Background: Only 2% of people with disabilities in developing countries have access to basic services and rehabilitation.
Objectives: To bridge this gap, Motivation has been running Peer Training activities since 1993 and has identified that there is a growing need for Peer Training. The overall aim of Peer Training is for wheelchair users (Peer Trainers) to provide others (with similar disabilities) with the relevant knowledge on health issues, rights and skills to achieve a basic level of independence and greater quality of life.
Method: To test the impact of Peer Training, Motivation created a knowledge, skills and well-being questionnaire, which has been trialled in two locations: Kenya and Malawi.
Results: Overall, Motivation found that most participants reported an increase in knowledge, skills and well-being, supporting their experience that this training provides vital information and support mechanisms for wheelchair users in low- and middle-income countries. Further work is needed to ensure this tool measures the impact of Peer Training and lessons learnt have been identified to strengthen the methodology.
Conclusion: Although Peer Training is not a replacement for rehabilitation services, Motivation believes it is an effective way to not only increase knowledge and skills of persons with disabilities but also reduce the sense of social isolation that can often be a result of disability.