epilepsy awareness programme  at the DAV school, was the first one conducted by UTTEJAN support group outside the IPH premises. This was on 3rd of may 2013.

Short articles for publicity were given in some newspapers.

DAV school  is  situated at Ghodbunder road Thane. The programme was arranged in their conference room.

Dr. Shubha Thatte, psychologist and trustee of IPH, was the main person responsible  for  the training.  The UTTEJAN core members, Dr. Mrunalini Palshikar (Homeopath & Epilepsy couseller at IPH), Dr. Ashwini Marathe (Paediatrician), Alpa Chande ( Remedial counseller at IPH) & Reema Ramchandran (Teacher), were also present.

A number of volunteers from UTTEJAN supported the cause.

The audience included mostly teachers from DAV school, and a few  Persons With Epilepsy and their parents.

The Purple Day booklets (giving information on Epilepsy) and UTTEJAN handbills (which provided information about  UTTEJAN group and problems faced by Persons With Epilepsy) were distributed.  The handbills  were in English and Marathi.

The programme started with a powerpoint presentation, which included facts about epilepsy, such as it’s nature, types, do’s and dont’s, what happens when a person gets a seizure, etc.  All the points in the presentation were elaborated by Dr. Shuba Thatte so that a layman may understand it.

The presentation was followed by an  interactive session. Dr.Thatte  & Dr. Ashwini Marathe cleared doubts of the audience.

Lastly, a film was shown, which was a skit presented by Balmohan Vidyamandir (Dadar) students.  It showed how a student with epilepsy is treated by his co-students.

This programme was for school teachers, so that they may cope better with a student who has epilepsy.


Dr. Shubha Thatte educates the Teachers

On Saturday, 11th April Samman members will meet at Mukesh’s home at 4 pm. Mukesh stays at Wadala near the post office, Mumbai 400031. If you would like to join us, please let me know. Carol

We have decided that in the months of May, June and July we will have only one support group meeting i.e. on the 4th Saturday of the month as many go on holiday in May and many do not not attend in June and July due to the rains. See you on 25th May at my home. Carol

Dr. Pravina Shah will be coming today to Shetty Restaurant , Nana Chowk to review the blood test reports of all the members who had their blood tested on 9th April which Carol organized with Thyrocare. Carol

Hi, 25 persons took the blood test and the results were quite good; minor problems here and there for a few.  The theme of the last meeting was expression of self through song, poetry etc. It started with members singing songs meaningful to them and turned into ‘antakshree’ for a little while when we missed our usual singer Sharvari Khot. We look forward to our rural epilepsy clinic this weekend in Pen. Best wishes to all, Carol

Research has shown that anti epileptic drug treatment can lower folate, vitamin B12 and calcium levels. Many of our members have never taken these tests and we think they are very important for seizure control and good health and should be assessed. Samman in association Thyrocare is organizing a health camp which entails blood testing for the 50 properties mentioned below. All that is required is that you come to their collection center at Bandra on Tue 9th April 2013 (tentative date) at 7 am on an empty stomach (10 hrs fasting). After the test you will be given tea and sandwiches. Cost is Rs.1400/- which is the special discounted rate being charged by Thyrocare. For those who cannot afford the same we will look for sponsors. This is a very good deal. Depending on your interest we will go ahead with the plan. So please inform me within the next 2-3 days. Thanks, Carol

Below are the 50 Blood tests covered in the package.

+ Vitamin B12 (Gastro – Intestinal)

+ Vitamin D


+ Diabetic screen (2)
HbA1c & Average Blood Glucose

+ Lipid Profile (7)
Total Cholesterol, HDL Cholesterol, Triglycerides, LDL Cholesterol, VLDL Cholesterol, TC / HDL Cholesterol ratio, LDL / HDL ratio

+ Liver Profile (10)
Bilirubin (Total), Bilirubin (Direct), Bilirubin (Indirect), SGOT (AST), SGPT (ALT), Alkaline Phosphatase, Gamma Glutamyl Transferase, Serum Albumin, Protein – Total, Serum Albumin / Globulin

+ Renal Profile (5)
Calcium, Uric Acid, Blood Urea Nitrogen, Serum Creatinine, BUN/Creatinine ratio

+ Iron Deficiency Profile (3)
Serum Iron, Total Iron Binding Capacity, % Transferrin Saturation

+ Thyroid Profile (3)
Total Triiodothyronine, Total Thyroxine, Thyroid Stimulating Hormone

+ CBC / Hemogram (17)
White Cell Count, Neutrophils, Lymphocytes, Monocytes, Eosinophils, Basophils, Red Cell Count, Hemoglobin, Hematocrit, Mean Corpuscular Volume, Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin, MCH Concentration, Red Cell Distribution Width, Platelet Count, Platelet Distribution Width, Mean Platelet Volume, ESR

On 16th March we had an annual review of our activities at Shetty restaurant, Nana Chowk, and all members agreed that this blog was good in keeping track of the same.We had a good attendance – a total of 43 people. Members were informed about our activities this past year and new ones were planned. Will be sending the Minutes shortly. Carol

A lot has happened since Tony Greig passed away (my last post). We (our support group) had a tour of some Churches in Bandra (St Peter’s & St. Andrew’s) on the 5th of Jan. After which the entire group met at my place for tea, Mc burgers and other snacks. We then went down Band Stand to enjoy the breeze – actually the cold as it was quite chilly then – and took a photo in front of Shahrukh Khan’s bungalow.

We have been having regular support group meetings every 2nd and 4th Saturday and we also made a trip to Hyderabad from the 5th to the 10th of Feb for ECon as well as sightseeing. Enjoyed the trip to Ramojee Film City and the Sightseeing tour.

I look forward to meeting our members at our Review meeting which will be held on 16th March at 4 pm at Shetty restaurant, Nana Chowk. Our next Rural Epilepsy Clinic is on 21st April at Pen.

Best wishes, Carol

Tony Greig who was diagnosed with cancer in October passed away in Sydney, Australia. He suffered his first epileptic fit at the age of 14 during a tennis match. Tennis’ loss was cricket’s gain – he had a truly outstanding and successful career – as player and then commentator. Whilst he played the game now many knew he had epilepsy, but after retiring as a player he was a true epilepsy advocate and did a lot of work to create awareness and acceptance of people with epilepsy, especially in Australia. We will truly miss him. Carol

On the 22nd Samman members celebrated Christmas at Sarah’s place. We began the celebration with a quiz on the birth and life of Christ and the Catholics took the opportunity to educate the others about Jesus Christ. We then had a game of bingo / housie which is one game that is truly enjoyed by all. Jokim brought a delicious black forest cake; Sujatha Gopalan in celebration of her new grand daughter contributed malai pedas, and I brought some rose cookies which were enjoyed by all. Carol


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