Commonwealth Nations

News at Your Fingertips

Posted on 30 December 2007. Filed under: autism, Blind, Children, Cognitive Impairments, Commonwealth Nations, Community Based Rehabilitation (CBR), Cross-Disability, Deaf, Democratic Participation, East Asia and Central Asia, East Asia Pacific Region, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, Education, Employment, Families, Funding, Health, HIV/AIDS, Human Rights, Inclusion, Introduction to "We Can Do", Latin America & Caribbean, Middle East and North Africa, Mobility Impariments, Multiple Disabilities, News, Psychiatric Disabilities, Rehabilitation, Reports, Resources, South Asian Region, Sub-Saharan Africa Region, technology, Women |

I have now added a page to the top navigation bar, News, that consolidates all the news and press releases posted at We Can Do since this blog began.

I mostly cribbed this new page from the work I did recently for the We Can Do Retrospective: The First 100 Posts (and Then Some). However, if you compare the two, you will see that there are more items listed under the “News” page in the top navigation bar than there are in the Retrospective post. That’s because, when I wrote the Retrospective post, I made a rule with myself that each We Can Do post would be listed only once, even if it arguably belonged in more than one category. Some of the “news” items reported new resources that might still be helpful for readers months or years from now. So I listed those items under “Resources” in the Retrospective post instead of news. But for the “News” page in the navigation bar, I made sure to include anything that was tagged as “news” when it was first posted.

I will try to keep the “News” page up to date. You will notice that it already includes one news item that has gone up since the Retrospective post.



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We Can Do Retrospective: The First 100 Posts (and Then Some)

Posted on 22 December 2007. Filed under: Academic Papers and Research, Announcements, Arts, autism, Blind, Call for Papers, Case Studies, Children, Cognitive Impairments, Commonwealth Nations, Community Based Rehabilitation (CBR), Cross-Disability, Deaf, Democratic Participation, Disability Studies, Disaster Planning & Mitigation, East Asia and Central Asia, East Asia Pacific Region, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, Education, Education and Training Opportunities, Employment, Events and Conferences, Families, Fellowships & Scholarships, Funding, Guest Blogger, Health, HIV/AIDS, Housing, Human Rights, Immigration, Inclusion, Interpreting, Introduction to "We Can Do", Jobs & Internships, Latin America & Caribbean, Middle East and North Africa, Mobility Impariments, Multiple Disabilities, News, Opinion, Opportunities, Policy & Legislation, Poverty, Psychiatric Disabilities, Rehabilitation, Remittances, Reports, Resources, South Asian Region, Sub-Saharan Africa Region, technology, Violence, Volunteer Opportunities, Women | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Skip introduction, go straight to the Table of Contents

If you’re new to We Can Do, what interesting information, news, or resources might you have overlooked from the past few months? Although some older items may no longer be interesting, others may still be relevant and helpful a year or three from now. This post can help guide you through the first 100-plus posts at this blog. You can click from the table of contents below to any section of this page that interests you–and then another click on “table of contents” can take you back to the contents, or “top of this page” takes you back to this introduction.

Top of this page


Table of Contents

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About We Can Do

To learn more about the purpose of We Can Do, see About We Can Do. For more on its guiding philosophy, go to Why We Can Do.

Thinking about submitting your own written materials, job posts, conference announcements, or resources to We Can Do? Check the Wish list for written materials and resources.

Want to receive an alert in email when a new post goes up at We Can Do? You can Subscribe to We Can Do for free.

I changed the organization and appearance of We Can Do in early October to its present format.

Table of Contents; Top of this page

The Five Most Popular We Can Do posts

The five listed here are the ones that have attracted the most “page views” since We Can Do began in late July. You may notice that not all of these are featured in the 10 “most popular posts” listed in the right-hand navigation bar. That’s because the navigation bar only lists posts that have received a lot of traffic very recently (I think within the past few days; its done automatically by wordpress so I’m not sure how it works). But here I’m listing the five that have the highest TOTAL page views.

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The Five Most Under-Rated We Can Do posts

Are these posts really under-rated? You’ll have to read them and decide for yourself. But in choosing these five, I used two criteria: 1. These are posts that have received fewer than 100 visitors–sometimes far fewer. 2. These are posts that I think could be helpful or interesting to readers and maybe deserve more attention than they have gotten. These are in no particular order:

Table of Contents; Top of this page

Finding Practical Resources and Case Studies or Helpful Organizations

Finding organizations; Resources for inclusive development; Human rights resources; Case studies; Other helpful resources

Finding organizations
Mainstream international development agencies sometimes say that they don’t know how to find people with disabilities, or their representative organizations, in the developing countries where they work. Reviewing the July post entitled Finding Local Disability Organizations may help point you in the right direction. Also see Disability Organizations in Afghanistan, Asia, Kenya, Uganda.

Disabled People’s Organizations (DPOs) sometimes aren’t sure where to find mainstream development organizations and resources that might be willing to collaborate with them.

There is an international network of organizations for families of people with Rubinstein Taybi Syndrome.

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Resources for Inclusive Development
Both disability advocates and mainstream development organizations want to ensure that people with disabilities are not left behind when countries and organizations fight poverty or improve public health, education, water, and other services. But it can be a challenge to figure out how to make projects and government policies more inclusive. The following resources can help:

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Resources on the International Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
By now, you may be aware that a global movement is taking place to ratify the international disability rights treaty, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Many relevant resources are now being produced in relation to the CRPD, some of which have been posted or featured here at We Can Do:

  • Read the CRPD “translated” into plain English.
  • UNICEF has developed a child-friendly version of the CRPD to help children understand disability rights
  • Disabled People International offers two toolkits on ratifying and implementing the CRPD for disability advocates who want to help ensure that all disabled people have their human rights recognized.
  • A handbook on disability rights targeted at parliamentarians can help parliamentarians, people who work in close contact with government agencies, and disability advocates in general, better understand the CRPD.
  • The United Nations’ new web site, UN Enable, is one of the best, and most official, places to find information on the CRPD.
  • Handicap International has produced its own Teaching Kit on the CRPD.
  • The International Disability Equality Agency (IDEA) has issued Equalize It! A Manifesto for Disability Equality in Development Cooperation that expresses their position on how to ensure disability equality in the international development field.
  • Top of Finding practical resources; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Case Studies
    Reviewing case studies of projects implemented elsewhere can be a valuable source of ideas that could help you figure out how to run or implement your own projects. I would love to post many more best-practice and failed-practice case studies than I have available right now. If you think you have something worth sharing, please check my Wish List of Written Materials and Resource and contact me at ashettle [at] patriot.net.

    But for now, here are two case studies:

    Top of Finding practical resources; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Other Helpful Resources

    Top of Finding practical resources; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Finding Useful Sources of Information and Research

    Finding academic research, papers, resources, or statistics
    Looking for academic research and academic papers; resources that can be used by people working in the field; or sources of statistics? Some of the following posts may be helpful:

    Information on people with disabilities
    Interested in learning about the living conditions of people with disabilities in specific nations, or in specific thematic areas? Some of the following may be of interest:

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Funding Sources

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Academic Papers

    We Can Do has published, or re-published, academic papers, or linked to same, on a range of subjects, including:

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    News

    September 2007; October 2007; November 2007; Early December 2007

    September 2007
    At one point in September, the international disability community prematurely thought we might be On the Verge of Making History by ratifying the disability rights community.

    Top of News; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    October 2007

    Top of News; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    November 2007

    Top of News; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Early December 2007

    Top of News; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Opinion Pieces

    So far, the opinion pieces here are all by me. But I would like for We Can Do to be host to an active exchange of ideas and differing perspectives. If you have a strong opinion about something, please consider submitting it. Yes, that includes opinions that disagree with mine! Consult the Wish list for written materials and resources for ideas of the kinds of topics I’m trying to cover at We Can Do.

    Meanwhile, here are a few of my own opinion pieces:

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Call for Papers (for Conferences, Journals, Other)

    You might be just now starting your academic career as an undergraduate or graduate student. Or perhaps you have been doing quantitative or qualitative research, or writing policy analysis, or case studies, or social analysis, for years. Either way, if you’re looking for opportunities to present, publish, or otherwise disseminate your papers or run a workshop, then check out these upcoming or ongoing opportunities:

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    International Conferences and Events

    Looking for a conference to attend? Here are a few upcoming events:
    January 2008; February 2008; March 2008; April 2008; May 2008; August 2008; September 2008; November 2008

    January 2008
    The South Asian Conference on Autism is being held in New Delhi, India in January 2008.

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    February 2008

  • The Disabilities Initiatives in Development Seminar, also in Bangladesh also in February 2008.
  • One for all: Persons with Disabilities Initiative in Development, again in Bangladesh in February 2008.
  • The International Centre for Sign Languages and Deaf Studies at the University of Central Lancashire in Preston, UK is holding a conference on sign language research in the UK in February 2008.
  • A conference on the deaf community, sign languages, social issues, civil rights, and creativity will be held on the campus of Swarthmore College in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, USA.
  • The Techshare India 2008 Conference on accessibility will be held in New Delhi, India, in February 2008.
  • Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    March 2008
    The 8th annual meeting of the Gulf Disability Society will meet in United Arab Emirates in March 2008.

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    April 2008

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    May 2008

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    August 2008

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    September 2008

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    November 2008
    The Association on Women’s Rights in Development (AWID)’s International Forum on Women’s Rights and Development will be held in Cape Town, South Africa in November 2008. A call for proposals is open until January 28, 2008.

    Top of International Conferences and Events; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Jobs, Internships, Volunteer Opportunities

    We Can Do will probably never be a comprehensive job-board. Serious job, internship, or volunteer placement hunters will want to explore other means of finding opportunities. For example, jobs, internships, and volunteer opportunities in the international field generally, or in the disability field generally, can sometimes be found at www.idealist.org. But I do occasionally happen to come across a job announcement. Here are a few that may still be open to applications:

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Education and Training Opportunities

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Missed Opportunities

    Missed call for papers; Missed training opportunities; Missed job, internship, and volunteer opportunities; Missed events and conferences

    Some of the material I post at We Can Do is time-sensitive material. That means the conferences announced here have come and gone; job posts have been filled; and deadlines are over. So, if it’s too late for you to do anything about any of the following announcements, then why bother listing them? First, some conference organizers issue compilations of papers and presentations or other interesting materials after their event is over. If a topic interests you, it may be worth communicating with event organizers to see if any follow-up publications are available. Second, organizations that offer one conference, job opportunity, call for papers, etc., may offer something similar in the future. Many conferences, for example, meet every one, two, three, or four years. Monitoring, joining, or communicating with organizations of interest to you could help ensure that you learn about the next opportunity in time to plan for it.

    Top of Missed Opportunities; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Missed Call for Papers
    The German Journal for Disability and Development called for papers on art and disabilities to be submitted by the end of November 2007.

    Also browse through the listing of upcoming conferences and missed conferences.

    Top of Missed Opportunities; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Missed Training Opportunities

    In October 2007, the International Labour Organisation had a training course for professionals from developing countries.

    Top of Missed Opportunities; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Missed Jobs, Internships, and Volunteer Opportunities
    Remember that it is too late to apply for these specific opportunities. These are listed here in case you want to check out the sponsoring organizations for future opportunities like these:

    Top of Missed Opportunities; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    Missed Event and Conference Opportunities

    Top of Missed Opportunities; Table of Contents; Top of this page

    What’s Next for We Can Do?

    I am not yet satisfied with We Can Do. I still see many gaps that I want to repair. I want to find, and post, more materials of a pragmatic nature. By which I mean, material that people in the field can put to immediate use in improving the lives of disabled people in developing countries. If you think you can help me locate helpful materials, please review my Wish list for written materials and resources and contact me.

    I also want to reach more development professionals at mainstream development organizations and more employees and volunteers at international disability organizations. And I want to reach more small DPOs and individual advocates in more developing countries. The knowledge shared at We Can Do cannot help until it is brought to people with disabilities living in poverty in developing countries. That “final mile” can only be bridged by readers like YOU.

    If you want to help, I hope you will consider telling your colleagues and contacts about We Can Do. If you run a web site or a blog, please consider linking to We Can Do at https://wecando.wordpress.com. If you have the skills, the time, and the commitment to launch a We Can Do mirror site translation into some other language, please talk to me (leave a comment or email me at ashettle [at] patriot.net). And please do feel free to print out the more helpful We Can Do posts to share with people you know in developing countries who do not have easy access to the Internet.

    For those of you who like numbers: We Can Do had 285 page views in July; 851 in August; 1305 in September; 2936 in October; 4862 in November; and more than 5100 in the first three weeks of December. And who is responsible for making these numbers happen? Why—you, of course! So, thank you for visiting We Can Do.

    Table of Contents; Top of this page

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    MEMORANDUM, Commonwealth Disabled People’s Conference 2007

    Posted on 22 November 2007. Filed under: Announcements, Commonwealth Nations, Events and Conferences, Guest Blogger, Human Rights, News | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

    The Commonwealth Disabled People’s Conference met in early November in Kampala, Uganda. The following memorandum was issued at that conference.


    Dear Colleagues,

    It’s my pleasure to forward to you a memorandum of decisions made at the recently concluded Commonwealth Disabled peoples’ Conference. Attached to this memorandum is a shorter memorandum which was prepared specifically for sending to CHOGM (Commonwealth Heads of Governments Meeting).

    I hope these documents will enable those who are in a position to lobby their respective delegations to CHOGM to raise disability issues during the meeting.

    Yours Sincerely,

    James Mwandha.


    Draft

    MEMORANDUM OF THE COMMONWEALTH DISABLED PEOPLES’ CONFERENCE CONVENED IN KAMPALA FROM 4TH – 7TH NOVEMBER 2007

    Preamble

    The Commonwealth Disabled Peoples’ Conference convened in Kampala, Uganda from the 4th -7th November 2007;

    NOTING with appreciation the theme of this year’s CHOGM, ‘Transforming Commonwealth Societies to achieve political, economic and human development.’

    AWARE that Persons with disabilities are among the poorest of the poor and the most socially excluded,

    RECOGNISING the diversity of Persons with Disabilities,

    EMPHASISING the importance of mainstreaming disability issues as an integral part of relevant strategies of sustainable development,

    NOTING the adoption by the 61st UN General Assembly of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities,

    APPRECIATING that India and Jamaica have already ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities,

    RECOGNISING the importance of International cooperation for improving the living conditions of persons with disabilities in every country particularly in developing countries,

    The Conference hereby resolves as follows:

    1.0 APPRECIATION

    1. Appreciates the Government of Uganda for hosting the Commonwealth Disabled Peoples’ Conference and in particular the support given by Honourable Sayda Bbumba, Minister of, Gender, Labour and Social Development and Honourable Sulaiman Madada, Minister of State for Disability and Elderly Affairs.

    2. Thanks to the Right Honourable Rebecca Kadaga, Deputy Speaker of Uganda’s Parliament for officiating at the opening of the Conference and Honourable Okello Oryem, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs in charge of International Relations for performing the closing ceremony and offering to submit the conference memorandum to the Ugandan Head of State.

    3. Commends the Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the UK Government for sending a representative to the conference as an observer.

    4. Commends further the Uganda disability movement for the initiative taken to hold this first ever conference of Disabled People in the Commonwealth and the excellent arrangements and the hospitality accorded to the delegates.

    5. Appreciates the resource persons for the excellent presentations made at the Conference and at the side events.

    6. Notes with appreciation the countries that sent delegates to the conference namely: Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, United Kingdom, Zambia, and observers from Rwanda and Sudan.

    7. Recognises the participation of the President of the World Blind Union, the Secretariat of the African Decade of Persons with Disabilities, the East African Federation of the Disabled, the representative of the President of the World Federation of the Deaf, representatives of Leonard Cheshire Foundation International, and the office of the UN Commissioner for Human Rights.

    2.0 CONFERENCE RESOLUTIONS TO CHOGM

    8. Submits a short memorandum, appearing as annexture 1 to this memorandum, to CHOGM through the Uganda Minister of State for International Relations.

    9. Circulates the short memorandum to as many disabled people and their organisations in the Commonwealth as possible and call upon them to use it to lobby their respective delegations to advocate for disability issues in CHOGM.

    3.0 COMMONWEALTH DISABLED PEOPLES’ FORUM

    10. Establishes the Commonwealth Disabled Peoples’ Forum with Disabled Peoples’ Organisations (DPOs) in the Commonwealth constituting its membership.

    11. A steering committee consisting of Honourable James Mwandha (Uganda) Chair, Mr. Mark Harrison (UK), Mr. Thomas On’golo, Secretariat of the African Decade of Disabled Persons (South Africa), a representative from Canada and a representative from India.

    12. The steering committee to draw up their terms of reference for the establishment of the forum and convene a forum meeting within a period of ten months.

    13. The steering committee to dialogue with the Commonwealth Secretariat and register the forum with the Commonwealth Foundation.

    4.0 EQUALITY AND NON-DISCRIMINATION

    14. Recommends that data collection at all levels should include disaggregated data concerning disability to enable Governments to plan effectively for the inclusion of disabled people.

    15. Calls upon all governments to pass laws that promote equality and inclusion of disabled people in society and do away with laws that perpetuate discrimination and exclusion.

    16. Appeals to Governments and donors to resource DPOs to publicize the convention, sensitize the general public and help to implement the Convention.

    5.0 ROLE OF GOVERNMENTS, DISABLED PEOPLES’ ORGANISATIONS IN THE IMPLEMENTATION AND MONITORING OF THE CONVENTION

    A. Governments.

    17. Sign and ratify the Convention and enact laws to domesticate the convention and amend all laws, which negatively impact on disabled people.

    18. Translate the Convention document into the local languages and Sign Language to facilitate wider understanding of the rights of disabled people.

    19. Put in place programmes that create greater awareness in communities and within government systems relating to disability rights, and promote efforts that encourage positive attitudes towards disabled people.

    20. Mainstream disability in social, economic and political programmes and provide for representation of disabled people in the Parliaments, Local Councils and Statutory organizations.

    21. Provide access to rehabilitation, education, training, employment opportunities, cultural and sports activities, technical aids, Sign Language Interpretation Services and other assistive devices to facilitate mobility and independent daily living of disabled people.

    22. Develop special programmes to cater for the special needs of women, children and the elderly with disabilities.

    23. Strengthen DPOs and support creation of new ones, and promote representation of disabled people at local, national and international levels.

    24. Include a disability component in all Government budgets and budgetary allocations across all sectors and in all local governments and also to give visibility to disability in all government plans, programmes and activities.

    25. Build alliances with other countries, multilateral institutions and donor organizations to promote international cooperation in research, sharing information on best practices and funding for disability programmes.

    26. Disability as a cross cutting issue should be mainstreamed and prioritized in all the development planning, implementation, and monitoring processes of governments as a means of achieving the millennium development goals (MDGs).

    27. Governments should take special measures to protect persons with disabilities in all situations of conflicts, wars and catastrophes to alleviate the grave suffering caused to them.

    B. Disabled Peoples’ Organisations (DPOs)

    28. Lobby their Governments to sign and ratify the convention.

    29. Once the convention enters into force, lobby Governments and Parliament to enact laws to domesticate it.

    30. Ensure that disability issues are fully covered in the countries’ Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSPs) where applicable.

    31. Make alliances with other Civil Society organizations and create a common platform that includes disability concerns.

    32. Advocate for budgetary allocations at national level across all sectors and at all local levels.

    33. Participate actively in the monitoring and evaluation of the implementation of the convention at all levels.

    34. Partner with the media for dissemination of the convention and other information relating to disability rights.

    6.0 MONITORING: NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL

    35. Monitoring is an important aspect of the process of realizing the rights of people with disabilities.

    36. Governments should establish monitoring institutions that are well resourced and independent.

    37. Monitoring institutions should have adequate and effective representation by different categories of people with disabilities.

    38. The monitoring tools should be clear and shared with the key stakeholders.

    7.0 INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION AND INCLUSIVE DEVELOPMENT

    39. Development partners should provide technical and financial assistance to DPOs to address the challenges faced by people with disabilities.

    40. International Donors should ensure that people with disabilities are involved and benefiting from all bilateral and multilateral funded programmes.

    41. Disabled people and disability issues must be included in every development cooperation agenda of international development partners.

    42. The international development partners should promote south – south cooperation among DPOs and transfer resources directly to them.

    43. International development cooperation/ partnership should promote capacity building and technology support on disability issues to national Governments in the south in line with the UN convention.

    44. Development partners and donors should make funding conditional to addressing the concerns of disabled people and ensure that recipient countries of their development aid mainstream issues of disability in their plans and programmes.

    45. Investors and service providers should take into account the needs of disabled people when designing their projects.

    Dated this 7th day of November 2007


    ANNEXURE 1

    MEMORANDUM TO CHOGM

    Commonwealth Disabled Peoples’ Conference
    4th – 7th November 2007, Hotel Africana, Kampala, Uganda
    Final Communiqué

    This conference decides to send the following statement to the Commonwealth Heads of Government’s:

    Resolution From the Commonwealth Disabled People’s Conference to the CHOGM 2007

    Preamble
    NOTING with appreciation the theme of this years CHOGM,

    AWARE that Persons with disabilities are among the poorest of the poor and the most socially excluded,

    EMPHASING the importance of mainstreaming disability issues as an integral part of relevant strategies of sustainable development,

    NOTING the adoption by the 61st UN General Assembly of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities,

    APPRECIATING that India and Jamaica have already ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities,

    RECOGNISING the diversity of Persons with Disabilities,

    RECOGNISING FURTHER the importance of International cooperation for improving the living conditions of persons with disabilities in every country particularly in developing countries,

    Hereby recommends to the Commonwealth Heads of Government, meeting in Kampala from 23rd – 25th November 2007:

    That all Commonwealth countries:

    1. Ratify and implement the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disability and its Optional Protocol.

    2. Adopt disability as a crosscutting issue that should be mainstreamed in domestic policy and planning.

    3. Develop disability polices and programmes to cater for the concerns of Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) in line with article 32 of the UN Convention on International Development Cooperation.

    Adopted at Kampala, this 7th day of November 2007


    Thank you to James Mwandha at the Action on Disability and Development Uganda Programme (ADD Uganda) for granting permission to post this memorandum at We Can Do.


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    Commonwealth Disabled People’s Conference (Uganda, November 2007)

    Posted on 19 August 2007. Filed under: Announcements, Commonwealth Nations, Sub-Saharan Africa Region | Tags: , , , , |

    Edited Nov 22 ’07 to add this paragraph: This conference is now over. The conference participants issued a memorandum which has been posted at https://wecando.wordpress.com/2007/11/22/memorandum-commonwealth-disabled-peoples-conference-2007/.

    This conference announcement was recently brought to my attention; for people interested in disability rights and the political, economic, and human development of disabled people in the commonwealth countries:

    From: NKWANGU ROBERT
    Date: August 14, 2007 9:09:52 AM EDT
    Subject: COMMONWEALTH DISABLED PEOPLE’S CONFERENCE (NOVEMBER 2007)

    Dear all,
    Greetings from the deaf community in Uganda.
     
    This is to bring to your attention the impending Commonwealth Disabled People’s Conference (DPC), 2007.
     
    The conference will take place from 14th to 17th November in Kampala, Uganda – East Africa at Hotel Africana.
     
    Disabled Persons Organizations (DPOs) in Uganda, in conjunction with Action on Disability and Development (ADD), an International non-government organization, have realized the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) that is going to take place in Uganda from 23rd to 25th November, 2007, under the theme: “Transforming Commonwealth Societies to achieve political, economic and human development” is a great opportunity for the disability fraternity in common wealth countries as it comes in the wake of the adoption of the Convention on the Rights and Dignity of Persons with Disabilities. The CHOGM offers the opportunity to influence heads of governments and to initiate collective action for its ratification and implementation.
     
    Uganda is currently one of the leading countries in legislations and policies that cater for the rights of PWDs. Its pertinent that Kampala CHOGM will initiate the inclusion of disability on the commonwealth agenda making it a part of the commonwealth member states programs.
     
    The commonwealth has 52 member states. The commonwealth has two components – the official and unofficial components. The official component consists of a series of official inter-governmental meetings. The unofficial component is made up of programs by Civil Society Organizations.
     
    The Disabled People’s Conference (DPC). The first ever of its kind in liaison with CHOGM will be held just before the Commonwealth People’s Forum and the CHOGM with a view of making disability a part of the commonwealth agenda.
     
    The theme of the conference is: “Promoting Disability Rights: the inclusive way of transforming commonwealth countries to achieve political, economic and human development”.
     
    The conference is aimed at bringing leaders of the disabled in the commonwealth with a view to:
    1 Influence heads of states and commonwealth governments to incorporate disability issues in their national programs.
    2 Raising CHOGM awareness about the Convention on the Rights of the Disabled persons and the need for its ratification and implementation.
    3 Creating an understanding that poverty cannot be eradicated in the commonwealth countries unless disabled people are explicitly included in country development strategies.
    4 Establishing a forum foe disabled people in the commonwealth as a continuing feature of the commonwealth family.
     
    The purpose of this communication therefore is to request you to participate in this conference as a one sure way of uplifting the status of the disabled people in the commonwealth and the rest of the world.
     
    Alternatively, your support to this event will be highly appreciated.
     
    Waiting for your positive response.
     
    Thank you.
     
    Yours
    ROBERT NKWANGU,
    Conference Organizing Committee
    Representative for the Deaf persons.
    Uganda National Association of the Deaf (UNAD)
    P.O.Box 7339,
    Kampala, Uganda
    East Africa.


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