NGO partners with ICMR to train professionals for reduced mobility

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Dr Deepali Bhardwaj

With an aim of training students, nurses, and medical practitioners in utilising assistive devices and fostering sensitivity towards individuals with reduced mobility, an NGO in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research has initiated a sensitization training workshops at medical colleges and hospitals here.

The workshops have been held at the Vardhman Mahavir Medical College (VMCC) of the Safdarjung Hospital, the Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences (IHBAS), and the Hindu Rao Hospital among others. The NGO Svayam aims to train over 600 students, nurses, and medical practitioners to sensitize them towards individuals with reduced mobility and how the quality of their life can enhanced with the help of assistive devices, said  Sminu Jindal, Founder-Chairperson of the NGO.

Svayam along with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) hosted a discussion ‘Accessibility and Assistive Devices are crucial for Viksit Bharat’ on March 27 in which over 70 professionals from institutions such as AIIMS, ICRC, ICMR, WHO, Ministry of Railways, among others participated. Partnering with the ICMR and a network of 20 NGOs, Svayam is spearheading a national campaign to highlight the critical need for inclusive environments and assistive technologies for a significant portion of the population.

Svayam, in collaboration with 20 NGOs spanning across 35 districts in 10 states, is advocating for the global recognition of 27th March as the World Accessibility Day. With an estimated 26.8 million people living with disabilities and 104 million aged 65 and above facing mobility constraints, the need for concerted efforts is evident. “Despite these challenges, India lacks a designated day dedicated to accessibility. Establishing such an occasion could catalyse unified action and focused initiatives to enhance accessibility nationwide,” Mr Jindal said.