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Debjani Chatterjee



A new book is available to help children with asthma and their parents. The inspiring children’s book, ‘A Special Assembly’ has been written by award winning writer Debjani Chatterjee and provides information on managing asthma in a south Asian cultural and social context with guidance notes in English and different south Asian languages for parents. The book tells the story of a young boy with asthma who wants to follow in the footsteps of his favourite cricket player.

A study by The Office of Public Services Reform (OPSR) identified a set of key cultural differences and issues amongst Asian families, which could lead to poor management of asthma. This includes:
> A resistance to inhaled medications amongst Asian families,
> Asian children may have different triggers to an asthma attack such as fizzy drinks,
> diagnosis of asthma is less common in Asian children.

There are over 5 million people in the UK who are currently receiving treatment for asthma, with around a fifth of those being children. It is one of the most common conditions in UK and is potentially life threatening if not managed correctly, with Asthma UK estimating around one person dying every six hours in the UK. On average there are 3 children with asthma in every classroom in the UK .

Created by the Asian People’s Disability Alliance, the only UK voluntary organisation set up managed and run by Asian people with disabilities, ‘A Special Assembly’ was funded by Asthma UK to promote key self-management messages to south Asian families with asthma.

The book is available to order for free (except for postage and packaging). To order a copy, please contact Icky Hasnain at or call 0208 902 2083.


For further details please contact:
Gurpreet Braich 0208 902 5575

Calculated from figure of 1 in 10 children having asthma and average class size of approx 30.