Finding, Publicizing Disability Organizations

Posted on 6 August 2008. Filed under: Announcements, Cross-Disability, Opportunities, Resources | Tags: , , , , , |

People now have one more way that they can look for organizations run by and for people with disabilities around the world. And Disabled Peoples’ Organizations have one more way they can make sure that people around the world are able to learn about their organization and the work they do.

The United Nations Enable website, which focuses on people with disabilities, has a new listing of Civil Society organizations that focus on disability issues:

Follow the link above to find organizations in the region or country that interests you.

If you want your organization to be added to their list, then you can send an email to with the following information:

1. The name of your organization

2. The website address (URL) for your organization

3. The country or region in which your organization carries out its activities

Looking for more DPOs? Look at some of the other relevant blog posts at We Can Do that have more leads on finding disability-related organizations around the world.

Don’t have a website for your organization yet? Don’t have enough resources to establish one on your own? The organization DanishKadah is accepting applications from DPOs that need free webhosting services to establish accessible websites for them. Follow the link to learn more details.

Please note that any inquiries relating to the UN Enable listing should be directed to, NOT to We Can Do. Inquiries about applying for free web hosting services should be directed to DanishKadah, NOT to We Can Do.

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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.

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FORUM: Civil Society Organizations at World Bank, International Monetary Fund

Posted on 23 February 2008. Filed under: Announcements, Events and Conferences, Opportunities | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), including those involved with disability issues, have an opportunity to meet with staff members at the World Bank Group (WBG) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Washington, DC, USA, April 10-13, 2008. Organizations interested in sending a representative must apply for accreditation by March 23, 2008.

Each year, the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund hold two major joint meetings. The larger of these, called the “Annual Meetings,” is held in the fall. A similar but smaller set of meetings, called the “Spring Meetings,” is held in the spring. The 2008 Spring Meetings is held over the weekend of April 12-13, 2008.

Also each year, representatives of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) may participate in a Program of Policy Dialogues for Civil Society Organizations (CSOs). The World Bank and International Monetary Fund civil society teams will also be offering an Orientation Session on the World Bank and IMF for interested CSO representatives attending the 2008 Spring Meetings.

The World Bank Group makes loans to the governments of developing countries to support projects to reduce poverty; improve infrastructure; and bring education, clean water, health services, and electricity to more poor people. The International Monetary Fund, among other things, advises country governments on their economic policies and lends money to governments to help them correct balance of payments problems. Thus, the World Bank is focused on fighting poverty, while the IMF is focused more on broader macroeconomic issues.

For more information about the participation of Civil Society Organizations, go to the page on the 2008 Spring Meeting targeted at representatives of Civil Society Organizations

Be sure to read all the information at the above link carefully before you decide whether it would be suitable to your interests to attend. For example, this is NOT the forum to attend if you are looking for concrete guidance on how to start a new project for disabled people in your country. This will NOT be an opportunity to ask for funding for your organization. You will NOT receive advice on improving or strengthening your organization.

However, if you represent a larger, more stable organization that is able to take a very long view on your future activities, then this forum might be suitable for you. It may help you learn more about the World Bank and the IMF. (If this interests you, then you will be particularly interested in the April 9 Orientation Session. Please note that regisration for the orientation session is handled separately from registration for the Policy Dialogues for Civil Society Organizations in general.)

Attending this event can also give you the chance to participate in many policy dialogue sessions. These sessions will bring together staff from the Bank and Fund; CSO representatives; government officials; and other individuals. People will use these sessions to discuss important issues that will be addressed during the 2008 Spring Meetings. This could be an opportunity to share your thoughts and learn from the perspectives of other participants.

Also, the IMF/WB Civil Society Team staff can help facilitate contacts between your civil society organization and journalists during the forum. You can also leave print materials about your organization at a table in the Press Room for journalists to pick up.

If you are reading this before March 15, 2008 then you may wish to consider submitting a proposal to host your own, two-hour session as part of the Civil Society Policy Forum. (Perhaps a session on disability inclusion in development?) Proposals should be short and should include the title, topic, and expected outcome of the panel. Also indicate who (if anyone) from the World Bank or the IMF you would like to be a part of the session. Send proposals by 5 p.m. EST, March 15, 2008, via email to

We Can Do learned about this opportunity for Civil Society Organizations at the World Bank’s CommNet blog at

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

Also at We Can Do: catch up with the news; explore resources, toolkits, or funding and fellowship opportunities that might be helpful for your organization; find research, reports, papers, or statistics; or look up conferences, events, call for papers, or education/training opportunities.

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: and If you are reading this anywhere else, then you are most likely reading a web site that regularly plagiarizes the work of other people.

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Finding Development Organizations and Resources

Posted on 14 October 2007. Filed under: Announcements, Resources | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Small, local DPOs (Disabled People Organizations) can be a valuable resource for disabled people in the communities where they work. But they cannot fight poverty and oppression among disabled people (or Deaf people) on their own. No single organization can.

Because of this, many DPOs may wish to reach out to larger, mainstream organizations. For example, perhaps you want support in persuading a micro-entrepreneural program to do a better job of including disabled would-be business owners in their training programs. Or you want to make sure the new water pump being installed in the village where you live or work is accessible for the many women in the community who have lost one or both arms due to land-mine accidents. How do you find organizations that might help? Or, how do you contact the organizations that are already working in your community or country?

In some cases, well-intended international organizations may implement projects that inadvertently create barriers for people with disabilities in your country. They may build schools without ramps. Or they offer training programs but fail to obtain sign language interpreters so that deaf people can participate in them. In most cases, this may be due to ignorance. They may lack experience with disabilities and fail to realize that the way in which they implement their programs can create problems for disabled people. Or they may even mistakenly assume that “there are no disabled people in this village” or that “disabled people aren’t interested in participating in this program” or “this program is for everyone, therefore disabled people are already included.” It can sometimes be worth the effort to reach out to these organizations to alert them to potential barriers for people with disabilities in your community and to offer your knowledge and advice in removing these barriers.

One starting point would be a listing from the World Bank entitled “Related Links, or Who’s Who in Disability and Development” at

Here, you will find a list of multi-lateral donors and bi-laterial donors; civil society organizations; organizations committed to corporate social responsibility (i.e., businesses that try to behave responsibily in the communities and countries where they operate); foundations; bibliographic sources; sources for statistics; and technology (internet accessibility). If you’re looking for disability-related statistics, then you may also wish to see an earlier We Can Do post entitled “Numbers Don’t Feed People” for links to more resources.

In case you didn’t already know: Multi-lateral donors are development banks like the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, Inter-American Development Bank and so forth. These are generally supported with donations from dozens of country governments. Their budget is used to make loans that support the country governments of developing countries in establishing development projects like roads, water and other infrastructure, schools, training programs for medical personnel, and so forth. Bi-lateral donors are individual country governments, like the United States or Japan, that make their grants or loans directly to the countries they support. Usually multi-lateral and bi-lateral donors do not directly fund smaller, local organizations: if you wish to receive funding from these organizations you may need to work through your country’s government. However, in some cases, these donors have made commitments to ensure that the projects they already support are accessible to people with disabilities. They may welcome your feedback and insights on how to do a better job of including disabled people in their programs.

DPOs may wish to explore the web sites for mainstream development banks, civil society organizations, and other mainstream organizations. This would allow you to become familiar with the development projects they support in your area. You could then contact the organization to start a dialogue to help ensure that these projects do not ignore or overlook the needs of people with disabilities in your country.

What about the other side of the equation? What if you’re a large, mainstream development organization that wants to find disabled people in the communities where you work so you can make sure your projects are accessible to them? One of the earliest posts I wrote for We Can Do, entitled “Finding Local Disability Organizations” should be suitable for your needs. You may also want to explore the many links in the We Can Do blogroll, posted at the right hand side and also at the very bottom of every page at We Can Do.

(Full disclosure alert: Yes, I currently work at the World Bank. However, I do not work directly on disability-related issues there. I maintain the We Can Do blog in my own time. Information posted here cannot be interpreted as speaking in any way for the World Bank or any unit or department within the Bank.)

If you have been to We Can Do before then you may have noticed that this blog has a new appearance and structure. How do you like it? Do you find it easier, or harder, to navigate and find the information you’re looking for? Any other feedback on how to improve the We Can Do blog in general? Please share your thoughts in the comments area at the post where I describe We Can Do’s new presentation or email me at ashettle at patriot dot net.

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