The World Education Laos TEAM project, funded by USAID, enables Persons with Disabilities, especially women and girls, to attain and maintain maximum independence to fully and equally participate in all aspects of life. The approach for this project uses a social model of disability and focuses on four main components: Training, Economic Empowerment, Assistive Technology, and Medical and Physical Rehabilitation. The four of these together allow the TEAM project to take a comprehensive social, right-based approach to improving services and have a positive effect on the quality of life and social inclusion for Persons with Disabilities in Laos.
TEAM awards sub-grants to 15 local non-profit associations and international NGOs to implement projects that support the development of the rehabilitation and disability sector. The partners collaborate to enhance the overall impact of all activities and create an environment in which PwD will be able to access a wider range of services. The TEAM project further works to strengthen the capacity of small partners to ensure organizational sustainability and increase effectiveness of organizations and programs that serve PwD.
Current sub-grant partner project activities include:
- Vocational training for women with disabilities
- Livelihoods development trainings, small business management/financial management training, and provision of grants to help PwD start running their own business
- Disability rights and equality trainings for employers, government staff, and village leaders to encourage them to become advocates for change and inclusion
- Training for medical staff on early detection of impairments
- Awareness raising and training on autism spectrum disorder
- Provision of assistive devices ranging from wheelchairs to devices for daily living to communication technology
- National Disability Policy and Strategy development and consultation workshops
- Training for medical and physical rehabilitation staff
- Wheelchair basketball
- Job readiness training, job placement, and follow up support for PwDs
- Inclusive education plans for children with disabilities
- Psychosocial support for PwD and caregivers
- Physical rehabilitation services and surgical/medical treatment for PwD