The Enable Makeathon is a project initiated by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and its partners to help create new assistive devices for persons with disabilities living in rural areas across the world. It is motivated by the spirit of broad collaboration with the government, the private sector, the academia as well as other interested individuals. It is a 60-day programme by the end of which participants – including technology and design experts, persons with disabilities and mentors – would have developed solutions and products for persons with disabilities in the form of prototypes.
Shri Mukesh Jain, Joint Secretary, Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, briefed the press on the ministry’s decision to partner with ICRC on this initiative. Further he commended the organization for initiating the Enable Makeathon, saying his Ministry wants “to engage with all the 138 entrants in the competition and connect them with those who can help develop their ideas.” He suggested that these ideas could come from solutions that could contribute to helping society diminish the three barriers (physical barriers, social barriers and psychological barriers) which hinder persons with disabilities from attaining their full potential.
At the event, Robertangelo Ciccone, the ICRC’s Physical Rehabilitation Programme Manager explained the work of the ICRC with persons with disabilities around the world, while Nihal Kashinath of IoT Bangalore and Pavan Kumar of Workbench Projects—both partners of the ICRC, informed the media that at the end of the close of entries, as many as 138 participants had registered — 84 of which are from India.