Enabling Access for the Mentally Challenged (India)

The number of children with mental challenges is large and growing at an alarming rate in India. Approximately 1% of children have an Autism Spectrum Disorder, while an estimated 2-5% have an auditory processing disorder. Such children face obstacles to communication, and this makes it more difficult for doctors to treat them and for teachers to teach them. Poor communication also leads to unnecessary friction in social interaction.

Professor Arun Mehta and his students have for some years been exploring the use of information and communication technology (ICT) as a new sort of prosthesis that allows children to overcome obstacles to communication.

This grant will help a small group of children overcome serious difficulties through the judicious use of ICTs and, in the process, validate a low-cost methodology for helping children with mental challenges learn and communicate better. It is expected that the documentation will help convince governments that such an intervention is cost-effective and brings measurable benefit to the lives of children with mental challenges.

Project ID


Project status


Start Date

Friday, September 23, 2011

End Date

Monday, October 29, 2012


12 months

IDRC Officer

Sayo, Phet

Total funding

CA$ 26,000


India, Far East Asia, Philippines, Thailand, Central Asia, South Asia


Networked Economies

Project Leader

Arun Mehta


Bidirectional Access Promotion Society

Institution Country


Institution Website