Inclusive Futures played a crucial role in supporting some of the most marginalised people with disabilities in Bangladesh, Kenya, Nepal, Nigeria, and Tanzania during the COVID-19 pandemic. This paper summarises what we learned and it can be used to include people with disabilities in future programming, particularly in contexts at risk of crisis.
This article explores COVID-19 related experiences of disabled people in Bangladesh, Kenya, Nigeria, Nepal and Uganda. Narrative interviews generated storied responses, focussing on respondents' priorities, which enabled us to hear what was most significant for them and their families. 143 interviews were conducted online or by phone by 7 local researchers (3 disabled), with appropriate inclusive support. Nearly everyone was interviewed twice to capture the progression of impacts over time. The data was analysed thematically through a virtual participatory approach. An overarching 'subjective' theme of feelings experienced by the participants was labelled 'destabilisation, disorientation and uncertainty'. We also identified 'concrete' or material impacts. People experienced various dilemmas such as choosing between securing food and keeping safe, and tensions between receiving support and feeling increased vulnerability or dependence, with interplay between the emotions of fear, loss and hope. We found both the concept of liminality and grief models productive in understanding the progression of participants' experiences. Disabled people reported the same feelings, difficulties and impacts as others, reported in other literature, but often their pre-existing disadvantages have been exacerbated by the pandemic, including poverty, gender and impairment related stresses and discrimination, inaccessible services or relief, and exclusion from government initiatives.
As globalization continues to bring everyone and everything closer together, not all of the trade-offs are necessarily positive. As we export our unique cultures and experiences around the globe, we also increase the spread of chronic health problems.
For much of the 20th century, a person’s likelihood of developing a chronic health disease like type II diabetes depended on the wealth of the country they lived in equally as much as their own biology and genetic factors. In wealthy, developed countries, people are much more likely to survive to old age and eventually pass away from diseases of affluence — chronic diseases like cancer, heart disease, and diabetes that primarily impact the ageing population. In contrast, people living in developing nations are much more likely to experience malnourishment, violence, and communicable diseases that have a major impact on their overall health and quality of life.
This distinction has proven to be true across many developed countries, including globalization giants like the United States. Even in the more economically disadvantaged areas of America, hardly anyone dies as a result of communicable diseases like tuberculosis, a disease that is still a serious problem in lesser developed nations. Alternatively, in low to middle-income countries, these types of health concerns are still a going concern. Alongside the increased risk of encountering a communicable disease, people living in these areas are also at a higher risk for developing diseases of affluence such as type II diabetes. In this way, people living in developing nations are more likely to experience cancer while also battling cholera infections, and someone living with diabetes is also more likely to be struggling with chronic malnourishment. This lack of distinction between diseases of affluence and communicable diseases puts people living in developing nations at a disadvantage.
In this new global landscape of health and disease, the impact of diabetes is truly overwhelming. Since 1980, the number of people living with diabetes has almost doubled from 152 million to between 285-347 million (1). As a result of this dramatic increase, health spending and global costs have also had to increase to meet the growing demand for care. In 2019, it is estimated that diabetes caused over 760 billion USD in health expenditures, making up about 10% of all global spending on adults (2).
As the prevalence of diabetes continues to grow around the world, we need to shift our attention to finding global solutions to this invisible epidemic. Understanding the connection between obesity, globalization, and diabetes is a great starting point in order to tackle this ever-growing global health problem.
The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated inequalities and barriers to social inclusion for people with disabilities. These experiences of social exclusion have been feltto an even greater extent by women with disabilities and under-represented groups of people with disabilities, leading to a range of effects on the operations and priorities of OPDs. To address a critical gap in the evidence base, the Disability Inclusion Helpdesk carried out a rapid assessment of the role of OPDs during the pandemic, and how the pandemic has affected OPDs’ operations and priorities.
This Labour Market Assessment for Uganda is a refresh of the initial assessments done in 2019 for the Inclusion Works programme. The assessment adopts a Markets for Poor (M4P) approach to mapping demand for and supply of labour, supporting functions and regulatory frameworks; recognising that labour markets conditions will have evolved since 2019, especially in light of COVID-19. The perspectives of jobseekers, employers, and organisations of persons with disabilities (OPDs) are also included in this analysis. The report provides insights into market changes and recommendations to enable Inclusion Works programming to adapt and be more effective in their interventions.
This Labour Market Assessment for Nigeria is a refresh of the initial assessments done in 2019 for the Inclusion Works programme. The assessment adopts a Markets for Poor (M4P) approach to mapping demand for and supply of labour, supporting functions and regulatory frameworks; recognising that labour markets conditions will have evolved since 2019, especially in light of COVID-19. The perspectives of jobseekers, employers, and organisations of persons with disabilities (OPDs) are also included in this analysis. The report provides insights into market changes and recommendations to enable Inclusion Works programming to adapt and be more effective in their interventions.
This Labour Market Assessment for Kenya is a refresh of the initial assessments done in 2019 for the Inclusion Works programme. The assessment adopts a Markets for Poor (M4P) approach to mapping demand for and supply of labour, supporting functions and regulatory frameworks; recognising that labour markets conditions will have evolved since 2019, especially in light of COVID-19. The perspectives of jobseekers, employers, and organisations of persons with disabilities (OPDs) are also included in this analysis. The report provides insights into market changes and recommendations to enable Inclusion Works programming to adapt and be more effective in their interventions.
This Labour Market Assessment for Bangladesh is a refresh of the initial assessments done in 2019 for the Inclusion Works programme. The assessment adopts a Markets for Poor (M4P) approach to mapping demand for and supply of labour, supporting functions and regulatory frameworks; recognising that labour markets conditions will have evolved since 2019, especially in light of COVID-19. The perspectives of jobseekers, employers, and organisations of persons with disabilities (OPDs) are also included in this analysis. The report provides insights into market changes and recommendations to enable Inclusion Works programming to adapt and be more effective in their interventions.
The manual Reclaiming SRHR of Women and Girls with Disabilities was developed as part of ARROW’s initiative, ‘Defending SRHR of Women and Girls with Disabilities’ with inputs and insights incorporated from regional experts from multiple disciplines whose contributions enriched the content of the manual. The manual aims to equip women and girls with disabilities with necessary SRHR information and knowledge to make informed choices free from coercion, violence, discrimination, and abuse. The Manual, therefore, contains detailed Modules on gender, sexuality, disability, rights, and their interlinkages in the context of addressing sexual and gender-based violence against women and girls with disabilities. Through this, it seeks to provide accessible information and knowledge on SRHR to women and girls with disabilities in various contexts, including in the face of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
A Training of Trainers (ToT) manual on disability rights, gender and SRHR.
WISH2ACTION project is being implemented in Bangladesh since September 2018 and will end on 31 August 2021. During these years of implementation, HI worked to ensure the inclusion of persons with disabilities in the sector of sexual & reproductive health through community engagement as well as policy changes at the national level. Throughout the project period, many success stories & good practices were drawn as learning and could be used as a reference for future practices, and HI Bangladesh is delighted to introduce these documents of learning through this publication.
Disability Inclusion Helpdesk evidence digest highlights the latest evidence, guidance, and programme learning on inclusive education. Within it you’ll also find the latest evidence, guidance and policy news on a range of other disability inclusion topics including stigma, discrimination, and violence; poverty, social protection, and employment; inclusive health systems; and disability inclusion in humanitarian settings.
This synthesis report summarise the major findings from those five briefings, and provide context and supplementary information. It first discusses the disability prevalence rates at national and county level, and reasons for the discrepancies between the last two censuses. It then examines policy, governance and institutional set up for inclusions of persons with disabilities. Then it presents the major findings from the five budget-tracking exercises. The report ends with general conclusions and recommendations.
This guide is designed to support UNHCR staff, partners and other stakeholders at field level to:
- Recognize the protection concerns and capacities of refugees with disabilities and other persons with disabilities protected and assisted by UNHCR;
- Apply the principles reflected in the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) and UNHCR Guidance on Working with Persons with Disabilities to a range of programs and sectors;
- Design immediate and long-term strategies to mitigate protection risks and promote the inclusion of persons with disabilities in UNHCR programming.
The four modules include:
- Introductory module - Organizing an accessible and inclusive workshop (Module 1);
- Promoting a rights-based approach to disability (Module 2);
- Raising awareness about the impact of forced displacement on persons with disabilities (Module 3);
- Learning key strategies to foster inclusion of persons with disabilities in forced displacement (Module 4).
Humanitarian actors recognize the lack of standard practice on the inclusion of older people and people with disabilities in humanitarian response as a current and critical gap in the sector. In recent years, the humanitarian sector has begun to more intentionally address these challenges. In response, the IRC has developed this Inclusive Client Responsiveness Guidance, which aims to address gaps in the IRC’s Client Responsive Programming specifically to strengthen inclusion of people with disabilities and older people. The Guidance consists of three sections to support staff in strengthening inclusion of people with disabilities and older people using the IRC’s Client Responsiveness approach:
Key concepts for designing inclusive feedback mechanisms such as accessibility and reasonable accommodation, to ensure that barriers are addressed, and feedback mechanisms are designed to be accessible to all.
Selection and design of inclusive feedback mechanisms that foster diversity and inclusion.
Monitoring access to feedback mechanisms of people with disabilities and older people through appropriate data collection and analysis.
The guidance also includes a set of resources for practical implementation, which are referenced throughout the document
Early childhood education has the potential to expand opportunities for disadvantaged children, provided that programmes use inclusion as a guiding principle. While the international community has committed to inclusive education, countries vary in their efforts to extend this goal to early childhood. Universal access is the basis of inclusion, and countries must address barriers related to socio-economic status, ethnicity, gender, language, disability and remoteness. Cooperation among multiple actors to identify special needs early and provide integrated services is needed, as are inclusive curricula that support children’s socioemotional development and identity formation. Finally, educators must be given the knowledge, training, and support to implement inclusive practices and work with families from all backgrounds
Policy paper 46.
Organised by HI, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Luxembourg, the Ministry of Health of Guyana and CSEM. Participants discussed challenges and best practices to access quality rehabilitation services and inclusive health systems. The event highlighted the often side-lined role of rehabilitation in achieving SDG3 on health and wellbeing and its positive repercussions on many other SDGs. The lessons learned during the COVID-19 crisis were presented in the panel discussions, showing not only the relevance of rehabilitation for people affected by COVID-19, but also the need to maintain essential rehabilitation services operating during health crises
Evidence on the Experience of the Diversity of Persons with Disabilities, their Representative organisations and Civil Society Organisations in dealing with the COVID-19 Pandemic and preparing to Build Back Inclusively. The International Disability and Development Consortium, the International Disability Alliance, Inclusive Futures, Social Development Direct, UK AID and the UNPRPD's side event as part of the 14th session of the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (COSP14).
This event aimed at providing guidelines to local, national and international stakeholders to support their recovery and build sustainable resilience to future shocks, based on the findings from three complementary research projects. With the UNPRPD support, IDA and IDDC gathered data respectively on the experience of persons with disabilities since the first wave and on the COVID-19 consequences on projects and programmes run by CSOs in the Global South. The Disability Inclusion Helpdesk, a FCDO funded facility, IDA and Sightsavers investigated the pandemic impact on OPDs
This package is designed to assist with the training of staff within CBM and its partners. It has been prepared with country and regional advisory staff in mind but will have value for project/ programme management and other staff too. It has been designed for use with small groups of participants (e.g., maximum 10-15).
This training package focuses on inclusive education. It interprets inclusive education in a broad sense as a dual process of bringing about education system change, at all levels of education, to the benefit of all learners; and supporting the needs of individual learners, especially those with disabilities. It is not a training about specific impairments, nor will it show participants how to identify, teach and support learners with specific impairments. Instead the package helps participants to understand better the overarching challenges being faced and the systematic programme and advocacy approaches that CBM, its partners and other similar organisations need to engage with.
This training package consists of the following booklets:
A Inclusive education and CBM
B Inclusive education and the community
C Participation and achievement for all learners
D Education system change
In recent times there has been sustained momentum to address inequalities within university faculties and improve the diversity of students. Also, in response to historical and current social injustices, universities have sought to decolonize curricula. These progressive movements have had particular significance for departments focused on development studies and related subjects because the need to be inclusive is not only the right thing to do from a moral position, but also because to be exclusive is fundamentally challenging to the conceptualization and philosophy of the discipline. Development is a contested term but addressing inequality and working towards social justice are common themes found across most definitions. This commentary provides a critical insight into the importance of inclusive universities as gatekeepers to equitable knowledge production and the development of future professionals. To play their part in addressing the challenges posed by a globalized world, universities need to be proactive in ensuring that they become fully and meaningfully inclusive. While all university departments would benefit from becoming more inclusive, departments focused on development must be the pioneers leading the way, as inclusivity is relevant to the delivery of development studies, as well as emerging as an important discourse within the discipline that continues to evolve. This commentary will explore how and why in an increasingly interconnected global society, the need for universities to leave no one behind, and challenge hegemonic and unequal structures has never been greater.
This qualitative study was undertaken as part of the work of the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) funded Inclusion Works programme which aims to improve inclusive employment for people with disabilities in four countries: Uganda, Kenya, Nigeria, Bangladesh. When the COVID-19 pandemic emerged early in 2020 the work of this consortium programme was adapted to focus on pandemic relief and research activities, while some other planned work was not possible.
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