NEWS: European Union, Africa Cooperate in Support of Disabled People Living in Poverty

Posted on 6 February 2008. Filed under: Agriculture and Rural Development, Announcements, Cross-Disability, Inclusion, News, Sub-Saharan Africa Region | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The EU-Africa strategy – working to support the rights and needs of persons with disabilities living in chronic poverty


The Secretariat of the Africa Decade of Persons with Disabilities (SADPD) notes with appreciation the inclusion of disability in the Africa-EU Strategic Partnership: A Joint Africa-EU Strategy (the Strategy).

The context, shared vision, principles and objectives of the Strategy offer unprecedented opportunities to address the needs, human rights and aspirations of disabled people in both Europe and Africa. The new approaches and strategies outlined in the declaration are all relevant to the needs and priorities of disabled people in Africa. We would like to urge African governments to take primary responsibility to ensure that all the provisions on the Strategy mainstream disability at all levels of planning, implementation and evaluation of programmes.

Disabled people in Africa can play a useful role in promoting peace and stability, strengthening the principles of democracy and human rights and contributing to the objectives for trade and regional integration. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) cannot be attained without the active participation of disabled people on the African continent.

We believe that development cooperation must ensure that disability is mainstreamed in all programmes and that specific support should be provided to organisations, government departments and other entities with disability programmes and projects. We welcome the inclusion of gender equality and issues related to the environment and climate change. The latter issues have a negative impact on the quality of life of disabled people all over Africa and disabled people’s role in promoting the required changes should be recognised and supported.

Issues related to migration and agriculture/ food security are top priorities as disabled people are caught in various unfavourable situations that threaten their ability to survive. We pledge our support to initiatives that promote the active involvement of disabled people, not just as consumers of agricultural produce, but also as producers within all the essential processes of the food value-chain.

We would like to thank our partners, DSI/ Danida, Sida, DFID, ODG, Southern Africa Trust, and CBM for their support to the Secretariat’s programmes and initiatives.

We extend our thanks and gratitude to the African Union (AU), ARI and African Parliamentarians/ leaders for their support for disability inclusion in Africa and within the Strategy.

END OF STATEMENT from the Secretariat of the African Decade of Persons with Disabilities

The above statement was taken from the web site for the Secretariat of the African Decade of Persons with Disabilities; you can view the same statement at

We Can Do readers who are interested in the EU/Africa partnership may also wish to read a letter to the African Union chair titled “Working to support the rights and needs of persons with disabilities living in chronic poverty”, available in PDF format (73 Kb) at:

A draft discussion of the strategy to be used in the EU/Africa partnership can be downloaded in PDF format (1.5 Mb) at:

There is also a web page about the join EU/Africa strategy:

We Can Do found this press release by exploring the web site for the Secretariat of the African Decade of Persons with Disabilities. I recommend that We Can Do readers may wish to explore their training materials on disability-related issues.

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.

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