Nishtha N. Thaker E-mail id firstname.lastname@example.org Always think of people whose suffering is far worse than yours and live the life given to you in the best possible manner. …Nishtha The Early Years Nishtha was born on 23 December, 1973 in Raipur, Chhatisgarh. She was brought up in Junagadh, Gujarat. She was struck with muscular dystrophy in her childhood, and became aware of her malady when she was about eleven years old. At that time, she was examined by an orthopaedic surgeon in Junagadh. In 1985, Dr. B.S. Singhal of Bombay Hospital, Mumbai, diagnosed Nishtha’s case as a rare form of Charcot Mary’s tooth. However, all the medicines and treatments prescribed were of no avail. She had difficulty understanding her ailment and wondered if any cure existed. Tired of all the medicines she was taking, she decided, one day, to stop all of them and turned instead to home remedies and traditional work outs. Soon after, disaster struck again – Nishtha was diagnosed with Tuberculosis. The treatment and the medicines weakened her to such an extent that she could attend to her tasks only with the help of a wheelchair. In 1993, Dr. Ketan Thaker, who specialized in Ayurveda started her on Ayurvedic medicines (more as an experiment). Willing to try the new treatment and feeling hopeful, Nishtha continued the treatment for one year, at the end of which there was no noticeable improvement in her condition. She, however, did not give up hope and continued to take her medicines regularly. Finally, her perseverance paid off. Now, she is able to move around with the help of a walker. Nishtha did not allow her ailment to affect her studies. She completed her graduation from Junagadh and did a Post Graduate Diploma in Human Resource Management at Ahmedabad and MBA. She has worked with a number of organizations like the Ellisbridge Gymkhana, SEWA, and Udgam School, and is currently working with the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad as a Clerical Assistant. Nishtha’s Turning point of life After meeting Ms. Sanjana Goel (President IAMD) in 2004, Nishtha took active interest in the field of rehabilitation and the empowering of people afflicted by muscular dystrophy. In 2008, she coordinated the 19th Medical Awareness Camp of the Indian Association of Muscular Dystrophy (IAMD) in Ahmedabad. Since then, she has conducted camps in nine districts in Gujarat, Three picnics and donated 14 wheelchairs which empowered the people living with Muscular Dystrophy. She is now the Chapter Head (Gujarat) for the IAMD. Nishtha has travelled all over the country and motivated many people suffering from muscular dystrophy.She successfully completed Toughest Amarnath Yatra also with her strong courage . She has helped in their rehabilitation by providing wheelchairs and other aids Achievements 1 In 2011, she received the ‘Best Employee’ (person with disability) award from the Government of Gujarat. 2 In the same year, she was honoured with the ‘Long Achievement Award’ by the BJP Mahila Morcha for her contribution to the differently abled sector. 3 She received the ‘Special Achievement Award (twice 2008-2010)’ for social activity from the IIMA Welfare Committee. 4 She has also been invited as a speaker in the seminar organized by FICCI and CBM Australia on ‘Promoting Inclusive Development through CSR: Equal Opportunities to people with disabilities’. 5 In 2012, well known jewelers AB Jewels and My FM 94.3 felicitated her on Woman’s Day. 6 In 2013 she got ‘Women’s Achievement Award’ from BJP ITCell. 7.Dr. Batras Positive Health Award 2013. 8 Many prizes during Hindi Pakhwada competition. Nishtha is a loving wife to her husband Ar. Krishna Anand, who is her pillar of support. She is a doting mother to a beautiful daughter. Nishtha believes that she is no different from other women – her challenges have in fact helped her overcome the many hurdles in her path and emerge stronger.