Global Reach: Grantee Partners

Sol’s Assessment and Remedial Center (Sol’s ARC)


Anchored in data from 2011 census of India, the State of Education Report for India: Children with Disabilities (2019) highlights that one fourth of the young people between 5 – 19 years of age with disabilities do not go to any educational institution. Conservative estimates from the World Bank report suggests that 70-100 million persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities (PwIDDs) live in India. Up to 3% of India’s 1.3 billion population lives with some form of developmental or intellectual disability and over 12% of Indian children aged two to nine years have neurodevelopmental disorders. As they grow older, they are stigmatized and are considered less deserving of education and employment. This impacts their ability to achieve their full potential (Dasra, 2019).

According to a report published by the National Centre for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People (NCPEDP) on the Status of Persons with Disabilities in India, during the COVID19 crisis access to healthcare and medical aid, especially among those with comorbidities such as diabetes and mental health illnesses, was obstructed, limited, or abruptly stopped putting them at a greater risk. 67% of PwIDDs interviewed had no access to doorstep delivery of essentials by the government. Financial challenges owing to job loss of self and/or family members, increase in violence/abuse due to injustices amplified because of the COVID crisis have further exacerbated psychosocial issues faced by PwIDDs. According to EMpower’s ‘COVID: In Her Voice’ report too disabled girls are experiencing heightened challenges. ‘I have become more dependent on my parents this year due to the lockdown’, a respondent shared.


Sol’s ARC was founded in 2003 by Sonali Saini, a special educator by qualification, with a mission to improve learning outcomes by developing education solutions to ensure every last child in the classroom, learns. Its pedagogy and tech-based tools enable systemic change thereby achieving better learning outcomes, which are scalable and deployed through partnerships with governments, NGOs, multilateral, and bi-lateral agencies. The young people Sol’s ARC works with belong to socio-economically disadvantaged groups (SEDGs) with vulnerabilities which include gender, disability, mental health, socio-economic status, caste, and minority religions etc. 

Current Grant:

EMpower's first grant to Sol’s ARC will support 60 young people (18-30) from low-resource communities, living with autism and intellectual disabilities (75% young men, 25% young women) to receive training in vocational as well as employability skills through a blended approach enabled by a digital learning platform, resulting in a 70% placement rate. This will be enabled through direct interventions as well as partnerships with six NGOs to train young people and with industry partners to map two new sectors, create standardised curriculum, and sensitise corporate on hiring and retaining trained youth living with autism and intellectual disabilities.

You can support our work with Sol’s Assessment and Remedial Center (Sol’s ARC) and our other grantee partners.

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