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Say Yes to Access this International Day of Persons with Disabilities

This event was part of the organisation’s larger ‘Yes to Access’ project, an initiative dedicated to creating a more accessible world for PWD

On the occasion of International Day of Persons with Disabilities, the Association of People with Disability (APD) held a public event at the Jawahar Bal Bhawan, Cubbon Park, to drive awareness about accessibility and inclusion

On Sunday, December 3rd, the Association of People with Disability (APD)  hosted a special event at Jawahar Bal Bhavan, Cubbon Park, from 10 am to 1 pm on account of International Day for People with Disabilities. The event was part of the organisation’s larger ‘Yes to Access’ project, an initiative dedicated to creating a more accessible world for People with Disabilities (PwDs). As part of the project, a poignant Pledge was crafted to amplify awareness and support for an inclusive world.

Recognizing the profound impact of accessibility on people with disabilities – unlocking doors to education, employment, equal opportunities, and a barrier-free world – the event featured an array of performances showcasing the incredible talents of APD’s beneficiaries, students from Shradhanjali Integrated School, an inclusive school run by the organisation, and dedicated staff. From captivating art displays to mesmerising wheelchair dance performances, the event was a testament to the resilience and creativity of the disability community.

Distinguished guests graced the occasion, with Dr. Chethana Thirthahalli, Lead, Health at HCL Foundation, serving as the Chief Guest. National Award-winning actor and former Member of Legislative Council (MLC), Tara and Writer and Director Gururaj Kulkarni Nadagouda also graced the occasion in a show of support. 

Dr. Chethana emphasized the importance of collaborative action to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for persons with disabilities, underscoring the need for a united effort to create a more accessible and inclusive society. 

Talking about the importance of accessibility, she mentioned, “Optimizing the health and well-being of people with disabilities is essential to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Because the experience of disability is universal across the lifespan and impacts all areas of human life, disability is relevant to the implementation of all SDGs. It is inspiring to see the extent to which organizations of persons with disabilities are driving forward to involve  people with disability in various ways.”

Dr Senthil NS Kumar, CEO of the Association of People with Disability (APD), shared, “India is home to a remarkable 2.68 crore people with disabilities (PwDs), yet their visibility does not align with this significant number. This invisibility is the reason why PwDs are often not a consideration when public and private infrastructure are planned. And, they are invisible because they currently lack access to these same public and private spaces to participate in a full and dignified life. Providing them access to a more inclusive and barrier-free environment could enhance their visibility and lead to better recognition of their needs.”

The event, marked by its vibrant performances and insightful discussions, left a lasting impact on attendees. 

About The Association of People with Disability (APD) 

APD is a pioneering non-profit organisation established in 1959 by the Late MS. N. S. Hema. APD has impacted over 7 lakh People with Disability from underprivileged communities from remote, rural, and poor socioeconomic backgrounds. Various programs by APD cover 21 disabilities stated in the RPWD Act 2016. With a diverse and inclusive team of over 330 members (45% Women and 30% PwD’s), APD reaches out to over 1,00,000 direct and indirect beneficiaries annually. APD is managed by a professional team of developmental and technical experts overseen by an eminent Board of Governors and Trustees. The Association maintains the highest standard of governance, has been acknowledged by multiple donors and is accredited by independent agencies like the TISS, Credibility Alliance, RCI, and NIPMAN Foundation.

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