National: Sarthak Educational Trust has for the last 13 years been striving to empower the lives of persons with disabilities through its verticals of Early Intervention, vocational skill training and sustainable employment, advocacy, Abilympics and IDEA (Indian disability empowerment alliance) empowering the lives of more than 22,000 persons with disabilities, with the support of 1000+ partners and geographic presence over 15 States of India.
During the 7th National Conference on Disability and Sarthak’s 13th Annual Day panel discussion, an analysis was made on how powerful stories of the disabled community are not highlighted enough. To bridge this gap, Sarthak has determined to bring to the fore exemplary stories from the disabled community to inform and create awareness, counter stigma and misinformation about this oft-forgotten group to the larger audience. Persons with disabilities are individuals that are a part of human diversity. By increasing the awareness and understanding of disability issues and the diversity of persons with disabilities and their situations, they are given the opportunity to actively contribute in all aspects of societal life.
Here is a story of Rakhi from Sarthak Delhi Center who has hearing impairment but is using her abilities to live an independent, strong life.
Disability: Hearing Impaired
Organisation: Big Basket
Rakhi’s dreams and the efforts she has put to achieve those dreams have been indefatigable. Her disability brought many challenges with her but Rakhi was always enthused to do more. Born 100 per cent deaf, she completed her schooling at a school for the deaf and learned sign language as part of the curriculum. What could she do thereafter was neither clear to her nor her parents were aware enough to guide her. She was clueless and disarrayed.
Then, with some divine intervention – as she confidently claims – she got to know about Sarthak Ghaziabad centre, supported by Capgemini, in a job fair. On further inquiry, the team-oriented her about the training programme, placement prospects, and stories of many individuals with hearing impairment, working successfully. The interaction that lasted hardly a few minutes, proved to be a life-changer for her. She grabbed the opportunity and registered the very next day.
She utilised the three months programme effectively to hone her skills and prepared herself for employability. Currently, Rakhi is working in Big Basket and is determined to make it huge. She has developed a lens that is imperative for her to always focus on her abilities and continue to inspire those around her.
Dedicatedly catering to her customers, Rakhi says “Thank You” with a sparkle in her eyes and a wide smile. She has miles to go before she sleeps!