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Tuesday, April 16, 2024

American India Foundation and Government of India Commemorate ‘Purple Fest’ – an Inclusive Festival for Persons with Disabilities at Rashtrapati Bhavan

IndiaAmerican India Foundation and Government of India Commemorate 'Purple Fest' - an Inclusive Festival for Persons with Disabilities at Rashtrapati Bhavan

The American India Foundation (AIF), renowned for its 23-year journey of catalyzing social and economic change in India, co-sponsored the ‘Purple Fest’ held at Rashtrapati Bhavan, New Delhi, the official residence of the President of India. Organized by the Department for Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD), Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India, this distinguished event attracted over 10,000 Persons with Disabilities (PwDs) and numerous civil society organizations. The fest, graced by the Hon’ble President of India Smt. Droupadi Murmu and esteemed Ministers of DEPwD, celebrated inclusivity and the power of partnerships.

This groundbreaking festival underscored India’s commitment to inclusivity, education, and technological innovation, serving as a platform to raise awareness about the inclusion of PwDs in all spheres of society, workplaces, and the economy, paving the way for a future of equal opportunities and rights for all.

The ‘Purple Fest’ represents an extension of AIF’s vision to usher in a new era of opportunity and empowerment for PwDs in India. In a historic partnership with DEPwD on the World Day of Social Justice, AIF signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to double the number of PwDs in the formal workforce, creating 100,000 new jobs by 2030 through its flagship program, Ability Based Livelihood Empowerment (ABLE).

Under ABLE, AIF has empowered over 18,000 PwDs with training and facilitated employment for more than 10,000, collaborating with over 1,800 inclusive employers. Additionally, AIF announced a series of 25 job fairs across 25 cities in India to bridge the gap between demand and supply of employment opportunities for PwDs.

Mr. Rajesh Agarwal, IAS, Secretary, DEPwD, expressed enthusiasm about the association with AIF, aiming to make disability inclusion more vibrant and engaging. Mr. Matthew Joseph, Country Director of AIF, emphasized the organization’s commitment to fostering empowerment and inclusion of PwDs in the formal workforce, reiterating the belief in a world where disability doesn’t define one’s ability.

The ‘Purple Fest – Delhi 2024’ witnessed vibrant cultural performances by PwDs, live experience zones, and consultative workshops, showcasing India’s diversity, inclusivity, and empowerment on a global platform.

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