May 15th 2016, was a highly anticipated day for us at Diya. It was finally the day of the TCS World 10 K marathon! We had trainees and trainers as participants in different categories of the race.
This year’s edition was an extremely special one for us as we had one of our trainees BhakyaRaj take part in the Open 10 K for the first time. BhakyaRaj, our 31 year old trainee at Diya Innovations (The for profit social enterprise that ensures supported employment opportunities for the differently abled), works in the Candle Unit at Diya. He is an integral part of the production processes from melting wax to putting finishing touches on the products. He practised long and hard for the marathon. He was extremely excited to be the sole participant among the trainees at the Open 10 K. Bhakya completed his very first 10 K marathon in 1 hour 20 mins!!! It was indeed a proud moment for all of us at Diya.
Another factor that made this year’s TCS World 10 K special was the participation of Radio One 94.3 FM. We were extremely lucky to have MJ Pandit Prithvi run for Diya at the Open 10 K. Radio One was very supportive in spreading awareness on air about adults with Intellectual Challenges, Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy and Autism as well as the work we do at Diya. They also had a contest in which winners got the opportunity to run for Diya and with MJ Pandit Prithvi. The best part of the contest was that Radio One raised the equivalent amount of the registration fee as a donation towards Diya! We had 20 Radio One listeners running for us.
Gul Mohammed Akbar, the Race Director of the Bangalore Midnight Marathon, also supported us by being a participant in the Open 10 K. We, at Diya, thank him the support he has shown us.
We also had support in the form of runners from the corporate companies Emids and Aruba. Emids, a healthcare IT service provider, had 26 employees that ran for Diya and Aruba, an IT company, had 26 employees that supported us too.
Some of our trainees and trainers were participants in the Majja Run and the Champions with Disability race. Our trainees had fun as there was a lot of music and excitement in the air. We also had Jacqueline Colaco, Diya’s staunch supporter, as a participant in the Champions with Disability race running for Diya. Jacqueline Colaco has consistently been the highest fundraiser for Diya. Her constant support and encouragement is something we at Diya value tremendously.
Diya takes this opportunity to thank our friends, donors and benefactors for their support and generosity. You reaching out to us shows us your caring and belief in the potential of the intellectually challenged to go beyond what they perceive as their limitations. We look forward to your continued support.