Meet the Match

An Architect and Advocate Defined by Selfless Success

From the SOS Children’s Village where he grew up as a boy to becoming the first wheelchair user in Nepal to graduate with a degree in architectural engineering, Deepak KC’s life is a story of perseverance and giving back.

In a wheelchair for as long as he can remember, Deepak excelled in Para table tennis from the time he was a teenager and pursued it alongside his professional training in architecture. Through sport, he was able to gain a sense of strength and purpose that pushed him forward.

“I am a great believer in the power of sport,” Deepak says. “In my school life, sport was one of the ways I could engage with my non-disabled friends to feel included, self-confident, and to believe that I am really not that different even though I am in a wheelchair.”

After completing his bachelor’s degree in architectural engineering from the Kathmandu Engineering College at Tribhuvan University in 2007, Deepak founded the National Physical Disabled Table Tennis Association—Nepal, where he is president.  Deepak also currently serves as the deputy secretary general of the Nepal Paralympic Committee and was appointed to the Athletes Standing Committee of the Asian Paralympic Committee through 2018.

Deepak is focused on grassroots activities and accessibility. He regularly visits schools and conferences to share his story as motivation for young people with disabilities to participate in sports. He also uses his architecture for social good, serving on the board of the Global Alliance on Accessible Technologies and Environments and collaborating with the Institute for Human Centered Design (IHCD), based in Boston, on creating accessible environments in Nepal. Deepak’s work earned him the 2014 Herman Gmeiner Award for outstanding achievement.

“I want to see how accessibility impacts the rights of people with disabilities in the sports sector,” Deepak says. “I am convinced that sport can be used as a tool for advocacy and awareness so that all people, regardless of age, ability, and gender can enjoy the lives they want as human beings.”

At Spaulding Rehabilitation Network, Deepak was mentored by Mary Patstone and Dr. Cheri Blauwet, who helped provide him with access to some of the top minds using disability sport as a tool for rehabilitation and empowerment. Spaulding hosts a wide range of adaptive sports programming at its multiple facilities and the mentorship team was sure to expose Deepak to the best practices, training knowledge, and networks he needs in order to continue serving as an advocate and pioneer in Nepal. Through Dr. Cheri, Deepak also had access to Eli Wolff of the Inclusive Sports Initiative at the ICHD, where he could continue developing his work in accessibility.

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