Women Changing the Disability Arena in India
Women Changing the Disability Arena in India
Women have been inspiring, helming some of the most crucial leadership roles globally. 1SpecialPlace celebrates the tremendous efforts by women in shaping an equal future for all. On this International Women’s Day, we take a look at some inspiring women who are
changing the disability area in India. We want to commemorate the astonishing achievements of women in the disability area.
Mrs Pratiksha Gupta
Pratiksha Gupta is the Founder & CEO of 1SpecialPlace, which is India’s pioneering, award winning Speech Therapy organisation. She has been a practicing Speech Language Therapist and Audiologist since 2007. Pratiksha is a Gold Medalist from University of Mysore and a course topper from University College London. She has worked in a variety of clinical settings, including hospitals, early intervention centres, and clinics worldwide.
Pratiksha has delivered various workshops and trainings for schools, universities and corporates in India and overseas. 1SpecialPlace has bagged various awards for their innovation in the industry including honours by Amazon and AssisTech.
Mrs. Kamini Lakhani
Mrs. Kamini Lakhani is a founder of SAI Connections and an Autism mother, she says“When Mohit, my son was little, I promised him I would speak up for him and others like him, till they spoke up for themselves. I’m just keeping up my end of the promise. Respectful
and dignified treatment of autistic individuals is crucial.
Mrs. Anshul Batra
Mrs. Anshul Batra is an Autism super mother and a 1Special Woman Awardee, she says “Justkeep moving, don’t stop, don’t give up… believe in your son and yourself. “Apna time Aayega”!
Mrs. Bharati Kapoor
Mrs. Bharati Kapoor is an outstanding Psychologist and Senior Special Educator. She shares a snippet from her experience “A child who had been referred to us when he was in the 6th for intellectual disability came back to tell us that he was an engineer and working in renewable energy.”
Dr. Sonali Kataria
Dr. Sonali Kataria is a doctor and mother of two beautiful children. She goes on to say “If you are an entrepreneur, who wishes to have a great workforce of employees, and you have work that can perhaps interest a person with autism, then an autistic person is the best employee for you.”
“When you meet a person with autism, look beyond the lost, disconnected child. See the beauty of the human being in there, who is waiting to be accepted for who he is, and included
with all of you, in this very world.”
Mrs. Gopika Kapoor
Mrs. Gopika Kapoor is an author and an Autism mother. She quotes “Never underestimate the potential of an individual with a difference – any difference. We all are capable of contributing meaningfully to society, including people on the spectrum. By underestimating
them, we do not allow them to fulfil their potential, and that is doing a disservice to them.”
Ms. Gouri Ganta
Ms. Gouri Ganta is the founder of “Maasi” an organization that caters to sensory needs of people. She says “I think everyone has their own journey and one should trust that, however, it is always advisable to ask for help and explore various possible ways to help/heal individuals as none of us are alone in this.”
Mrs. Sulekha, mother of Ms. Ruwi is the founder of a home décor page called “Thumbi byRuwi”. She says “Parenting a child with autism can be stressful, reach out for help from professionals, talk to other parents who have walked the path before you.”
Dr. Sushma Nagarkar
Dr. Sushma Nagarkar is the founder of Mumbai’s popular café “Café Arpan”. She quotes “A country like India has the second largest population in the world, a country with such diversity will flourish with acceptance, empowerment, and inclusion. These three words form
the pillars of what I believe should be the future of the disability sector.”
Mrs. Mini Dwivedi Gopinathan
Mrs. Mini Dwivedi Gopinathan is the founder of “PlayStreet” Bangalore. She says, “My take home line for Parents of children with special needs is “Slow down yourself to speed up the development of your child”
Ms. Deepa Garwa
Ms. Deepa Garwa is a reading consultant for people with special needs. She says ““I believe life teaches us a new lesson every day, it is only up to us to see those as life changing experiences. The one thing that I have learned over all these years is the fact that your attitude
can change the course of your life. Everything can be dealt with a positive attitude.”
Mrs. Smrithy Rajesh
Mrs. Smrithy Rajesh is an enigmatic and enthusiastic role model for parents and a charming human. She quotes “Accept and understand Autism. Acceptance starts from us. The mother is the best therapist and love is the best method for our kids. Find their strengths and at the same time train them to handle their difficulties too.”
Ms. Neha Tiwari
Ms. Neha Tiwari is a trained Speech-Language Pathologist and an Audiologist. She goes on to say “Working and Spreading awareness about the field in remote areas, getting to know the ground level difficulties of professionals working in remote areas and how they cope with the limitations has been an enriching experience.”
Mrs. Kreeti Mitra Bhatia
Mrs. Kreeti Mitra Bhatia is the founder of “The Special Mom”. She shares her thoughts with us. “I dream of a future where everyone is co-existing with happiness, understanding & acceptance. My next goal is inclusion & acceptance of all the children thus helping the future generation of people to live in a beautiful world where special needs children are understood and welcomed.”
Ms. Khwaish Gupta
Ms. Khwaish Gupta is an advocate for the sign language community. She shares “Do not let disability define you.”
Dr. Prathibha Karanth
Dr. Prathibha Karanth is the founder and director of COMDEALL Trust in India. She shares “Try to identify aspects of it that you find fascinating and challenging; then pursue it as best as you can along with like-minded professionals within our field as well as other related
Ms. Aparna Das
Ms. Aparna Das is the founder of Project “ARUNIMA”- a project for adults with Autism. She says, “Our goal is to bring each person to the level of “happy independence” possible because that is a human right. They are not the only ones who have to learn the ways of the “neurotypical” world. The world has to learn their ways too, and both respect and accept them, to achieve true inclusion.”
Ms. Prachi Deo
Ms. Prachi Deo is the founder and executive director of “Nayi Disha” an organization for people with developmental disability. She says, “Our Vision is to enable and equip families affected by developmental disabilities to be the change agents in the development journey of
their loved ones, and not leave any family behind.”
Mrs. Pooja Joshi Bhadrige
Mrs. Pooja Joshi Bhadrige is the founder of the Angelman Foundation India, shares “Staying positive is the key to a better life. I know it is very difficult. But unless the parents are happy, they cannot pass it to their children. Children will achieve a great milestone if he/ she is
Ms. Seema Lal
Ms. Seema Lal is one of the members of TogetherWeCan working relentlessly for childrenwith needs. She shares “With the alarming increase in diagnosis of neurodevelopmental disorders, autism in particular, the disability sector becomes a perfect for both business and
abuse thanks to the extreme vulnerability of both children and parents. We glorify disability by calling it a different ability/special need/divyang but fail to provide the basic human right to safety and dignity of life. Education and inclusion become a far cry unless families are empowered to voice for the same.”
To all the strong women out there, we admire and salute you!
Happy Women’s Day!