How to include

17 Jul 2014

Inclusion is about …

Being well informed of some basics about people with disabilities

15 % of the world population or 1 billion people have moderate or severe disability, of whom 2,7 % or 200 million experience severe disability (WHO). 80% of persons with disabilities live in developing countries (UNDP). The World Bank estimates that 20 % of the world poorest people are disabled.

In other words, full development cannot be achieved without including people with disabilities. And if we pretend that our projects target the poorest of the poorest or the most in need, once again people with disabilities cannot be excluded.

Also to remember that for different reasons, people with disabilities are not the most visible part of the population. Children may for instance be kept hidden at home. Not looking for people with disabilities and proactively including them will in some contexts be synonymous to excluding them.

Being included is a question of rights: With the signing of the United Nation Convention of the Right of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), adopted by the UN in December 2006, the relevance of a Human Right approach when it comes to people with disabilities has been emphasized. People with disabilities have access to equal services than any other human being, not on the basis of charity or medical considerations but simply because it is their right.

Be aware of the obstacles that persons with disabilities are facing and which hamper inclusion

These barriers are of different types:
– Environmental (access to buildings, information, transports, …)
– Institutional (Exclusion of people with disabilities through strict recruitment criteria)
– Attitudinal (People with disabilities are assumed “dependent”, a priori unable to perform a task etc..)

Learn some tools on how to include

The reference manuals mentioned below provide a number of tools of interest (Checklists, program cycle etc …)
We also offer trainings on the basis of these manuals.

Get inspired by what the others are doing

Various networks exist to provide a platform for exchange of your experience when it comes to disability inclusion. In Norway the Atlas Alliance coordinates a platform of Norwegian actors and organizations interested to exchange knowledge and experience on Disability inclusion.

Discuss your projects from the beginning with Disabled People Organisations

All projects are different and unique. If there are common tools there is no “one size fits all”. It is through the continuous exchange between the ones that know their project and the ones who know about disabilities that a project can really reach a high level of inclusion.

Links to key reference manuals for training on disability:

Travelling together (World Vision)

Inclusion Made Easy (CBM)

Count me in (Light for the world)

Key manual on inclusive education:
Inclusive Education in Low-Income Countries

Ausaid Accessibility guide

Resources – Useful websites:

UN Enable ( focal point within the United Nations system on matters relating to disability.) (Newsletter available)

Ask Source (Newsletter available)

Read about inclusive education and community based development here:

Inclusive education

Community based development

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