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Tata Power and NIEPID collaborate to launch Neurodiversity platform

March 2, 2024 11:51 am

Tata Power and NIEPID collaborate to launch Neurodiversity platform
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Innovative digital platform aims to bridge gaps in support for individuals with neurodiverse conditions.

Tata Power Community Development Trust (TPCDT), the CSR arm of Tata Power renowned for its commitment to community development, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the National Institute for the Empowerment of Persons with Intellectual Disabilities (NIEPID), under the aegis of MSJE. The collaboration marks the launch and pilot-testing of an innovative digital Neurodiversity Platform, unveiled at the National Purple Fest held at Rashtrapati Bhawan, Delhi, recently. Developed under the Pay Attention initiative and implemented by Tata Elxsi, this platform, co-curated by NIEPID and TPCDT, serves as an integrated hub for neurodiversity support in India.

Recognizing the prevalence of Autism Spectrum affecting 1 in 100 children, the Pay Attention initiative addresses the critical need for a comprehensive support ecosystem. As per the 2021 Rehabilitation Council of India report, there are only 1.2 lakh special educators in India, largely concentrated in 8 states, resulting in a ratio of 1:167 special educators to children, leading to a large gap in the support ecosystem. Pay Attention brings together diverse stakeholders, bridging awareness and access gaps in families, institutions, regions, resources, technology, and expert networks. The digital platform, a key component of the Pay Attention initiative, aims to interconnect and amplify the reach of special centers, professionals, and institutions for parents, caregivers, public workers, volunteers, and individuals. It envisions the transformation of early diagnosis and care through deeper engagement with community initiatives and working jointly with the government to promote new practices and a global interface in the space. The platform, to be launched by March 24, will complete pilot testing with 5000 users by August 24. Post which, the platform will be open for public use.

“As a part of GOI’s thrust on Public-Private-Partnerships, we are delighted to collaborate with the Tata Power Trust to introduce the pioneering India Neurodiversity Platform. This phygital initiative aims to facilitate early diagnosis, home care, and helpline for the neurodiverse; leveraging digital technology and enabling outreach and accessibility across geographies. With Tata Group’s values in volunteering and philanthropy, I’m optimistic that this endeavor will grow into a broader synergy for inclusivity – both in society and industry,” said Rajesh Aggarwal, Secretary, Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment.

Reiterating Tata Power’s philosophy, Himal Tewari, CHRO, and Chief – CSR & Sustainability, shared, “Tata Power is honored to be a part of the National Purple Fest, in continuation of the work we are doing to further inclusivity with a specific focus on neuro-diversity. Tata Power Trust’s partnership with NIEPID under the aegis of MSJE to launch India Neurodiversity Platform marks a significant leap in the journey to bridge access gaps and foster supportive ecosystems for all. We have been building our ‘Pay Attention’ program and hope with this platform, it will reach scale and have a larger impact on those who need it the most. At Tata Power, we enable environments within and across our communities for diverse individuals to help them maximize their abilities, thrive, and contribute meaningfully to society.”

Since its 2022 launch by N Chandrasekharan, Tata Group Chairman, and Dr. Praveer Sinha, CEO& MD, Tata Power, the ‘Pay Attention’ initiative has trained over 2000 public workers, 300 caregivers, and practitioners. Additionally, 10,000 citizens and volunteers have been reached through street plays, videos, and workshops. The web portal and toll-free helpline (18002099488) provide nationwide access to high-quality home care learning material and live support. Currently, Pay Attention connects over 250 NGOs, corporates, and government bodies in neurodiversity, offering services to numerous children.

At Amrit Udhyan, The National Purple Fest, TPCDT engaged with 10,000 participants raising awareness of neurodiversity. The fest featured diverse activities empowering individuals with disabilities. Tata Power’s Pay Attention stall provided a holistic sensory experience with activities like sensory walls, music therapy, Lego play, and doodling art corners. The event also highlighted Tata Power’s Adhikaar initiative, focused on disseminating information about disability schemes.

During the fest, Tata Power, with Pay Attention partners Sunday Bricks, and Victory Arts Foundation, organized sessions including dance, movement therapy, flash mobs, and street plays. Workshops on planting and ceramic-making, in collaboration with NASEOH, INDIA, drew large participation. The event also saw attendance from students and ANM partners from Pay Attention supported grassroot regions like Ahmednagar, Tirunalveli, and Jamshedpur along with representatives from Tata Group companies including Air India, Croma, Titan, IHCL promoting empowerment, inclusivity, and diversity.

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