Nothing is Impossible!

Perseverance, stubbornness, a willingness to learning, taking criticism positively, a hunger to succeed and achieve – all have led Pragathi to reach the pinnacle.

During the early days of Medical Transcription Training, she was so raw and innocent. Gradually, she grew stronger & slowly marched towards independence. At some point, she accepted Medical Transcription as her career and remained dedicated. She offered herself to be moulded. She would always apply any instruction or suggestion given and correct her errors without feeling frustrated. She developed the commitment and made use of every minute during her training.

She did very well during the OJT. She went to Hubli, her native place and tried for a job on her own. She went through four rounds of selection procedure and emerged successful. She got a job at LSI Info Tech, Hubli through her own efforts. She is the first and the only VI in that company. She has created a path for her juniors. With the help of the trainer there, she has metamorphosed into a perfect Medical Transcriptionist.

Today, she is capable of transcribing dictations of 15 doctors with 98% accuracy. Normally, atleast two years are required to reach this stage. But she has DONE IT in a span of about 5 months!

A million thanks to the trainer Mr. Ashraf, QA, LSI Info Tech who has moulded her. This would never happen without his efforts. The company had no prior knowledge about VIs, and no sensitization program had ever been conducted. Their courage and gesture too are highly commendable.

I had the privilege of watching this beautiful transformation in Pragathi. I always believe “NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE.” Pragathi has proved it. She has surpassed all limits. She is a perfect role model for MTVI. Three cheers to her.

MTVI is happening!

— Sujaya Ma’am

“There is a lot of love”

Haseena is 29 years old. Her lilting voice on the phone is interspersed with giggles as she tells us that she loves talking on her cell phone, since she doesn’t step out of the house often. She is a victim of acid attack – blind and disfigured.

It happened 10 years ago, and 35 surgeries later she says, “I have still not recovered.” There is no trace of bitterness as she optimistically adds, “Life seems like a question mark right now, but I am sure something will come up.”

She came to Enable India “ten years too late” (in her own words), but is so happy to have found a place where there is spontaneous friendship. She had to discontinue her mobility training as she developed severe eye infection and had to go to Hyderabad for yet another surgery. Even when her training was interrupted due to her infection, she took home some CDs and is learning English through them.

“I am better now, and am looking forward to going back to Enable India to join the computer training and learn about the new technologies for the visually impaired. Besides I just love being there as it is fun and am constantly learning something.”

Haseena was an independent working girl at 19 years of age when tragedy struck. The shock and trauma of such a heinous act has left only physical scars. She says, “I cry only when there is too much physical pain, I don’t cry for emotional pain.”

Though the incident took its toll in her personal life, as she was abandoned and ostracized by friends and relatives, she says that many new people came into her life to love and support her when they saw how she was battling for life. People from across the country called her, and 10 years later many remain good friends. It is this human spirit that gives Haseena hope and courage.

For Haseena, there is a new tomorrow everyday as she believes “there is a lot of love” in the world. She believes in the world she lives in, and more important, she believes in herself!

– Anju Khemani

A Message

Hi I am Prabal. I am a simple, shy and friendly person.

I come from a renowned family, consisting of four sons. I have no sisters. I grew up in Delhi and completed my education over there. I have worked in a BPO in Noida briefly.

When I entered Enable India, last year, I had some doubts about myself and my abilities. Enable India helped me to think in a different way. Gradually my inhibitions were removed and I found that there is another side to me. My daily interactions with my new friends, helped me in feeling relaxed, positive and more sensitive to those who have different abilities. In this journey, I slipped up occasionally, but with the help of the faculty at Enable India, I could recover again. The exposure that I had while doing my projects helped me in facing the world with more assurance and confidence.

My message to my new friends
I know that you will be feeling nervous when you begin your course. It is also possible that some, among you will be thinking whether you have come to the right place! However if you can manage to go through the daily activities with concentration and enthusiasm, there is every reason that you will find a new person hiding within you, just waiting to come out. I wish you the very best in your careers.

Thank you Prabal Choudhury, for that wonderful message. EnAble India wishes you all the best too!

Interview With Vidya

I finally managed to nail a perpetually busy Vidya on a Sunday evening, and asked her a few questions. Vidya is Program Manager – Employment at EnAble India and one of the pillars of the organization. Her answers threw light on what really makes EnAble India tick, and the qualities that makes it such a fantastic place to be at.

A little bit about your background

I have done MA in English Literature in open university. I am here at Enable India since 5 years now, and married to a low vision person. My low vision was diagnosed when I was 7-8 years old. Till the sixth standard I was ok, almost a topper in class, I was a good and an active student. Later when my vision deteriorated, it was difficult to understand what was happening. I had to rely on my brothers and mother. The school people were also very good. By the time I came to college, I was not understanding the low vision problem very well. I developed a kind of inferiority complex. Somehow I did my PUC because a couple of my school friends were also there. After my PUC, I was not confident enough to go out. I felt I couldn’t do anything independently. I had to sit at home thinking I had no option. I took BA through correspondence, but I didn’t get a proper coach. I went on searching for a coach. My parents also were confused, they didn’t know what to do – I am not blind, but I am not sighted either. My brother and mother couldn’t help at this stage. For three four years I was at home. I thought nothing could be done. I developed depression because I am the kind of person who always wants to keep herself occupied and do something meaningful. I went for music class and Reiki class just to keep myself occupied. My circle widened through that. My family was very protective also. They never used to send me alone. That’s how I grew up – lack of confidence, protectiveness, etc.

How did you first get to know about EnAble India?

I started learning Braille at Mathruchaya. I learnt about EnAble India through a former student of Enable India, who told me that I could learn computers. So I went to EnAble India, and I was so amazed when I was typing, that I could actually do something on the computers. I later went to NAB for a certificate course. One day I went to Mitra Jyothi, and they were looking for a project co-ordinator. I did a two month project. Then I was sent by Mitra Jyothi to Enable India to upgrade my skills so that I could be a good trainer. I was interacting on a daily basis with Shanti ma’am, and I strongly felt that this was the right place to be in. I didn’t know why I was feeling that, but I knew I wanted to be with Enable India. The feeling was mutual. So in 2004 I started working with Enable India.

How has EnAble India made a difference to your life?

Definitely. In many, many ways. I got the personal benefit of understanding the efficient ways of working on computers, the various ways of thinking, analyzing, etc. I was a typical fresher out of college. When Shanti ma’am used to talk to people, when she used to interact, and ask questions, at every single point of time I went on learning. I’m still learning, and I enjoyed those kind of learnings. Personally it helped me boost my confidence, improve my skill sets, identify my own potential, learn how to work with people, how to deal with anybody for that matter.
I found there is some meaning when you are talking to someone with lot of love. Any human being needs love. But the disability sector needs more love. Apart from keeping myself occupied and doing some meaningful work, at the end of the day, I always felt satisfied. I used to enjoy my work, there was lot of enjoyment. The most important thing that I always like about Enable India is that I can raise my voice and say that this is something that I want, or no, I don’t want that. There is a high comfort level. I was always a good leader. Here also, from day one to now, I’ve always been a leader. I can be myself and contribute with a lot of pride. It has made a tremendous difference, and completely changed my life and way of thinking.
I would like to say that it has affected my husband also. [laughs] I keep talking about positive thinking and so many things like that. All the learnings I get at Enable India, I share with him, and he also uses it, and it has also affected him in a very nice way. He was also low-vision, he was also a typical fresher, and when he joined his company, he also faced a lot of issues at the beginning. We used to have lots of discussions, and based on the learnings I had got, I used to tell him that no, this is not the way, do it this way. So, it has affected our personal life very well because the understanding between us is very good.

What is the one thing that you really like about EnAble India?

The one thing I really like about EnAble India is the unconditional love that we give. Recently when we were talking about values of EnAble India, I felt about the purity of heart. When I talk to any candidate, anyone, it is with a lot of purity, without having any judgement. That is something which touches me always. The other thing which I don’t want to miss out is the leadership. Leadership meaning that anyone can be himself/herself. Anyone can find the comfort in EnAble India.

What do you think the future holds for you and EnAble India?

[laughs] I have to think about this.
In terms of EnAble India growing, what I personally feel is that the process that we follow today has a lot of loopholes. Over a period of time, two-three years, I would like to see that the process properly working. Any small thing that we do, it affects the employment of anybody sitting anywhere. It could be a phone number, it could be anything. If I don’t do it right today, that affects a person. In terms of EnAble India’s growth, I would like to see all the processes working well. And the same thing should get implemented elsewhere. Today we are in Bangalore, with a small wing in Hyderabad. EnAble India has plans to start in other cities also. The same process should be mirrored in the other places also. In Bangalore we started with a very small setup, and there were so many challenges. I don’t want that to happen in the other places.
I would like EnAble India to set an example in the NGO sector – that an NGO can function so well with a small setup, but with the right attitude and the right energy that is required on a daily basis. One organization with twenty-thirty people cannot place 7 million candidates in the country. We may not be able to touch every single person. But I want to spread the word across the country that there is an organization who cares for you, there is this humanity here. It’s not just about getting trained or getting a job – there is a lot of importance given for humanity. I have seen, there is no respect for the disabled people – they are treated very, very badly. I would like to see EnAble India setting an example across the NGO sector, that wow – if you go to EnAble India, you feel comfort there. That is how I see the growth of EnAble India.
I am in the process of thinking about my growth in EnAble India. I am more action oriented. I would like to be more structured in what I’m doing. I have worked as Computer Trainer for two to two and a half years. Today, I am handling employment. Once the processes are in place, I would like to see myself in a different role. Maybe someone who can handle public relations. It also depends on what is required at that time.

Thank you, Vidya. It was a pleasure talking to you!

– Anitha Murthy