Celebrating World Accessibility Day: Svayam and ICMR Collaborate to Conduct Training to reach 600+ Medical Practitioners

Svayam collaborates with NDFDC and 20 NGOs across 35 districts in 10 states to declare 27th March as the World Accessibility Day

India, 19th March 2024: Accessibility in India presents a complex challenge, encompassing physical and social barriers for individuals with reduced mobility. As per Census 2011, an estimated 26.8 million people living with disabilities in India and 104 million aged 65 and above face mobility constraints; the need for concerted efforts is evident. Notwithstanding being such an important concern affecting everyone, India lacks a designated day dedicated to accessibility. Establishing such an occasion could catalyse unified action and focused initiatives to enhance accessibility nationwide. Recognizing this imperative, Svayam, a prominent accessibility organization, is set to mark World Accessibility Day on March 27th for the second consecutive year. Accessibility Awareness Campaign is also being celebrated by Svayam from 14th March 2024 to 27th March 2024.

Partnering with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) this year, Svayam has been conducting workshops & sensitization training sessions based on RPwD Act 2016. Research shows over 2.5 billion globally need assistive technologies. Through interactive workshops at medical colleges in Delhi, such as AIIMS, Safdarjung VMCC, and Lady Harding, they will train 600+ students, nurses, and medical practitioners in utilizing assistive devices and fostering sensitivity towards individuals with reduced mobility.

Together, Svayam and ICMR will seek to address pervasive challenges hindering access to healthcare facilities due to lack of accessibility. Additionally, both are jointly organizing a brainstorming session discussing accessibility and assistive devices, which are crucial for Viksit Bharat. The National List of Essential Assistive Products (NLEAP) underscores the significance of 21 APs and technologies essential for improving the quality of life and societal engagement of those with functional impairments. Their collaborative efforts will aim to promote the transformative benefits of essential assistive products listed in the NLEAP.

Svayam is also set to collaborate with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to spearhead an awareness campaign on accessibility. With outreach extending to over 90 ICRC partners across India, the joint initiative aims to drive meaningful change and promote inclusivity.

Ms. Sminu Jindal, Founder-Chairperson of Svayam, expressed her sentiments on the collaborations, stating, “On this 2nd-year celebration of the World Accessibility Day, we affirm that accessibility is a fundamental right for all. Through this ongoing awareness campaign, we wish for equitable use of resources to provide equal opportunities for all. Together with our partners in change, we are working for a future without barriers.”

Dr Ravinder Singh, Senior Scientist ICMR and Co-Chair India Health Dialogue, said, “Our aim is to create an accessible and inclusive healthcare environment. Accessibility and assistive devices are essential pillars of Viksit Bharat. Leveraging Svayam’s expertise in advocating for universal accessibility, together we’ll raise awareness and sensitize future healthcare professionals across the Country. We wholeheartedly support Svayam in promoting accessibility in the healthcare sector.”

To further amplify the message of accessibility and inclusion, Svayam has joined forces with National Divyangjan Finance and Development Corporation (NDFDC), Paralympic Committee of India (PCI), Differently Abled Cricket Council of India (DCCI), and 20 NGOs across Delhi, UP, Bihar, Gujarat, and Madhya Pradesh to designate March 27th as the World Accessibility Day. Together, they aim to raise awareness about the importance of accessibility and inclusion nationwide.

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