I wanted to write on this topic from quite a long however due to some or the other reasons, I kept delaying this. But never the less I am here today to talk about Inclusion.
What is Inclusion ? We all talk about inclusion, accessibility and equal opportunities to all. What is this equal opportunity / accessibility, whom are we referring to ?
We are talking about inclusion, accessibily and equal opportunity to people with special needs.
There are a few companies out there, conducting job fairs for people with different physical and intellectual problems. However there is still a huge section out there unaware, unreached, uneducated.
It’s really nice to see people coming in large number and creating awareness on a certain day; World Cerebral Palsi day, World Autism day, etc…
Way back in 2018, World CP day, when I was felicitated with the Young Achievers Award by Adapt I was on cloud9. However such events should be conducted more often.
I remember a few years back when I went on a trip to Mumbai Darshan, all excited. I was disappointed when the Tourist Guide restricted me of getting off the bus at the first destination just because I may not be able to come back on time. This happened for the next 4 destinations. I finally raised my voice and said I didn’t pay you just to sit in the bus and people around supported, that was when the Guide apologized and let me visit the remaining destinations. We still need to reach out these areas for more accessibility and inclusion.
There are quite a few places where they have palki service to carry people with motion disability to their desired destination. One such place was ‘Elephanta Caves’ . Having the option to be carried I opted to climb up myself as I wanted to enjoy and explore every place there. Though I couldn’t walk for 2 days after that 😆 Well jokes apart the palki service is a nice facility for people with motion disability. People are willing to extend support, all we need is to raise our concerns / voices wherever possible.
Due to these facilities I visited the Mysore Palace with a lot more ease and comfort
Companies are willing to hire differently able people but are they really aware about the problems people face after hiring. Every person suffering from. Cerebral Palsi come with a different set of physical and intellectual problems.
Like in my case, it’s difficult for me to keep up with speed and pace of my colleagues. I was lucky my first employer allowed me to work on my own system to make me more comfortable. I slowly picked up speed and also got over the vision issue by increasing the font size of my screen. Even after years of experience I still find it difficult to adjust in a new work environment. All we need here is patience and time.
I don’t make new friends easily. I only talk to a few known people around me. As a recruiter it was a real challenge for me interacting with new people day in day out. I still stammer at times but I manage interacting as much as needed professionally. Personally I still stay silent when it comes to interacting with a new person😁
I never faced any challenge getting into a normal school or college. For me I had ‘Inclusion’ , ‘Acessibity’ and ‘Equal Opportunities’ almost everywhere I stepped.
Ofcourse there were struggles but I had strong support everywhere I.e. family, friends, teachers, colleagues and empowers. I feel like I was born with a golden spoon 😎.
This was my story but there are many out there still struggling for recognition. We need to reachout to more such people