Skill Development for Persons with Disabilities
Published on: 03 Oct, 2023
Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all. - Hellen Keller
People with disabilities have gone on to create unimaginable history. Through their sheer determination, they've gone on to prove they can work and succeed like anyone else. It is established that PwDs can not only nurture skills as much as anyone else, but can also contribute to the success of any workplace.
However, despite their strong will many PwDs face several challenges in securing employment and making a living. The major roadblock behind this: the lack of a skilled workforce. The PwD employment rate, using data from the Ministry of Statistics, as of 2021, shows that almost 64% of the PwD population remains unemployed.
However, not everything is bleak. Corporations across India are now working to partner with more people with disabilities and provide them with a means of sustenance. And companies catering to the varied needs of people with disabilities, such as Atypical Advantage are constantly working to make employability easy for those with special needs.
The Reality Hurts..
Persons with disabilities face many challenges when seeking employment. The most common ones include lack of accessibility features, limited assistive tech, and a negative attitude from coworkers or customers that PwDs have to interact with, as per Nitin Dave, CEO of Quess General Staffing. He also states that most Indian companies can alleviate these issues by providing equal opportunities for advanced education programs such as inclusive skill development programs and by generating awareness about the capabilities of PwD and the opportunities that are available to them.
..But the Future is Promising!
The time is ripe for PwDs to seek employment. Many of the industry's most prominent players are now expanding opportunities to hire persons with disabilities. Big corporations like Nestle, HDFC ERGO, Amazon, Accenture and Godrej Properties, among many more have been promoting inclusivity through myriad campaigns and hiring PwD candidates across a number of roles.
Atypical Advantage has been proud to partner with them to promote a vision of inclusivity and diversified workplaces. Some of our campaigns are also held for candidates on the broader neurodiversity spectrum (including autism, ADHD, bipolar disorder, dyslexia). The important deciding factor when it comes to seizing the opportunities presented to PwDs is the accumulation of skills. And AA has your back for that!
Skills can do Miracles
Skills are like the spices that flavor up a soup. In the right proportion, they elevate a person’s chance of finding employment by a considerable notch. They also play a pivotal role in ensuring inclusion and equal opportunities in the workplace. Skill development arms PwDs with the requisite tools and knowledge to overcome barriers and stand toe-to-toe with their peers. It makes them self-reliant and improves their employability outcomes.
Atypical Advantage for PwD
Finding jobs that are targeted towards your respective skills and needs is a must to secure employment. There are many job-finding portals, however not all are accessible to everyone. The Atypical Advantage job portal is purposefully designed to help PwD candidates and is a two-way affair, allowing both employers and potential employees to sign up. With over 15000+ profiles covering 21 disabilities across over 50 cities and the best-in-class resources, jobs are made available to candidates on the basis of diversity, skills and abilities. For individuals seeking jobs, you can quickly sign up directly or via 150+ NGO partners who also upskill PwDs.
When you become a "talent" member, your profile will be evaluated automatically and will be sent for the latest job openings that fit your skill level, experience and needs.
Skill Development Programs that empower PwDs
But the question is, How would you land jobs if you do not possess the necessary skill-set? Fret not as Atypical Academy provides you with tons of learning opportunities with our multifaceted programs facilitating skill development for persons with disabilities. Many successful skill development courses and workshops have already been organized by Atypical Academy and we promise to keep organizing more in the future. AA has set its sights on the goal of upskilling PwDs so they can do more and achieve more.
Some examples of courses and workshops that have successfully helped in upskilling PwDs orchestrated by AA include:
1. MS Excel workshops, organized for skill development for individuals with different disabilities including:
- Autistic and Intellectually disabled
2. AWS Workshop on Cloud Practitioner Essentials (CPE) skills taught by Amazon trainers
3. Courses on Business Communication accessible to all and with sign language support.
At AA, registrations for workshops and courses are almost always open for an arena of skill building programs, ranging from business and finance to software learning and soft skills. The courses are designed with the idea of accessibility for all. A unique feature of our workshops is their disability-specific nature, meaning people with different disabilities always find it easy to access training. We offer facilities like screen reader accessibility for the visually impaired, sign language interpreters for those with hearing impairment and mobile-friendly courses for those with limited access to IT equipment.
In Vineet Saraiwala, the founder of Atypical Advantage's own words, the ultimate aim of a venture like this is to fill the unemployment gap among India's PwD so that there's not even a need for platforms like ours.
Inspiration Is Just Outside The Window...
You are what you think. In order to succeed, you must envision success and manifest it. And successful you will be. To inspire you on your journey, here are just a couple of the thousands of success stories woven by our talented PwDs:
Axn Sadokpam: After losing his father in 2016 and his sight in 2017, life seemed bleak for Manipur resident Axn. As he came to terms with his blindness, his newfound purpose of documenting his journey as a PwD on his YouTube channel kept him going. His financial situation wasn’t great but against all odds, he kept going and this led him into the embrace of Atypical Advantage. A few weeks later, he was standing at the threshold of his dream job at Great Place to Work with his head held high.
Srikanth: Struggling with hearing impairment, Srikanth went bankrupt during the pandemic. “Many interviewers conducted phone interviews despite my request for video calls,” he says. Then he found Atypical Advantage. His life changed as he landed a job at Amazon through the Atypical Advantage job portal. He advises those facing similar challenges to never give up on their dreams.
While life might have challenged them with several obstacles and hardships, one thing that every successful individual professes to is the power of never giving up. From having India’s foremost inclusive job portal for both employers and aspirants, fully supported with sign language and screen reader assistance, constant mentorship, and disability sensitization workshops to massively upskilling PwDs thought accessible courses and workshops, Atypical Advantage is playing a small part in bettering the lives of those who never give up, no matter the odds.