Get-hooked May 25, 2021
Teenager with learning disability makes modelling debut in Amazon’s latest advertisement campaign
Just 16 years old, Tarini Chadha is enjoying her moment in the spotlight. Tarini, who has a learning disability, is the face of a newly launched Amazon disability advertisement campaign to mark Amazon Alexa’s third anniversary celebrations in India. The campaign highlights the many ways in which Alexa is being used by people of different disability types.
Like most 16 year olds, Tarini Chadha loves to dress up and take selfies. This Gurugram teenager with a learning disability is a natural before the camera and she has taken that a giant step further.
Tarini is the face of Amazon India’s latest disability advertisement campaign to marks Alexa’s third anniversary in India. Advertisements featuring disabled people in a positive light are rare in India. The Alexa campaign aims to highlight the many ways in which it is helping disabled people in India.
Disability ad marks 3 years of Alexa in India
“We have seen customers with different accessibility needs – from people who are blind, to people with limited mobility, to older adults using Alexa in their daily lives and the response has been very humbling”, said an Amazon India spokesperson to Newz Hook. “With Alexa, we’re focused on universal design – building features and services that can be used and accessed by the widest range of people with varying abilities”.
Being a part of the Amazon Alexa disability ad campaign seems an organic outcome says Tarini’s family. “Alexa is an integral part of Tarini’s life”, says her mother Astha Chadha. “We have taught her activities of daily life skills like putting up an alarm, ordering her stuff and how to track that through Alexa. Her TV has an Amazon Fire Stick, which is connected to Alexa, so she gives all the commands, whether it is to change the channel or putting on her favourite show or movie, to Alexa”.
Amazon India asked Tarini to share these details in a short video. The rest, as they say, is history.
Watch the Amazon Alexa ad here:
Being in the spotlight is hard for any teenager. Given her disability, the challenges were greater for Tarini. She was able to overcome them as her parents made sure Tarini had plenty of opportunities to socialise. Tarini loves the camera but being a part of a professional shoot was another challenge altogether.
Disabled people highlight benefits of Alexa
“The creative team was sensitised to the special needs of the user and they we worked together to highlight how Alexa helps everyday”, said the Amazon India spokesperson. At the shoot site, the crew was kept to a minimum to make sure Tarini was comfortable. There was one person assigned to give her instructions. “She was quite comfortable but we had our share of struggles giving re-takes and changing clothes”, says Astha. “That day we realised that sometimes we underestimate our child and how wrong it is to categorise them. Your child’s diagnosis is not a label so never behave accordingly”.
We asked Tarini how she kept her cool during such a long and exhausting process.
I told myself constantly, ‘Tarini, you can do it’. I am always telling myself to stretch my limits and do better. I did that while shooting for the advertisement too. – Tarini Chadha, Amazon Alexa model
The opportunity to be a part of Amazon Alexa’s latest disability ad campaign was thanks to Atypical Advantage, India’s first career platform for person with disabilities. “The agency was looking for disabled people who were great with using Alexa devices”, says Vineet Saraiwala, Founder, Atypical Advantage. “They were extremely happy with Tarini and her understanding of how to operate Amazon Alexa. The confidence, enthusiasm and a sense of adventure was what made her stand apart”.
Diagnosis of disability
Tarini’s learning disability was diagnosed when she was four years old. Her parents were initially told she had ADHD which was later changed to a learning disability. However, all these are just labels for her proud parents.
“Of course she is delayed for her age but honestly speaking we were never bothered about her diagnosis so we never took interest in that”, says Astha. “She is a wonderful observer with an amazing visual memory”.
Apart from making a mark as a disabled model for a top brand, Tarini has many other achievements. She has won medals for playing softball and dabbles in cooking. Among her future goals is to drive a Ferrari and launch her own YouTube channel. That way she gets to combine her creative skills with her love for the camera.
Watch in Sign Language
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