The specially abled often face a large gap between what they get and what they deserve. With families treating them as liabilities or cocooning them from the real world, organisations too are skeptical about hiring them, due to a perceived lack of skill-sets. Youth4Jobs is an NGO in Vizag that addresses this problem and provides them with an equal standing. Bringing them from the confines of limited opportunities, they train them with skills, towards self-reliance.
Youth4jobs started in Delhi a decade ago. Reaching out to both rural and urban segments, they identified specially abled youth with locomotor, speech impairment and vision disabilities, and started training them. Their sixty-day training programme identifies youth, trains them to suit certain job sectors and then provides employment. Today, with multiple centers in many cities, the NGO is reaching out to influence many lives.
The Vizag center is relatively recent and started two years ago at Gajuwaka in Vizag. Currently located on MVP Double Road, the team here works by first screening youth from both urban and rural areas. The selected youth are enrolled in the course which includes training, free meals and free accommodation, followed by job placement. Of the over 350 students they have trained in the city, many have been recruited, both locally and non locally, while some have gone for higher education as well. Jobs are usually provided in the retail sector, BPO and hotel industry.
Sharing that both boys and girls benefit from the programme, job-oriented skill-training is offered after an initial assessment. Matching the candidate to their job-suitability is followed up by requisite training. Along with specialized technical classes on BPO and data entry work, common classes of English speaking and grooming are also undertaken.
In fact, when a company hires someone from Youth4Jobs, a support member goes along to help the person get adjusted to the company’s environment and understand its rules. The company staff is also provided awareness training on both professional and local sign language. Once a student completes the course here, the NGO tracks their progress and tries to help in solving problems.
The challenges, however, are many. While it is tough to identify the people in need, motivating them and mobilising them to join is difficult too. Also, while corporates in bigger cities are sensitised towards hiring the disabled, such is not the case in the city as yet.
The specially abled aren’t a burden to any company, but an asset to them, share the members of Youth4Jobs. Their long-term retention is greater, and with options for them being lesser, they usually stick to the companies they’re part of. Unlike other employees, the physically-challenged have a greater degree of patience to sit and work at their stations for longer periods of time. Working with the objective of creating an inclusive workforce, Youth4jobs gives the ‘special’ people an equal platform.
Volunteers are encouraged to help with either their time or donations. Contact Ramesh Babu at 7013040186 or visit www.youth4jobs.org.