accidental ALLY

Unleashing the shift from disability to discovering ability

The Golden Gate Bridge with the words accidental Ally above it inside a blue circle


accidental ALLY

We are accidental Ally, a social good enterprise dedicated to creating meaningful career pathways for people with cognitive and intellectual disabilities.

In our work, we are delivering impact by doing the following —

  • Helping people with cognitive and intellectual disabilities dream big and work towards building a career of their dreams.
  • Helping people with cognitive and intellectual disabilities make money, save money, and live better.
  • Helping companies create personalized and amazing customer experiences for people with disabilities and, in the process, for EVERYONE.
  • Helping the world recognize how people with disabilities are quite tech-savvy because technology (especially Gen AI) helps them access and navigate a world that is not usually designed for them and available to them.
  • Connecting the contributions of people with disabilities to business value and helping companies deliver innovation with purpose and intent.


Food, Flowers and Trash

We first heard this expression when a mom described the limited opportunities available to her son who has Down syndrome. The jobs available to people like him are the jobs in a grocery store, on a farm or in a restaurant. The training opportunities are limited. Many young men and women with cognitive and intellectual disabilities are extremely independent, tech savvy and make it through high school but once they are out, the opportunities are limited. According to an Accenture study, we know that when it comes to employment of people with disabilities, “in the US, 31% are employed, compared to 75% of their peers. The low representation in the workforce is not for lack of desire, but of opportunity.” We want to help connect people with cognitive and intellectual disabilities to job opportunities where they can realize their full potential.


Harnessing the ability in the Disability

We want to enable the shift from disability to discovering ability. Many young men and women with cognitive and intellectual disabilities are extremely independent and tech savvy. They make up a large untapped talent pool that is eager to learn and contribute! Read our manifesto to learn more about us, our work and our approach.


Why are there so few people with disabilities in the workforce?

The exploration of this question is what led to The Accidental Ally 2021 Internship. We hired young men and women ages 18–25 years with Down syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, and Autism. We hired them because we wanted to know if they are willing to learn new skills, and are eager to work. What we learned from this experience was that these young men and women are the most underrated, undervalued, and underestimated group of people in our world today. They have tremendous potential to contribute to the world in meaningful ways.


Can you help me learn new skills and find a job in tech?

We have developed a real-world work environment where learning takes place using hands on learning and project based learning. Learning plans are customized to every individual based on their inherent abilities. We collaborate with employers on new areas of work such as Demand Generation, Marketing Operations, Security and Web Accessibility testing, Game Accessibility, Video and Podcast editing to name a few.


Are employers willing to invest in potential?

We need a shift in the mindset where employers think differently about disabled people. We need employers to invest in potential and to look beyond a resume. We need employers to invest in the training and development of disabled people so that they become qualified candidates. We need employers to create real-world and on-the-job training opportunities for disabled people. We need to match the job to the candidate, not the other way around.


Does the constitution protect the right to work for persons with disabilities?

Only 18% of the countries in the world constitutionally protect the right to work for persons with disabilities. What if your right to work was taken from you? What would you do?