Get-hooked November 28, 2020
Young disability advocates voice their stories to spread awareness in this 2021 calendar
From India’s first male model with autism Pranav Bakhshi to chronic illness advocate Anubha Mahajan there is much to look forward to in this new calendar for 2021 featuring the emerging voices in the disability space.
They are young, attractive, and upfront about their disability which makes them great role models for the case of inclusion.
Now they have come together in a calendar for 2021 to share their journeys and spread awareness about the need to empower the community. The calendar theme is Oddity: Don’t Bend, Don’t Blend ad the concept designers are Rishabh Dahiya and Purva Mittal.
“I have spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) and initially the idea was to focus on people with SMA”, says Purva. “The idea then evolved to featuring people with different disabilities as they go about with day-to-day struggles”.
All disabilities represented
The 12 role models featured in the calendar includes a person on the autism spectrum, acid attack survivor as well as a chronic illness advocate.
2020 has been a challenging and strenuous year for all of us. I wanted to usher 2021 with a slight twist. Our calendar, Oddity, wants to celebrate disability in all forms. We want to promote acceptability in our society. The idea is to show that we too want to dress well and look good. We are looking at much more than simply getting basic needs fulfilled.- Purva Mittal, Concept Designer
The calendar Willa allow the role models to spread awareness regarding their disability and the efforts they are making to spread awareness.
“We intend to raise funds and distribute them to organisations working for the betterment of people with disabilities. The calendar will be launched on 3 December to commemorate International Disability Day.”, says Purva.
Fellow concept designer Rishabh Dahiya calls the shoot exhilarating but nerve wracking. “I was anxious about how to pull the shoot off amidst the pandemic. We wanted to create a safe environment for all our guest models. II want the calendar to exhibit diversity in disability and promote inclusivity”.
Manisha Prajapati, a burn survivor and model adds, “I want to encourage people to not limit themselves to their beauty. The true beauty resides in your strength and character. Through this calendar I want to spread the message of #DontBend #DontBlend.”
Among the other models to be featured are Faisal Ashraf, a bike tinkerer, field researcher, and employment counsellor, and Soniya Malik a double amputee.