Fellow Since 2002
This profile was prepared when Ravichandra Raju was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2002.
The New Idea
Ravi has integrated the role of family and community members in the provision of appropriate services to disabled people. In India, citizen sector organizations and companies have offered aid to poor people with special needs but have not fully optimized these peoples' particular living situations. Ravi, however, draws on the experience of people living with disabled people to design more effective aids. By helping establish relationships between physical aid manufacturers, service providers, handicapped people, and community members, he maximizes efficiency, prepares young people for careers in rehabilitative services, and helps in the process of social integration. Moreover, Ravi's approach, which facilitates more direct contact with disabled people and their families, increases professionals' capacity to provide counseling, technical service, and more effective technology.