The Enable Makeathon 2.0 will address 12 challenges relating to employability and accessibility. The challenges have been crowd sourced from communities across India and the developing world, and are based on expereinces of disabled people in a conflict and post conflict environments.
Access to Transport
Travel by public and private transport remains challenging in both urban and rural areas. Buses and trains can’t be boarded due to a lack of visual, tactile and audio navigation aids, and inaccessible online booking platforms prevent access to education, employment and ultimately independence.
Access to Communication
Communication impacts disabled peoples access to education, health, leisure and employment. Specific issues include: use of social media, access to sign language interpreters, and use of speech/sign language to text/speech software in different languages.
Maintaining intimate Hygiene
Restricted upper and lower limb movement and sensory disability makes it difficult for men, women, boys and girls to maintain their hygiene independently. This can impact their confidence to leave their homes; preventing access to education, employment, social activities.
Access to Education
Access to education is not only about physical access. Education is restricted by inaccessible education material, prejudice and poverty. The lack of access to education limits livelihood options.
Accessibility & Safety of Physical Structures
Even with domestic legislation requiring new buildings to be accessible, most structures already built remain inaccessible. This restricts all aspects of disabled people's lives, especially when routes and entry to places is unsafe.
Travelling is often a challenge for disabled people, starting from inaccessible transport (cars, trains, aeroplanes) to lack of information or accessible destinations. Children with disabilities are often left out of activities when these are inaccessible.
Access to Information & Entertainment
Communication plays an important role in a person’s life. However, frequently for people who are deaf or hard of hearing, have low vision or limited hand functions – information is not accessible.
Access to Toilet (Public & Residential Space)
Access to toilets is one of the major concerns for disabled people, especially in rural or low-income areas where getting to and from a toilet is as challenging as using it. This can prevent children from accessing education and adults from gaining work. This is especially true for children and women with disabilities who are more vulnerable.
Access to rehabilitation and counselling services
While needs are huge, rehabilitation, counselling and psychological counselling services to cater for disabled people in rural areas are not integrated into the health system and therefore numbers of professionals are very limited. Local hospitals are not patient-friendly, have no outreach or follow up and a lack of repair or maintenance services means that many assistive devices are abandoned.
Finding Personal caregiver
Many disabled people will look for a assistant or PA to to help him/her in their daily lives. Finding qualified support, or information and resources is difficult.
Employability in Mainstream Professions
Even though some industries and individuals provide employment opportunities to disabled people, often disabled people get ‘stuck’ at the entry-level lacking clear routes to promotion and career growth.
Low-cost Lightweight Wheelchairs
There is a need for affordable, high quality wheelchairs which can be maintained locally and are supported by remote training. Wheelchairs need to be usable in a challengeing environment and should be fitted properly for an individual.