Although the governments have increasingly made all-round efforts to improve the lives and lifestyles of people with special needs or persons with disability (PWD) in recent years, as also the elderly, there is a lot that still remains to be done. Underlining the need for enormous investment and participation by the private sector, impact leadership champion and advocate Aspire Circle has come out with an insightful report advancing ten landmark ideas that can galvanise investment targeted at this segment and improve the lot of the PWDs in the country.
Titled “Investing for Impact: Disabilities, Accessibility & Inclusion”, the ten investment themes advanced in the report are as follows: Inclusive Hospitality, Travel & Tourism; Inclusive Financial Services; Accessible Mobility; Accessible Infrastructure; Equipment Manufacturing; Assisted Living; Digital Accessibility; Skill Development; Inclusive Education; and, Inclusive Online Marketplaces. The report has been put together by a team comprising some of the leading social entrepreneurs, impact investors, disability experts and academics.
This is the fourth in a series of reports produced by Aspire Circle, as part of a larger and overarching “Impact Future Project” to generate 100 Impact Ideas for India’s Inclusive Growth through India’s largest collaborative research initiative, involving over 200 experts, with the goal of shaping India’s Impact Economy.
“The return on disability movement is proving that it is not just moral, but attractive to serve people with disabilities and the elderly. Our top ten ideas will double annual DNI investments by 2030; taking the total market size to $11.4 billion, impacting 98 million Indians and creating 0.9 million jobs. The movement discards the notion that PWDs are a burden; asking society to save the pity party as evidence proves they are loyal employees and profitable customers.” said Mr. Amit Bhatia, Founder of Aspire Circle & Creator – Impact Future Project.
“At over 1 billion people, Persons with Disabilities are the single largest minority in the world (15% of world’s population). Yet there is no group as large as this which remains underserved and excluded from access to products, services and participation at large. This is largely due to inadequate understanding of important factors i.e. needs, market opportunity and Impact. IFP has rightfully identified the scale of opportunity in targeting this large underserved customer set and I am sure this effort will spur entrepreneurs and investors to look at this segment with a different lens.” said Shashaank Awasthi, Co-Founder V-shesh
India’s Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act 2016, Divyangjan Swavalamban Yojana and Deendayal Disabled Rehabilitation Schemes are some leading government initiatives. There is a need to elevate the Accessible India campaign to the same levels as Swachh Bharat Yojana and others.