Disability Inclusive Development (DID) training for community-based Self-Help Groups in Savannakhet and Xieng Khouang Provinces
From July 27 to 29, 2021 in Savannakhet Province and August 10 to 12, 2021 in Xieng Khouang Province, USAID Okard, together with the Association for Autism (AfA) and core trainer team from four organizations of people with disabilities (Lao Disabled People’s Association (LDPA), Association for Deaf (AFD), Lao Disabled Women Development Centre (LDWDC) and Disability Service Centre (DSC)), conducted Disability Inclusive Development (DID) training for leaders of the USAID Okard-established self-help groups (SHG) from 13 villages in Savannakhet and Xieng Khouang to strengthen their understanding of the rights of persons with disabilities and the role of self-help groups in supporting people with disabilities.
The representatives of the self-help groups who attended the training came with their interests in learning more about how to support people with disabilities to identify their own needs and promote inclusive and meaningful participation from people in their communities. Participants were particularly interested in options to help people with disabilities become self-sufficient, have jobs and income. Participants had the opportunity to brainstorm and share some of the main barriers that people with disabilities in their villages are facing such as inaccessible schools, restaurants, toilets and meeting rooms, bumpy roads making travel more difficult, and a lack of available assistive devices such as wheelchairs, canes, sign language teachers and knowledge about how to support people with intellectual disabilities.
After the sessions, participants finished the training with knowledge and a motivation to return to their groups to share more about different type of impairments, discrimination and equality, and how accessibility to clean water, healthcare, education and employment can improve the wellbeing of people with disabilities.
USAID Okard, funded by USAID and implemented by World Education Inc,. Humanity and Inclusion and Association for Autism improves access to quality healthcare and economic opportunities for persons with disabilities, and supports design and implementation of disabilities inclusive policies.