From Tragedy to Triumph: Anish Mohan’s Inspiring Journey to the JCI Ten Outstanding Young Persons of the World

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Anish Mohan’s existence mirrors the profound words of renowned MMA fighter Anderson Silva, which state, “Life will deliver the hardest blows. It’s not about how hard you retaliate, but about how much you can endure and continue battling. How much suffering can you withstand and persist? That’s the definition of victory.”

Anish, driven by this philosophy, has scaled heights that many of us can only aspire to. He hails from Kottayam and has been shortlisted among the final 20 contenders for the JCI Ten Outstanding Young Persons of the World (JCI TOYP) program for individuals under 40. He is the sole representative from India. His journey to this point has been challenging, as Anish himself attests.

He recounts, “I was overwhelmed when I discovered that I had made it to the top 20 finalists of the JCI TOYP.”

The JCI TOYP aims to formally acknowledge young achievers who excel in their respective fields and bring about positive transformations. By recognizing these individuals, JCI promotes the image of socially responsible leaders globally. The selected individuals serve as role models for their peers, encouraging them to strive for excellence and help others. Anish’s story, which is indeed inspiring, is a testament to this. A tragic train accident in 2009 drastically changed his life. He lost his right hand and left leg while attempting to catch a bus in Thiruvananthapuram. While his hand was reattached, his dreams seemed lost forever.

Before the incident, Anish was employed in the tech industry. But during his recuperation, he was inspired to transition into social work, aiding people who have endured similar hardships.

“Dr. Mathew Kanamala was a beacon of hope for me after the accident. He saw me weather the storm. After developing a bond with him, he prophesied that I would become a speaker. I didn’t have the heart to deny him, and thus, I began my journey as a motivational speaker, striving to inspire others while overcoming my own disabilities. I narrated stories and shared insights to motivate those listening to me. The positive feedback I received made me realize that I wanted to spread a message of hope and love,” Anish shares.

Anish believes that the most rewarding aspect of being a motivational speaker is knowing that at least one person in the audience will be profoundly changed by his words. He says, “Sharing knowledge is something I believe in. I have always enjoyed addressing people and had a knack for it. I never thought I would turn it into a profession.”

Currently, Anish serves as the national coordinator and trainer for the Institute for Person-Centered Approaches in India (IPCAI). “IPCAI’s mission is to cultivate a more empathetic and inclusive society, particularly focusing on individuals with disabilities and those from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds. I also manage a project called Teen IPCAI, which bridges the gap between teenagers with learning disabilities and their parents, offering motivational training, disability awareness, and counseling.”

His dedication to helping the disabled community earned him the role of district ambassador for the Systematic Voters Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP). This role allowed him to present his petition for equal rights for the differently-abled. His sustained efforts led to the establishment of special parking areas for disabled people across all governmental and public institutions in Kerala.

Through his motivational speeches, which have touched over 350,000 lives, Anish has transformed personal tragedy into a source of inspiration. He motivates people to support each other, especially those with special needs. His speeches and articles offer a platform for the disabled community to voice their needs, demonstrating his commitment to achieving social justice. Anish adds, “Helping others grow motivates me.”

As he awaits the results from

JCI, Anish remains confident and hopeful that he will be among the recognized names. “I’ve been receiving immense support, and I have this sense that this achievement is within reach. Voting will continue until midnight tomorrow. I’m hoping to receive this honor at the event in Estonia,” Anish says. To cast a vote for Anish, one can visit the website, click on his photo and biography, and then click the ‘like’ button beneath his photo. He credits his success so far to the encouragement and support from JCI Nalukody and JCI India.

Anish aspires to inspire 10 million people and make Kerala a state that’s more accommodating for individuals with disabilities.

He says, “Receiving international recognition gives me an even greater platform to assist the disabled community more broadly and help them achieve self-sufficiency. This is my ultimate dream. Always remember that there is hope and a greater purpose to your life.” This is how he concludes his inspiring story.

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