MRS. ROBINA INAM KHAN is
running a unique institution of its kind under the title of Karachi
Vocational Training Center (KVTC) in Defense Housing Society for the
cure and training of mentally handicapped children which has cured and
trained many mentally retarded and handicap kids of various class of
society. As many as 12 mentally retarded children after getting cured
and occupational training got married and are now parents of healthy
kids. Robina Inam was born in Hyderabad in 1956, she went Aden when she
was only three years old. She returned here when she was 13 and got
basic academic education from Karachi. She got nine-year Industrial
Training in UK followed by practical work experience in field. She
joined many Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in Karachi on
voluntarily basis. Finally she founded KVTC for the citizens of Karachi
in 1991 with the help of a small group of psychologists and
philanthropists and only just over a decade her institution became
leading institution for the cure, education and training center for the
mentally handicapped youths and adults in Karachi.
Would you like to share the reasons of selecting to establish an
institution for mentally handicapped children?
when I was 12 or so I started thinking just opposite from other
people when I saw few mentally retarded people. I also saw my cousin who
was mentally retarded and people used to ask her to pray (Dua) for their
domestic crisis. So these people remained a central point in my mind.
The question that "why they were different from other normal
people?" Dozens of questions used to rise daily in my mind but I
seldom asked to anyone. With the passage of time and getting education,
I reached on the conclusion that mentally retarded children need our
help and we ought to do something for them. Luckily I married to a
psychologist Dr. Inam-ur-Rahman Khan and I started learning handle
mentally retarded kids. So in 1990, KVTC came on papers and in 1991 a
small center was established in DHA.
Why did you select a posh locality for KVTC like Defense Housing
Simply because of the fact that, in high society a mentally retarded kid
is treated as a burden and parents want to get rid of him or her and
provide every facility to their normal children. But in middle class and
lower class society a mentally retarded child is not neglected such a
way. I have seen that middle and lower class society feel a religious
obligation to sacrify their happiness and time for them. This is the
reason that now KVTC has a hostel where students "special
children" are kept and 98 percent of them belong to high society.
At present 1500 students are on waiting list due to limited capacity in
the KVTC and its hostel.
Apart from your husband and three children who else helped you in your
There are many people. But without Karachi-based Industrialists and
Defense Housing Authority (DHA) my dream could never become a reality. I
don't thank them because I can not thank them. Almighty Allah will give
them reward for what they have done for mentally retarded children.
There is a long list of friends of KVTC and that is very long. But my
mission is even longer.
What is your mission and goal?
I don't know whether it is going to be completed in my life or not
but I want to establish a countrywide network of KVTC, which has centers
with hostels in every city of Pakistan. I want to set up training
centers for teachers for handling of mentally retarded children. There
are many women and men who want to work for mentally retarded children
but they need training for that purpose. I want to set up a system
countrywide where mentally retarded children could be cured and made
valuable elements of the society. I wish I were sufficient to complete
the remaining huge program of my mission.
own children are not neglected as you have devoted your life for
mentally retarded children?
No not at all, they also help me in my mission, they give their lot of
time and they respect my mission. Am lucky that Almighty Allah has given
me such nice two sons and a daughter and above all am lucky that am
married to Dr. Inam-ur-Rahman Khan who apart from a very, very good
psychologist is a nice husband.
have learnt that you have devoted yourself to the mentally retarded
children that you stay home even when you had fracture in your shin and
when your were suffering from severe health crisis.
ROBINA INAM: Yes,
but KVTC is part of my home it does not give me such feelings that
usually work places give to others. On the contrary, whenever I am not
feeling well I came in KVTC and spend time with students and that give
me relaxation. My house was very far from the KVTC. But now on my
pressure and demand Dr. Inam has managed to get a house near center and
now I can see KVTC from my house.