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Organisation Overview

Adventures Beyond Barriers Foundation (ABBF) is a not-for-profit, based out of Pune, India, that promotes inclusivity. Through adaptive adventure and outdoor sport initiatives and collaborations, ABBF provides visibility for Persons with Disability (PwD). ABBF strives to shatter social stereotypes around disability and promotes an environment of openness, and empathy. ABBF organizes a range of adventure activities including marathons, tandem cycling, scuba diving, paragliding, and mountaineering.

TARGET BENEFECIARIES

  • ABBF works with persons across different types of disabilities and able bodied individuals. These folks lack the opportunity and the access to recreation, one way of doing which is Adventure sport.
  • Our events see the participation of individuals from all walks of life. These individuals come from well off as well as underprivileged backgrounds. ABBF gives them a platform irrespective of who they are and what disability they have to enjoy outdoor activities in a safe and empathetic environment.
  • ABBF brings expertise and capability to make sure both communities, PWDs and able bodied people, not just participate but also interact with each other. This interaction is key to understanding each other’s worlds and building empathy.
  • ABBF does not work with people with mental retardation or people who have suffered brain injuries, since paying heed to and understanding instructions is important for outdoor adventures programs.

Impact

Sport is merely a tool for what we wish to achieve. We want to provide Persons with Disability with equal opportunities and ABBF has set a precedent in the field of accessible adventure sports in India.

Touching Lives... Till date, ABBF has touched the lives of close to 15,000 people across both communities.

Our notable events for building equality and empathy include:

  1. M2K – An yearly Manali to Khardung La tandem cycling expedition.
  2. India’s 1st Open Water SCUBA Diving Event for PwDs.
  3. India’s 1st paramotoring event for PwDs.
  4. Participation in popular marathons across the country.
  5. One of the first inclusive climbs to the top of Kilimanjaro, in Tanzania.

The following qualitative and organic impact has been documented from feedback and experiences post events:

  1. Increase in self confidence, and self esteem.
  2. Acceptance of self with disability.
  3. Shifts in societal attitudes about what PwDs can or cannot do.
  4. Development of an inclusive mindset as a result of seeing PwDs in action first hand.
  5. Better employment opportunities for PwDs and the building of accessible spaces.

USP's

Competency to work across disabilities and facilitate interaction between communities

Global reach to mobilize expertise to organize adventure activities especially for PwDs

Outdoor Sports Covered

Trekking

Mountaineering & Trekking

We conduct frequent inclusive treks for PwDs and able-bodied individuals in and around Pune. We engage with corporates in Inclusion and Diversity activities by designing outdoor sensitization programs. As a part of these programs, employees are taken on inclusive treks alongside PwDs and we engage them in conversations around inclusion and disability. The activity combats sedentarisation of the PwDs as well as takes care of their recreation, and professional integration. Getting a chance to communicate with the coporate works as a confidence booster.

Cycling

Cycling

M2K, Deccan Cliffhanger, & Tour of Nilgiris - These annual inclusive tandem cycling expeditions are one of the highlight events of ABBF. People from across the globe who want to champion the cause of inclusion and experience the power of play, participate in our tandem cycling events.

Scuba Diving

Scuba Diving

ABBF organized India’s 1st Open Water SCUBA Diving Event for Persons with Disability. Our scuba diving events have seen people with cerebral palsy, and paraplegia participate and enjoy the freedom that being in water gives. We have certified scuba diving instructors who conduct and facilitate each event, ensuring utmost safety at all times.

Marathons

Marathons

Amputees, blind, and visually impaired participants have gone on to become runners and then ambassadors of ABBF, most recent example being the Pune Half Marathon, which took place on Oct. 7th, 2018.

Paragliding

Paragliding

ABBF hosted India’s 1st paramotoring event for PwDs with Chandigarh Rehabilitation Centre in 2016. Thereafter several PwDs in batches of twos and threes have taken wing by paragliding in locations around Pune.

ABBF Verticals

“We don’t believe in the words cannot and impossible.”

Each ABBF vertical in its work area bears testimony to the fact that it is not disability that is a problem, but the social stereotypes and lack of accessibility that PwDs have to face at every step that are the major barriers. In keeping with this, the verticals have been arranged as follows:

For the Individual – Facilitating inclusion by having individuals – PwDs as well as able bodied – participate in sport events organized by ABBF. These events are made even more powerful in the way they draw out stories of achievement, celebrate small wins and treat every participant like family. They facilities and logistics in the events are particularly sensitive to needs of the PwDs.

For the Corporate – Playing out the diversity and inclusion agenda entirely by bringing together corporate staff across levels and people with diverse disabilities at outdoor sport events. These can range from simple one day treks to marathons to overnight camps. With ABBF at the helm, these events no longer are about just doing the activity, but also about shattering misconceptions, revelations and accepting disability.

Research - Adventure activities as catalysts – It is well known that sport binds people to one another like nothing can. It is a fantastic medium therefore, to use in the disability space. While we organize our sport activities, we also want to measure the impact, design new activities modify existing ones for better impact and also set goal of what we want to achieve for better inclusion. This vertical focuses in data gathering, data analysis, white papers, conferences, presenting papers and studies, surveys and academic research.

Skill Building – Skill building is the most tangible way of ensuring our work is helping our target beneficiaries. This vertical builds on the sports activities where individuals, corporates and PwDs participate. Bringing PwDs into the mainstream and facilitating interaction through ice breakers, games, multi-player activity and so on, enables them to be articulate, share stories assertively and does wonders to their confidence levels. Besides these, we nurture talent that we spot among PwDs by allowing those individuals to demonstrate their skills to corporates.

Key Sources of Finance

Corporate Sponsors
Individual Donors
Event Donors

Our Event Donors support us through channels like Unitedway, Letz change, Tata Mumbai Marathon, Airtel Hyderabad Marathon, Pune Running Beyond Myself marathon, Pune Road Runners marathon, GoQuii etc.

How Funding Helps

  1. Lack of acceptance of PwDs in mainstream.
  2. Lack of inclusion of PwDs due to misconceptions about their disability as well as ability.
  3. Lack of dialogue in turn leading to low awareness about disability.
  4. Lack of awareness leading to lack of empathy.
  1. Create opportunities for dialogue through sport where people are most receptive and when learning happens unintentionally.
  2. Raise awareness about disability among corporates and individuals through this sport based interaction.
  3. Through interaction build empathy.
  4. Open doors of opportunity for PwDs to enhance skills they have obtained in the sport activities.
  5. Create a fellowship program to build role models among PwDs.

Funds can help with several of the following:

  1. Logistical arrangements for participation by PwDs.
  2. Effective campaigning on social media to raise awareness.
  3. Hiring expertise to ensure safety of participants during sports activities.
  4. Administrative expenses.
  5. Sponsoring participation of PwDs in activities when their financial background prevents them from participation.
  6. Procuring equipment that PwDs can use for activities, like Tandem cycles.
  7. Advocacy for better access infrastructure for PwDs.
  • Noting feedback scores from every event to monitor event quality and add improvements.
  • Set standards in procedures when working with PwDs for different sports through compliance reports.
  • Document all events through photos and video for interaction & facilitation analysis and study.
  • Monitor activity impact over a period of time, analyze data and course correct as required.
  • Establish how many role models we’ve been able to nurture over time.
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