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Dads For Life /
Posted 5 months ago

As we celebrate Father’s Day this June, we appreciate fathers like 𝗔𝗻𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗟𝗮𝗹 who have overcome many challenges to become their child’s biggest coach, playmate and cheerleader. Father to a fourteen year old son with intellectual disabilities, apraxia and dyspraxia. Anand Lal is a swim coach, adult training facilitator and gamification consultant who has overcome the challenges of bringing up a child with special needs to champion the cause of making Singapore a more inclusive society. Despite minor development delays in the early months, Anand and his wife did not discover their son’s condition until he was 18 months old and had to be hospitalised for high fever. The revelation was devastating for Anand and his wife who realised that their lives would be drastically changed and whose hopes and dreams for their son were dashed. Having a child with special needs meant a bigger financial burden on the family. With support from his mother-in-law, Anand and his wife worked as hard as they could in growing their careers while balancing the needs of their son who needed constant care and attended multiple therapy sessions. Five years ago, Anand realized that his son who was in his pre-teens needed more of a father’s attention. Having reached the peak of his career, Anand quit his full-time job and took up a part time role as a financial consultant to spend more time with his son, taking him on adventure trips and indulging in swimming, his favourite activity. Being able to give his undivided attention and seeing his previously uncommunicative son develop the ability to express his likes and dislikes have been one of the greatest joys for Anand. The biggest challenges in raising a child with special needs is helping the child assimilate into society and the constant worry of what will happen to the child when the parents are no longer around, says Anand. As such, Anand has been helping to build awareness of the needs of these children as well as a more inclusive society by volunteering with the Special DADs for Life group - a father group under Centre for Fathering which seeks to support fathers of children with special needs. He is also a CaringSG CAREBuddy leader. Anand and his wife have another 16 month old boy. Join the 𝗦𝗽𝗲𝗰𝗶𝗮𝗹 𝗗𝗔𝗗𝘀 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝗟𝗶𝗳𝗲 community here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/287091696094638 This series is part of 𝗖𝗲𝗹𝗲𝗯𝗿𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗙𝗮𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗿𝘀 𝟮𝟬𝟮𝟭. Initiated in 2016, the Celebrating Fathers campaign seeks to raise awareness of the importance of active fatherhood with a line-up of exciting activities to celebrate Father’s Day every year. This campaign is jointly organised by Centre for Fathering, MumsforLife, DADs for Life, Families for Life and Mediacorp, in support of the Made For Families initiative. Find out more at www.celebratingfathers.sg! #CelebratingFathers2021 #RolesOfAFather #DadsforLife #MumsforLife #FamiliesforLife #Mediacorp #MadeforFamilies #Parenting #Parenthood #FathersDay2021 #ThankYouDadSG2021 #Singapore

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