Our monthly meetup initiative is all geared to be launched in KOLKATA and we are hoping to inspire and get our friends with and without disabilities to attend them regularly to dissolve barriers and build bridges.
We also hope that our Kolkata friends and well-wishers will support us to successfully organize them. We appeal to them to consider supporting and attending these meetups.
Gives me great happiness to introduce our Monthly Meetup Initiative of our NGO Trinayani which works towards creating awareness about disabilities and empowering persons with disabilities.
Using the widest survey definition, it is estimated that there are 10 million disabled person in India. But for various reasons they remain ‘invisible’ to many of us. On the other hand, having a disability also contributes to feelings of social isolation and not being understood or acknowledged.
Trinayani’s Inclusive Monthly Meetup initiative for our friends with and without disabilities is to fill this need. Our monthly get togethers keeps the social lives of persons with disabilities active.
We organize these monthly get together with the simple motive of ‘being seen‘, dissolving barriers, having conversations and of course, celebrating with food, cinema, music and outings.
We launched this initiative in Mumbai in May 2017 and have successfully organized regular monthly meets since then, the 15th meetup was held this month on 21st July 2018 at Dosti House inside US Consulate General Mumbai where we screened a Documentary followed by a Q & A.
Our meetup initiative has provided a space for ALL to come forth, mingle together and return more aware. The meetups facilitate people coming together in spite of the challenges, and together sharing suggestions for supporting each other in a welcoming, fun filled, joyful, non-judgmental and safe environment.
It has been challenging to source venues accessible for our wheelchair user friends in Mumbai and to come up with meetup ideas to keep the interest going for both our disabled and non-disabled friends, however here are some details of a few of our meetups.
Our 1st Inclusive Monthly meet up was a Musical evening, held on the 21st of May from 4 to 7 pm at St Pauls Media where 110 persons with and without disabilities registered, among them were persons who were deaf, blind, wheelchair users, adults with autism, adults who had epilepsy, senior citizens, non-disabled friends and professionals from other ngos and the disability sector and our friends from the LGBTQ community. Two musicians from our Inclusive music band Pehli Baarish was in attendance. Tere were performances were Indian Idol finalists, Muskesh Pancholi, Emon Chatterjee and singer Manjima Goswami. Mumbai Drum Circle gave us a 25 min performance with a 7 member strong band. Veteran actress Tanujaji graciously participated in song and dance routine. Enjoy the pictures of our 1st Monthly Meet up https://goo.gl/photos/5SQyqwPsrvUmjSTQ9
The 2nd Monthly Meet up was held on the 18h of June from 3 to 6 pm at RIMS International School at Andheri West. We organized Antakshari, professionally conducted by Mr Sohail Mohammed. There are 140 attendees and the winning team were awarded certificates and gift hampers.
The 3rd Monthly meet up was held on the 23rd of July at Adapt Bandra west. Seventeen Events Training and Promotions Team designed fun filled One mIn games for all played in teams. https://photos.app.goo.gl/hxejW0L7Vm1ix4Vn1
The 4th Meet up took place on the 20th August from 2.30 to 6.30 pm, once again supported by Team Seventeen events who organized Film Scene creating followed by Bollywood quiz. https://photos.app.goo.gl/pBZCrQBDZc8moMNu2
For our September monthly meetup which was 5th in our series held on 24th we decided to host the very popular Dandiya for our friends, some of whom would have stepped out for the Garba dance for the first time in their lives. Our friend Arvind Prabhoo very graciously supported us by providing the Prabodhan Thakrey Sports Swimming Complex Basement for the event and also sponsored the refreshment for all. A professional Dj provided the much needed music for all to have fun. Once again persons having different disabilities and non-disabled friends were present. We also had Deaf Sign language reporters from the Newzhook team covering the event. Dipti Doshi and Col Sundaram. https://photos.app.goo.gl/HtuVL0wgHI52lUWd2
For our 6th Monthly Meetup on 29th October we decided to step out and watch a film together. So Golmaal 2 screening at Gossip theatre in Bandra west which is 50 percent accessible for our wheelchair user friends was chosen as the film and venue. Over coffee and samosa all enjoy the film. https://photos.app.goo.gl/l2LBHX9HsPenrfdA2
With the commencement of the Racing season in Mumbai, supported by our friend Mr Bergis Desai the 7th Monthly Meet up was held at the Mahalakshmi Racecourse Worli on the 26th November. A first time for many of our friends with disabilities at the Course and many tried their hand at betting. https://photos.app.goo.gl/rvlMO0LNXfRg4Km23
To celebrate Human Rights Day on the 10th of December, our 8th Monthly Meetup was made possible by an invite by the GVK International Airport for a Museum Tour inside the Airport a group of 20. https://photos.app.goo.gl/jvB1Aw8yR08nU7Yi1
For our 9th Monthly meetup on 13th January 2018 we received support from RISE INFINITY and hired the MIG Club hall and invited Singer Actor Piloo Vidyarthi and veteran Bengali actor Shakuntalal Barua.. with live music by Young Adults with autism from C Sharp Special Kids World and a refreshing talk by Founder BarrierBreak Shilpi Kapoor. https://photos.app.goo.gl/B6bnVTP6U5l5FqCy1
Everyone tried their hand at singing at the Karaoke tracks at our 10th Inclusive Monthly meetup supported by Kala Sridhar of ARK EVENTS on 25th Feb, 2018. https://photos.app.goo.gl/vCQydzgWJ5CFoIpH2
Sushant Mysorekar from BRAIN GYM conducted a session for our meetup members as part of out 11th Meetup on 31st March 2018. https://photos.app.goo.gl/AMxwIO2Hs3uvCzq52
Our 12th Inclusive Monthly Meetup was a refreshing Mixology session conducted by ace mixologist Shatbhi Basu at Chillis American Grill and Bar. https://photos.app.goo.gl/fJmeViV77ZxUKxzn1
On a slightly thought provoking note the 13th meetup was conducted by Regression therapist Lopa de and a session on Soul Thumka was conducted by Ritika Sahni https://photos.app.goo.gl/jxLkxngVDLGPFXVW9
Our 14th meetup to be held in July sadly had to be cancelled due to Mumbai rains on the day of the meetup.
15th Meetup was held at Dosti House, inside US consulate general Mumbai, wherein we screened the documentary “Becoming Bulletproof” a film with the entire case of actors with disabilities. https://photos.app.goo.gl/QW6oSa6gWtz3uCxZA
We have some members who have not missed a single meetup. But for us what is exciting is that every meetup sees new faces leading to new conversations and learning new stories.
In the future we plan to include empowering talks and sessions and stories but fun first and foremost, we want to have since from experience we know how much a serious condition affects ones social life. We feel that as important as discussions are, so is keeping our social lives active.
In each Monthly get together we also urge our friends to share their suggestions for Meet-Ups with us, we’re open to anything and everything within reason.
THE IDEA IS TO EXPLORE THE FACT THAT WHEN LIKE-MINDED, BRIGHT, BEAUTIFUL INDIVIDUALS MEET, MAGIC CAN HAPPEN.