Resources for Networking and Information Exchange

Posted on 7 February 2009. Filed under: Deaf, Education, Human Rights, indigenous people, Networking Opportunities, News, Opportunities, Resources, South Asian Region, Sub-Saharan Africa Region, Women | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Asides from this blog, where can you find information and resources on disability in developing countries? And, how can you network with other people in the field?

If you’re a regular We Can Do reader, you know that this site has links to many resources and organizations. (Looking for something specific? Consult the Navigating We Can Do page for search tips.) But this blog is not the only source of information you can use. Here is a list of many of the places I turn to when I am looking for new information to share with We Can Do readers. The information disseminated via these sources include conference and job announcements; leads on resources that might be helpful to grassroots disability advocates or international development professionals; and news about what is happening among disabled people in developing countries around the world.

All of the following resources are free. A few of the following resources are news distribution lists. This means a single administrator decides what emails will go out to the list. News distribution lists are best if you simply wish to receive announcements relevant to your interests. In most cases, it will not be possible to filter the content: either you receive everything that is sent through that list (by subscribing to it) or you receive nothing.

Many of these resources are email-based discussion groups. This means that each person who joins the mailing list has the right both to receive emails from other list members and also to send their own emails to the entire group. Email discussion lists are best if you wish to both exchange information (including sharing some of your own) and also network with like-minded people and colleagues.

I also include a few Facebook networking groups and other websites.

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Resources for Networking and Information Exchange

News Distribution Lists
Email-Based Discussion Groups
Other Networking Opportunities (Facebook)
Websites of Interest
Where Else Do I Receive Information From?

News Distribution Lists
These send you news and announcements to your email. Usually the list owner or editor decides what news they will circulate.

DPI (Disabled People International)
Approximately once a week, Disabled People International circulates an email newsletter with short news items and announcements gathered from both developing and developed countries around the world. News can be sent to Dr. Cassandra Phillips at

CSID (Centre for Services and Information on Disability
This international news distribution list is based in Bangladesh, but disseminates journal articles, event announcements, and news from around the world.

A news distribution list on international development, including (but not limited to) an emphasis on disability issues. Distributes announcements about upcoming conferences, events, job posts, training sessions, and other opportunities.

International Development and Disability News
Mobility International USA (MIUSA) runs this email newsletter, each of which includes a few short news items related to international development and disability.

We Can Do blog
You’re reading this blog right now! But, did you know that you can sign up to receive an email each time new posts are added to the We Can Do blog? This may be helpful for busy people who might forget to check the blog on their own, or for people who are anxious to learn about new resources or opportunities within hours after they are posted. Follow the URL link to read the instructions.

WNUSP-News (World Network of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry)
This email newsletter is used to discuss global mental health, social justice issues, United Nations actions, World Health Organization statements, and other issues focused on global advocacy.

Ghulam Nabi Nizamani’s personal news distribution list
Ghulam Nabi Nizamani is a very active disability advocate who disseminates many news articles, conference and training announcements, and other material via his personal list of email contacts. Most of his material comes from, or focuses on, the South Asian region. But some focuses on other regions. Contact him directly via email (NOT at this blog) at to ask to be added to his distribution list. He travels frequently and sometimes cannot process his email for several weeks at a time, so it may take time for him to respond.

Human Rights Africa
This electronic newsletter is disseminated about three times a year by the Secretariat of the African Decade of Persons with Disabilities. You can read past issues, or sign up for future issues, by following the link.

Global Development Briefing
This website supports an email news distribution list that specializes in job announcements from around the world in the international development field. NOT specific to disability issues. If you want specifically a disability-related job then you may need to skim through many irrelevant job posts before you see something that suits your skills and interests. People who want employment in a specific country or city face a similar challenge. Job Board
No, I don’t normally use this board when I’m looking for We Can Do post ideas. But this is an excellent resource for people looking for either job opportunities or volunteer opportunities around the world. It even includes a few on-line opportunities for people who need or wish to volunteer from home. NOT a disability-specific resource, but does sometimes post some disability-related jobs or volunteer opportunities.

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Email-based Discussion Groups
These allow you to network with other people, and exchange ideas, resources, and announcements. Most allow you the choice to interact via either email or the web (check for “” in the URL). Others are solely email-based.

Global Partnership on Disability and Development
This email discussion group is moderated: if you try to send an email to the list, then it may often be delayed by several hours or days until the moderator is able to process it. Members include international development professionals with an interest in disability issues; some representatives of grassroots DPOs; and individual people who are interested in, or learning about, the field of disability and international development.

International Network of Women with Disabilities (INWWD)
An email-based discussion list for women with disabilities around the world. Participants can use the list to exchange knowledge and experience and coordinate efforts with other women with disabilities to promote human rights and inclusion.

This is the official International Disability Alliance (IDA) discussion group committed to promoting the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. For discussing official business of the IDA in relation to the CRPD. Some members in this list also participate in the AdHoc_IDC list (below), and some do not.

This list was originally founded while the CRPD was being written. It is no longer the official IDA list (see IDA_CRPD_Forum above), but some people continue to use this list to discuss disability rights and the CRPD. Some members of this list also participate in IDA_CRPD_Forum, and some do not.

The RatifyNow organization works to mobilize movements to ratify the CRPD in more countries, including the United States and elsewhere. Membership in the organization is free for both individual people and for organizations. Members and supporters use the email discussion list to exchange ideas for action.

Disability Research List
This list is intended for all those interested in research as it affects disabled people. It provides a forum for the exchange of ideas, information and news, among researchers and others working primarily within a social interpretation of disability. Some posts are UK or Euro centric, but sometimes discussion covers developing countries.

This email discussion list is intended to focus on disability issues in the Asia-Pacific region. Some participants also share information from other regions as well.

IINPWD (International Indigenous Network for People with Disabilities)
Indigenous peoples with disabilities from both developing and developed countries around the world use this email discussion group to exchange information and ideas for their mutual advocacy efforts. The listowner can be contacted at

Participants in this email-based discussion group exchange knowledge and information related to disability inclusive education in Eastern Africa.

Participants use this email discussion group to exchange information, and debate ideas related to Deaf Studies and sign languages in Africa.

Devoted to issues related to deaf people in developing countries. This is an extremely quiet list. But once every few months, someone distributes an announcement or tries to start a discussion.

Disability and Human Rights
This tiny, email discussion group currently has only 25 members; discussion focuses on disability and human rights around the world.

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Other Networking Opportunities (Facebook)
Another tool for networking is Facebook. Facebook operates through the web. Sign up for an account; explore the resources at Facebook; and join one or more networking groups in the language(s) of your choice. If you are new to Facebook, it is free and takes only a few minutes to sign up.

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Networking Among Disabled People in Developing Countries and Allies (English) (French) (Italian)
Looking for an informal way to meet other people on-line who share your passion for human rights, poverty, and international development issues among people with disabilities in developing countries? Consider joining this free Facebook group. You can post messages on the “Wall,” or participate in the Discussion Board. Currently available in English, French, or Italian. I’m hoping people will eventually step forward to create similar groups in more languages. If you do not already have a Facebook account, then it only takes a few minutes to sign up, and is free.

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Websites of Interest
These are websites that may be worth exploring, particularly for resources and publications.

This website provides links to many resources and toolkits related to international development and health. Some resources are targeted at grassroots organizations in developing countries, others are targeted at researchers and international development professionals. Includes a section on disability-related resources (follow the link). I sometimes browse this database when looking for ideas of resources to feature at We Can Do. But I will never have time to cover everything that deserves attention. If you haven’t already explored it on your own, please do.

Secretariat of the African Decade of Persons with Disabilities
On this page, you can find training manuals for disability advocates that need to plan projects and evaluate them; build their capacity; learn how to run advocacy or lobbying campaigns; or train journalists in writing about the human rights of people with disabilities. I have featured a few of these resources at We Can Do, but not all of them. Worth exploring.

Enabling Education Network (EENET)
An excellent site for educators in developing countries who work with students with disabilities. Click on “search” and try a key word search (for example, “violence,” or “sign language,” or the name of your country).

We Can Do blog roll
Don’t miss the We Can Do blog roll. At the very bottom of every page at this blog site, you can see a list of links to many international- and national-level disability-oriented organizations, on-line resources, blog sites, and more. Simply scroll down the screen to start exploring. You might discover an interesting organization or a helpful resource.

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Where Else Do I Receive Information From?
One important source of information for many announcements, resource links, and news items that I post at We Can Do is … YOU! Many of the items posted at this blog are submitted by We Can Do readers. If you have an announcement, news item, or resource suggestion that you think would be interesting for blog readers, please do contact me at ashettle [at] (use an @ at sign in place of [at] and remove the spaces).

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In most cases, I have the resources listed here for many years. But these are not the only networking opportunities or information sources that exist. Please do explore the blog roll at the bottom of this page to help you find other web sites that may lead you to more ideas for gathering information or making contacts in the international disability field. You may find resources I have never known about!

Subscribe to We Can Do
Learn how to receive an email alert when new material is posted at We Can Do (

Other Resources at We Can Do
Catch up with the news; explore resources, toolkits, or funding and fellowship opportunities; find research, reports, papers, or statistics; or look up conferences, events, call for papers, or education/training opportunities.

We Can Do Copyright
This blog post is copyrighted to We Can Do ( Currently, only two web sites have on-going permission to syndicate (re-post) We Can Do blog posts in full: and Other sites are most likely plagiarizing this post without permission.

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