International Day of Persons with Disabilities: Inspiring work for PwDs

Nearly one billion people out of the total population, i.e. 7 billion or approximately 15% of the world’s population, are disabled in some form or the other. Developing countries are home to 80% of the world’s disabled people.

International Day of Persons with Disabilities
More than 100 million disabled people are children. People with Disabilities (PwDs) have been "disproportionately" affected by the health, social, and economic consequences of global issues.

By Yuvraj Pokharna

The International Day of Persons with Disabilities is an annual global observance held on December 3rd with the goal of promoting the rights and well-being of people with disabilities in all aspects of society. Nearly one billion people out of the total population, i.e. 7 billion or approximately 15% of the world’s population, are disabled in some form or the other. Developing countries are home to 80% of the world’s disabled people.

More than 100 million disabled people are children. People with Disabilities (PwDs) have been “disproportionately” affected by the health, social, and economic consequences of global issues. As a result, the day is observed to encourage disabled people to participate in the world’s sustainable development.

Rajkot based, Poojaben Patel, once a housewife, and now a board member of national trust, running under the aegis of Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment in the Government of India, mothers a 13 year old specially-abled boy. She is yet another inspiring and stupendous personality dedicated towards serving the differently abled children and she also holds an M.Ed. in MR Special Education.

Poojaben says that “I have felt that people with disabilities can have equal participation in the society. Ensuring that our children get the right values regarding people with disabilities is a responsibility for all of us and I am proud that efforts are being made in this direction by people of all walks in life.”

She presides Prayas Parents Association for Child with Special Needs and chairs many leading organizations.

The annual commemoration of this day was established in 1992 by United Nations General Assembly resolution 47/3 with the goal of raising awareness of the issues confronting people with disabilities in all aspects of political, social, economic, and cultural life. After decades of work in the disability field, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) was adopted in 2006.

Surat based, Dr Anjana Bidari, is a pioneer in the education for specially abled children. She co-founded Independent Living Institute (ILI) in 2016 along with Ms Jula Zaveri. ILI aims to make special children above 12 years age, independent & self-reliant individuals by providing various requisite skills. “My daughter Dhruti (autistic) is an inspiration to build the vocational centre. I am grateful to god to be able to help my daughter and kids like her. Here, we strive to help them to function independently, earn for their livelihood and have a self reliant life. Their each step towards achieving independence is a big step for us as society,” says Dr Anjana

In the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and other international development frameworks, the CRDP advanced the rights and well-being of people with disabilities. The main goal was to increase disabled people’s participation in society, end discrimination against them, and create equal opportunities for them. Disabled people face poor health, a lack of equal opportunities in education, and, in some cases, discrimination at work. This, in turn, has an impact on their lifestyle as well as their physical well-being. As a result, the day is observed to raise awareness about their issues and to make the world a better place for them.

(The author is a Surat-based Educationist, Columnist and Social Activist. Views expressed are personal and do not reflect the official position or policy of the Financial Express Online. )

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