Although in Zambia there are rules providing for the protection of people with disabilities, these are not fully and correctly implemented. These people’s life is made more difficult by numerous architectural barriers, as well as being affected by discrimination and prejudices. This leads to heavy social, educational and economic isolation.
Project objectives: socio-economic inclusion and protection of the rights of 286 people with disabilities in the district of Ndola and Luanshya.
286 people with disabilities assisted
Removal of architectural barriers
Extension of the Da Gama’s centre’s health and physiotherapy services
According to data from the World Health Organization, 2 million people in Zambia are affected by disability, accounting for about 15% of the population. Data show that there is a prevalence of women compared to men, with a higher concentration in rural areas than in cities.
Unfortunately, disabled people are often the victims of heavy discrimination, both from their family and from society.
For this reason, the literacy and employment rates of people with disabilities are very low, making them one of the most vulnerable groups and the most excluded from economic and social activities.
Children with special educational needs, such as learning disabilities, are not adequately followed by teachers, who have often not been prepared to help them in the best possible way. And to make things even worse, there is a great shortage of adequate means of transport, and many facilities – both public and private – feature architectural barriers and difficult access.
Our goal is to promote, within two years, the educational, social and economic inclusion of children and adults affected by different disabilities.
To guarantee access to quality education to everyone, we will firstimprove school facilities, making them easier to access for children with reduced mobility, for example by building separate girls and boys equipped bathrooms and changing rooms.
We will then provideteachers with adequate training,enabling them to handle the most critical situations: being able to recognize certain learning disabilities is a crucial skill to enable children to follow a path and develop without being affected and limited by their disability.
In an effort to reduce prejudice and discrimination, the awareness-raising activity will also be extended to families and community leaders.
In addition to education, the project also takes action within the workplace. Some employment agency staff members and teachers of the Da Gama and Ukubalula schools will be provided training that will enable them to become job coaches and thus be a point of reference for people with disabilities, by helping them find a job and supporting them in their relationship with employers.
In addition, small plots of land within the Mary Christine farm will be allocated, so that the beneficiaries’ families will also be involved. The production of small handmade items will also be started both at this farm and at the Cicetekelo centre.
Finally, to ensure greater physical well-being, the Da Gama Centre will be refurbished, appropriate physiotherapy tools will be provided and the number of physiotherapists will be increased.
The overall objective of the project is to protect and promote the human rights of people with disabilities, ensuring their socio-economic inclusion within the community.
Socio-economicinclusion of people with disability in the district of Ndola and Luanshya
Tommaso Sartori, [email protected]
marzo 2018/marzo 2020
APJ 23 – Association Pope John 23
SFMA/FMSA Franciscan Missionary Sister of Assisi