Differently Abled People Association Inc. was founded by parents and young people who have a disability including autism spectrum disorder to meet the support needs of people who have a disability and help them discover and develop their abilities and talents to achieve greater independence in the areas of life and social skills, leisure and creative pursuits, communications and technology skills, vocational skills and adult education needs.
So often programs and services emphasise the disability whereas our new organisation seeks to take a more positive approach and emphasise the abilities and talents of the individual. This is reflected in the choice of name for the association. It is the key philosophy underlining our purpose in helping people with disability and/or autism spectrum disorder discover and develop their abilities and talents; to make a socially valued contribution to the community and benefit other people in a similar situation to themselves.
The association aims to promote greater community awareness of the abilities and talents of people who have a disability and or autism spectrum disorder.
Since 2010, Mr Vincent Yu decided to plan a project to create employment for the whole life for his autistic son Bowman. He came across a smart phone application which lists retail shops near the mobile device with road maps for directions.
In 2011, a feasibility study on Adhunter smart phone application looked promising to make additions to become suitable search engine for disability service. Work then began to develop that application in such a way that data entry is so simple for Bowman to work. In addition, search mechanism was made simple pointing to pictures and the results displayed in photos with voices on text if desires.
In 2012, the application was approved by Apple and was released in December and the following months Android version was added. Since July, a support staff was hired with the help of SEDS, a Disability Employment Service provider, to assist 3 people like Bowman to start entering data. It proved that the data entry tasks were made easier for the participants. By the end of January, it was noticed that over thousands of download was achieved. Parents of participants with volunteers decided to form a charitable organisation. Four months later DAPA was registered with DGR status for tax exemption. Now we have already had over 100,000 pieces of information entered into our App and employed a dozen young people. With our living skill training between working hours we have helped young people with disability to live independently.