South Africa: Career Guidance Can Keep Disabled Kids From Slipping Through the Cracks
By Maximus Monaheng Sefotho, University of Pretoria
More than two million South African children who are disabled risk slipping between the cracks of education and employment without real guidance and support.
People living with mental or physical disabilities worldwide are targets of either outright abuse or more subtle discrimination and social exclusion. Disabled South Africans struggle to find jobs and are often vulnerable to being unceremoniously sacked or badly treated.
Career development could be used to bolster disabled youngsters' confidence and show them what jobs are available after school. It is also a valuable tool to teach disabled learners about their rights as a prospective employee. Sadly, though, it is not an area that South Africa's education system takes very seriously.
Career guidance: crucial for all
Employment and education are two interlinked systems that are fundamental to human growth and development. Career development is the nexus between these systems.
Career development at South African schools is taught as part of life orientation. It is treated only as "the world of work" within this subject's curriculum. But research shows us that for people to forge successful, fulfilling career paths, career development can't just be an afterthought.
There have been calls for life orientation to be scrapped as an examinable subject. It has also been criticised for being too easy and some learners say it's a waste of time.
This antipathy means that the little career guidance offered at school is probably largely ignored - a terrible waste. At its best, career guidance gives learners a platform to make meaning of their existence by constructing careers that will help them carve out worthwhile livelihoods.
How to make it happen
So what needs to be done if career development is to become a priority in South Africa's schools? For starters, teachers need ongoing professional training to understand the importance of career development for their disabled learners.
At the same time, school guidance counsellors need to be trained - partly to relieve pressure on already overburdened teachers who can't be expected to put their other work on the backburner and focus solely on career development.
School management and governing bodies would have tremendous support from these counsellors, who can not only offer specialised support to disabled learners but can develop career management programmes.
Some of the work will need to be done beyond school grounds. Millions of young South Africans are unemployed. Why not train them as guidance officers to provide career information within communities to both their age peers and adults? This could provide employment for the youth, motivate a push for further education and, critically, provide the career guidance that so many learners simply aren't getting in class.
Finally, the business world can benefit by identifying early career interns through school programmes. That's a smart, proactive way to address South Africa's skills shortage and, pragmatically, for businesses to fulfil their legal obligation to employ disabled people.
Government kicks out disabled persons from Nyandarua institute
The Standard Digital News (satire) (press release) (registration) (blog)
BY JAMES MUNYEKI Updated Thursday, July 2nd 2015 at 00:00 GMT +3
: Bomet Governor Isaac Ruto when he distributed more than 1,500 assistive devices to Persons living with disability in Bomet County on Saturday. Ruto said there were still more people living with disability who are still being hidden by their families. (PHOTO BY GILBERT KIMUTAI/STANDARD)
NYANDARUA: The Government has ordered some 15 persons living with disabilities together with their families to move out of Nyandarua Vocational Rehabilitation Training Institute premises. They have lived in the premises for the last three decades. Last week, the institute wrote to the families asking them to leave to enable the staff and trainers to enjoy the facilities. They have since vowed not to vacate, claiming they have nowhere to move to. According to their spokesman Robert Kinyua: “This is our only home which we were given by the Moi Government and yet we are being told to vacate. We depend solely on artistic works to make a living,” he said.
Mangoma says Zanu PF worsened his disabilityNew Zimbabwe.com-
RENEWAL Democrats of Zimbabwe leader, Elton Mangoma, has ruled out any coalition with Joice Mujuru’s People First project, accusing the former vice president of presiding over a system which he said worsened his disability.
Mangoma got polio at a tender age resulting in him being permanently disabled but on Wednesday he claimed his disability worsened in March 2007 when he was assaulted by police following his arrest in Highfields.
“When I was arrested, I was thoroughly beaten up and my knee cap shattered which forced me to undergo a reconstructive surgery.
"If anyone increased my disability it is Zanu PF. You can also understand who the vice president was when I was beaten. How do we work together under such circumstances?” said Mangoma in reference to Mujuru.
Mangoma, who was addressing journalists at the Bulawayo Press Club, said his party has decided to abandon the MDC brand and adopt a new logo and name.
“We have chosen a flying bird as our new logo. The logo simplifies freedom.
"The people from provinces who have been disgruntled with the goings on in the Renewal Team decided on this new logo and name at the party’s launch in June,” said Mangoma.
The former energy minister said his party decided to disown the MDC brand because "it has lost value".
“There are some people who think the MDC brand still has value.
"Our view is that it no longer has value. If anything, it has got negative value and that is the reason why we are making a clean break away from it,” he said.
Nigerian Group Provides Training for People with DisabilityVOA Learning English
An estimated 20 million people in Nigeria have physical disabilities. A group of disabled men in Kaduna state are encouraging others to get off the street by empowering them with new skills.
Turning Nigeria's Disabled to Workers
In Nigeria, an estimated 20 million people have some kind of physical disability. They have physical problems that make it difficult to find work and hold a job. Some of the disabled end up on city streets, asking strangers for help. But in Kaduna State, a group of disabled men has been persuading others to get off the street by offering them new skills.
Our story begins outside the offices of a local charity. A group of men who are physically disabled wait there for food from the aid group. It may be the only meal they get that day. Because the men are disabled, most depend on begging in the streets to support themselves.
Aliyu Yakubu is unlike those men. He is learning job skills to earn a living wage. He is being shown how to fix tricycles and do other metal work.
The 18-year-old remembers when he decided to stop begging.
He says, “My former class prefect saw me begging on the street and didn’t recognize me. He gave me some money. When I stretched my hand out to collect it, then he saw my face. I felt ashamed, and since then, I decided not to beg again.”
Isiaka Maaji is also physically disabled. He helps people like Aliyu Yakubu get work, and get off the streets. He teaches them a trade.
He learned his skills from a government-operated training program. The program has been teaching vocational work since 2002. Five years ago, Mr. Maaji started helping other disabled people to stop begging.
He says, “We encourage people like us to learn skills they can do to become self-reliant to support themselves and their families because being in the streets as beggars is a disgrace to all of us.
To date, he has helped and trained 30 people. Some of them even have their own metal-working businesses now. They make tricycles and motor bikes designed for handicapped individuals. But that is not all they make. They also make doors and windows to sell.
Ridwan Abdillahi is a member of the Handicapped Association and a business owner. He says the group is making good quality products, but people are not buying. He says he believes many people think goods made by the disabled are not as good as those made by others.
The disabled men waiting for a meal say this is one more barrier the disabled face. They say that with the help of the government and community, they will overcome it, by bringing people’s attention to their concerns.
I’m Anne Ball.
Mohammed Yusuf reported on this story from Kaduna, Nigeria. Anne Ball adapted it for Learning English. George Grow was the editor.
Princess Sikhanyiso meets Miss Deaf AfricaThe Swazi Observer-
Stories by Samukelisiwe Ginindza
imageNICE TO MEET YOU: Princess Sikhanyiso and patron of Miss Deaf Africa smiles as she receives a gift from Miss Deaf Africa Tlhokomelo Sabole during their official meeting on Saturday at Happy Valley Resort. (Pics: Samukelisiwe Ginindza).
Miss Deaf Africa patron Princess Sikhanyiso met with Miss Deaf Africa Tlhokomelo Sabole.
The beauty queen met with the princess at an event attended by senior government officials, namely; Deputy Prime Minister Paul Dlamini, Hhohho Regional Administrator Prince Tsekedi, Executive Director of Youth Development from Lesotho and Miss Deaf Africa Ambassador Jack Avondo, joined by her delegation of five from the kingdom of Lesotho.
In her remarks, Tlhokomelo stated that as a queen she would focus more on the media, especially television, as it was high time programmes focused on Signing Language. “Since we use our sight to hear, television programmes should also cater for us and I beg you Your Highness to help me achieve this dream,” she said.
She added that it was her dream was to see Miss Deaf Africa 2016 being hosted in the mountainous Kingdom of Lesotho. “I consider myself as Imbali and I will also honour Her Royal Highness’ invitation to attend the Umhlanga ceremony,” she added.
Princess Sikhanyiso then wished the beauty queen a good reign filled with respect, humility and to also achieve all the things that she had hoped to achieve as a young girl. Lebo to compete in Miss Africa contest
Reigning Miss Swaziland Tourism 2014/15 Lebo Maseko has been invited to partake in the inaugural of Miss Africa. The pageant will take place in a few months in South Africa and all the 55 countries in the continent are expected to participate. Miss Swaziland Tourism is hosted by the Imbali Foundation, whose patron is Princess Sikhanyiso.
An invitation to participate in the annual international beauty pageant run by ProAct Communications was extended to the Miss Swaziland Tourism pageant by the pageant’s Founder and Chairman Neo Mashishi on Saturday at the Happy Valley Resort.
This was during the official meeting between Princess Sikhanyiso and Miss Deaf Africa Tlhokomelo Sabole. Princess Sikhanyiso was honoured by this invitation and stated that the tourism queen would partake in this pageant.
“We are honoured by the invitation to represent the Kingdom of Eswatini in such a platform and we will be taking part knowing that such a pageant’s mission is to honour the girl child,” she stated. She went on to add that this would also enhance the kingdom’s image to visitors to the country and position the country as a rare gem and mysterious to the world.
Sabole, who is a Lesotho National, was also invited as a guest of honour to be part of the pageant, which is set to make Africa an even better place and continent.
Princess Sikhanyiso enlightened many on Saturday at Happy Valley Resort during her official meeting with Miss Deaf Africa 2015 Tlhokomelo Sabole. She stated that people should stop referring to people living with disabilities as impaired because it simply means they lack the understanding of the culture, humour and art of them.
“These people are not impaired as many like to refer to them, they are just different from us but they play sport, drive cars and have humour it’s just that they do it different from us, so as we strive for His Majesty’s vision for 2022 let us not exclude them as they contribute to the economy,” she explained.
As a patron of the pageant, the princess has taken it upon herself to learn Sign Language and has seen the importance of it being taught in schools, as it is as important as English.
“There are over 200 different Sign Languages in the world. Sign Language has evolved over the years, so it is up to us to familiarise with it, to make deaf people’s lives easier to communicate with us, as whether we do not see nor hear them, they are human beings,” she added.
The princess went on to add that every parent with a deaf child should treat that child as they would any other, because as per statistics declare, over 70 percent of these parents do not communicate with their children by Sign Language.
“Deaf people take pride in who they are, they never pray to God to cure them and they are just another part of God’s creation, so they should be treated equally,” she explained.
Nokuthula Mbatha’s work noted
Former Miss Deaf Swaziland and Miss Deaf Africa Director Nokuthula Mbatha’s hard work has not gone unnoticed as she has been promoted to the executive director or head of Miss Deaf Africa. Mbatha was applauded for her passion towards this pageant by Miss Deaf Ambassador Jack Avondo from Spain, who stated that the hard work she had put towards the pageant had paid off.
Miss Deaf 2015 Tlhokomelo Sabole reiterated Avondo’s statement, adding that Mbatha had been one of the people who made her life easier as she helped her with many things on her reign.
“Thanks to Her Royal Highness and Nokuthula Mbatha, who works really hard tirelessly. Many thanks also go out to the Imbali Foundation for the crown, it is amazing and I adore it,” she said.
In her remarks, Mbatha stated that she was almost emotional for many reasons, however, she was humbled by the support she had been receiving, even beyond Swaziland.
She went on to wish Sabole a successful reign and wished her to reign with respect and humility. She pledged her support for Sabole throughout her reign.
The event was attended by senior government officials, Deputy Prime Minister Paul Dlamini, Hhohho Regional Administrator Prince Tsekedi, Executive Director of Youth Development from Lesotho and Miss Deaf Africa Ambassador Jack Avondo.
Uganda: UCU's Deaf Girl Beats 1,300 StudentsAllAfrica.com-
A partially-deaf girl last week emerged the overall best student in part one of the 16th graduation of Uganda Christian University (UCU).
Ruth Kaghala Mukova scored a cumulative grade point average (CGPA) of 4.
75 in Bachelor of Child Development and Children's Ministry. Mukova whose disability was detected while in senior three, was among 1,319 students who graduated with diplomas and degrees in Mukono on Friday.
She told The Observer after the graduation ceremony that she nearly dropped out of school after her senior four examinations because of hearing difficulties.
"After my S4 in 2007, I stayed home for a full year because my hearing problem had worsened to the extent that I almost told my mum that I no longer want to go to school," Mukova.
Inspired by her ambition to improve the standards of children in her area, who she claims that they have been widely abandoned, Mukova consulted her friends to explain whatever she missed in class due to her hearing problem.
"I would sit in front but still I would not clearly get what the lecturer said; so, I would go to my friends to fully explain to me," said Mukova.
Ruth's mother, Betty Mukova, described her daughter as a fighter who never gave up at any moment but perused her dream with passion.
UCU vice-chancellor John Senyonyi said women continued to outclass their male counterparts academically. Out of the1,319 graduands, he said, 53 percent were women..
Bank of Uganda Deputy Governor Louis Kasekende, who was the chief guest, warned the graduands against wanting to get quick money through fraudulent means.
"My message to you dear graduands is that 'be patient!' Rome was not built in one day," Kasekende said, cautioning against running abroad for casual jobs."Do not despair! There are still opportunities here and be ready to explore them."
Disabled woman defies all oddsThe Zimbabwean-
In a recent visit to Chipinge CLAYTON MASEKESA interviewed a brave widow who is repackaging and distributing juice to earn a living.
Irene Pikirai - This suggests that disability does not mean inability.
Physically disabled Irene Pikirai moves around in her wheelchair as she repackages and distributes flavoured Jersey Juice drinks to earn a living for herself and her children.
“I am pleased to say that the market for the drinks is growing steadily and I am now in need of additional capital to boost and grow my business,” she said in an interview.
Before her business took off, this indomitable woman approached several micro-finance institutions in Chipinge to apply for credit, but without much success. It was as though most financial institutions did not believe that someone with a disability was worthy of receiving credit.
However, she persevered and eventually managed to get a loan from Finmark Finance. The company’s loans officer, Jerry Takawira, said there were many people in in a similar situation to that of Pikirai.
“They successfully operate businesses, but because of their disabilities they are not able to access micro finance services. This is in direct contrast to the United Nations' (1993, 2007) assertion that persons with disabilities have the right to equal opportunities,” said Takawira
“Our company has mechanisms in place to deal with the inclusion of disabled persons. We are working with the National Disabled Persons of Zimbabwe (NDPZ) in search of intervention models to improve access to mainstream micro finance services for persons with disabilities,” he said.
“After several discussions with stakeholders, we targeted disabled people as beneficiaries. We concluded that disabled people were a needy group and that they should be classified under a lower cost compared to the prices paid by their able bodied counterparts,” said Takawira
Fortunately for Pikirai, she was one of the beneficiaries of Finmark Finance's positive policy. She received business management training offered by the finance company and after completion of the training she applied for and was allocated a $1 000 loan in 2012.
Fear of disabled
“The training that I received motivated me to apply for a loan. They told me to join a group to identify with, but this was a struggle because other people seemed to be afraid of me because of my disability,” she said.
“I went back to Finmark Finance and told them that other people were not willing to work with me and I cried in their offices. Getting my loan took another twist because many people in the groups doubted my ability. They saw me as a bigger risk because of my disability. But, I managed to convince them as an individual when I was granted the loan,” she said.
She started repackaging and distributing Jersey Juice in 2012 and today Pikirai can boast that she runs a successful business. She now distributes the beverage to various supermarkets in Chipinge, has managed to employ eight people,purchased a truck for distributing goods and repaid her loan.
Disability is not inability
“It has been a long road to success, but it also serves as a good reminder that disability does not mean inability. I am rightfully proud of what I have managed to achieve with the loan I received - especially in light of the fact that some of the able-bodied who once feared and despised me, have failed to repay their loans,” she said.
“I was subjected to a 15% extra savings on top of the mandatory 30% needed to qualify for a loan. I paid back the loan in a shorter period, which caused many women to realise that I am just as good as they are. I recently got a second loan and used this to expand my business to include foodstuff, charcoal and firewood, which will bring in a larger regular income,” she said.
“Now I no longer have to wait for well-wishers to provide for my family needs. I am happy that my two children go to good schools and that people respect me. I am also very pleased that I have improved the lives of the people I employ. They are now able to send their children to school and are to put food on their tables,” Pikirai said.
Takawira said Pikirai’s story illustrates that it is possible for persons with disabilities to access mainstream micro finance services and reap the benefits
“Barriers hindering active persons with disabilities from accessing micro financing can be addressed and will gradually be removed,” said Takawira.
Pikirai believes that the barriers hindering the inclusion of persons with disabilities into obtaining loans have been identified through her story and that micro finance projects should increase assisting persons with disabilities.
Medical personnel harass disabled peopleThe Zimbabwean
PAMENUS TUSO reports on the traumatic experiences of physically disabled people who experience discrimination and hostility when trying to access medical information, assistance and services.
Widow and HIV/AIDS activist Zifa Moyo’s husband died in 2007 after a long illness. Moyo has been living with HIV for the past three years and says accessing information about the disease and obtaining support services has proved to be a nightmare for her.
“The traumatic experience started when I first went for a HIV test. I walk with the aid of crutches and there were no special facilities for the disabled so I was forced to stand in a queue for hours with able-bodied people.
Everyone was staring at me and they made me feel very uncomfortable. Because of the unfriendly and hostile environment, I gave up after a few hours and returned home,” said Moyo.
However, after a few days at home, she built up her courage again and decided to go back to the New Start centre.
“This time I went straight to the testing room where I was subjected to a barrage of questions about my disability as well as the possible cause of my HIV status. Since openly revealing my HIV status, I have been stigmatised. It’s like most people believe that HIV is reserved for able-bodied people only.
They don’t realise that HIV can affect anyone who is sexually active, regardless of their physical condition,” said Moyo.
She said she had also been unable to access cervical cancer screening services at government health centres in the city because of her condition.
Abuse of the blind
Lindiwe Sibanda, a visually impaired mother, told this reporter that she had been abused and discriminated against on two occasions at Mpilo Hospital in Bulawayo.
“I developed a heart problem in 2004 while I was pregnant. When I went to Mpilo Hospital for a medical examination, the doctor examined me with the curtains around the bed open. My sister, who accompanied me, complained to the doctor, but he said that there was no need for privacy since I cannot see,” said Sibanda. Sibanda again suffered abuse and discrimination at the same health centre in 2013 after she had a stroke. “I was admitted at the hospital for two weeks. During my stay, nurses would place tablets on my locker and expect me to take the correct dose at the right times despite them all being aware that I am blind and not able to read the instructions on the medication. Due to this mistreatment, I was forced to find an alternate hospital where the rights of people with disabilities are respected,” said Sibanda.
Mentally impaired child
Lindiwe Mumpande, the mother of a 14-year-old boy with a mental disability, related that she and her son had experienced abuse and ridicule at Njube Clinic in Bulawayo.
“Last year, I took my sick son to Njube Clinic to seek treatment for him. Medical staff at the reception said that my son did not require any medical attention because he was mentally challenged. I tried in vain to explain to them that he was really sick and needed urgent medical attention, but they refused to listen to me,” she said.
The chairperson of the National Disability Board, Chrispen Manyuke, expressed concern over the exclusion of disabled people from HIV/AIDS programmes. Because of this exclusion a large number of disabled people, particularly disabled women, have been infected with HIV.
“National programmes run by various institutions who receive the government AIDS levy have tried to include disabled people in their programmes. The methodology has either been deliberately conscripted not to let the disabled run their own programmes, or construed that disabled people are not capable of running their own HIV programmes. We feel that the AIDS levy should be equitably distributed to all, including the disability sector that forms more than 10% of the population,” said Manyuke.
Phillimon Simwaba, director of the Disability HIV and AIDS Trust (DHAT), a regional non-governmental organisation that promotes the rights, health and capacity building of persons with disabilities, said his organisation had rolled out various programmes to enable the disabled to claim their rights and access quality, appropriate information and services on TB, HIV and sexual reproductive health.
“Our strategic goal is to ensure inclusion and participation of People Living with Disabilities (PWDs) in all our health and socio-economic developmental interventions. These include policy and legislation, national sexual reproductive health, TB, HIV and AIDS strategies, programmes, budgets and other emerging global and national issues. We are also building the capacity of persons with disabilities with various livelihoods projects as well as advocating for policy influence, “said Simwaba.
People with disabilities, particularly women, continue to suffer sexual and reproductive health rights violations despite the fact that the government has ratified the United Nations convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Gambia: Federation for the Disabled Receives 500 Lenses From SpainAllAfrica.com
The Gambia Federation for the Disabled (GFD) recently received donation of about 500 myopia, longsighted, and shortsighted lenses from two Spanish: Javier De La Morena and Karmen Louzao.
The lenses are geared towards improving the sights of people with visual problems.The presentation of the materials was held at GOVI resource centre in Kanifing.
Ebrima Dibasey, GFD executive director, thanked the donors for the gesture, saying it would go a long way in helping people with visual impairment.
He said before they give the lenses to anyone, they would engage health workers in hospitals for the right prescriptions to be able to provide suitable lens to the individual.
The GFD executive director said the organisation is engaged in different areas all geared towards improving the living standard of people with disabilities.
Mr Dibasey said their programmes, supported by partners, are "drastically reducing" the number of disabled people in the streets.
Karmen Louzao, one of the donors, said the process of bringing lenses to The Gambia began when she decided to bring some for a Gambian friend who had visual problem.
She said after that, they asked many of their friends in Spain to provide them with lenses for onward donation to The Gambia.That was how they were able to raise the 500 lenses donated to the GFD.
Javier De La Morena, a donor, urged GFD to get the right prescriptions from doctors so that they would be able to provide statistics for right lenses in the future.
The Spanish said they are ready for a stronger collaboration with the GFD.
The coordinator and board member of GFD, Lamin Manneh, expressed appreciation to the donors, saying the GFD is looking forward to having a strong and lasting collaboration with them.
Zimbabwe: Disabled Vendors Cry Foul, Plead for a Special RegistrationAllAfrica.com-
Zimbabwe: Dzamara Rally - Sibanda, Mliswa Urge Mass Action Against Mugabe
AS the local authority battles to remove vendors operating in central Harare, people living with disabilities said the designated places being allocated which are on the outskirts of the city are not conducive to their needs.
They called on the City Fathers to be sensitive to their plight, listen to their grievances and come up with solutions.
Most of the disabled vendors said they went into informal trading because they were no longer accessing their $20-per-household social welfare fund, or any assistance from government.
Speaking to NewZimbabwe.com, disabled vendors said their current working environment was bad as they crawl while some said they walked on bare feet into filthy public toilets.
"We are even struggling to register with the city council, and it will become more difficult for us if we are pushed out of the CBD to where there are no facilities to cater for people like us," said Mai Tinashe Chawatama.
"They should leave us at places such as bus terminuses and street corners as some of us have been here for the last six years," said one Tawanda.
Farai Mukuta, regional technical advisor at HIV and AIDS Trust, said disabled people should be registered separately as they were not given prior education on the registration formalities.
"We are calling on the city fathers to set aside a day for separate registration for people with disabilities because the able-bodied can run, hear, see and side line us, further disadvantaging people living with disabilities."
"That's why we say the CBD should be allocated to people living with disabilities," he added.
However, Harare City Council communications officer Dorothy Mavolwane said disabled vendors were being registered together with all the others but the municipality was ensuring that they were allocated space in the CBD.
"Although we are still compiling their numbers, as a city we are of the view that they will be allocated vending space because they are also trying to eke out an honest living," she said.
"All disabled vendors who responded to the call to register were assisted and they do not need to wait in the long queues but are registered immediately."
The National Association of Societies for the Care of the Handicapped (Nascoh) says 870 of their members are operating as street vendors in Harare.
Malawi Disability Body Trains Media Personnel in NtchisiAllAfrica.com-
As one way of promoting the rights of people with disabilities through awareness, Malawi Council for The Handicapped (MACOHA) in Ntchisi on Friday organized a one- day media personnel training workshop so that they should be well conversant with issues of human rights of people with disabilities, Macoha programmes and activities, the Community Based Rehabilitation (CBR) concept, national and legal frameworks among others.
Assistant Rehabilitation Officer for Macoha Ntchisi CBR project, Davie Banda said the training was aimed at encouraging the media personnel to be writing and reporting on issues that affect people with disabilities in their daily lives.
"As Macoha, we believe the media has alot of power to turn an issue into public debate. For example, the recent attacks and abductions of albinos in Malawi have sparked debates both nationally and internationally.
"On the other hand, the media as a change agent has the aura to influence people's attitudes by promoting rights of people with disabilities through media research and reporting which will help to provide support to people with disabilities and their families to access justice where they face discrimination and exclusion hence live their lives with self-worth, determination and dignity," said Banda.
He said the training targeted the media representatives in Ntchisi because as a vehicle and message carriers, they want them to help disseminating information about issues surrounding disability and human rights of people with disabilities.
Banda said the media has the potential of reaching out to greater population hence issues of human rights of people with disabilities will be known to alot of people and in the process help change their attitude towards people with disabilities. However, Banda has blamed the incidence of hiding children with disabilities which has been rampant in the district, saying the tendency is retrogressive in as far as human rights is concerned and this is a pure breach of human rights.
"Macoha is leaving no stone un-turned and through our community based rehabilitation workers, we are providing counselling sessions to parents who are keeping children with disabilities to desist from hiding their disabled children and encourage them to send their children to school.
"We are also conducting awareness raising campaigns to various communities to change their attitudes towards children with disabilities and their parents because negative attitudes by the community also contribute to this tendency," explained Banda.
Ethiopia: Accessing People With Disability to Health ServicesAllAfrica.com-
People with disability have to have access to every social activities including sports
People with a range of disabilities account for 17.6 per cent of the total population in Ethiopia. This is a significant number, indeed. When lack of access to people with disabilities increases, their venerability to epidemic diseases increases. So, it is easy to deduce that the more they are reached, the better health coverage would be attained. Even it is quite difficult to hit the Millennium Development Goals for people with disabilities have not been well included. Luckily enough, the already attained GTP period has mentioned the health, education and social protection section.
Exuberance to provide inclusive health service
"We are one in realizing the Grand Renaissance Dam. We stand for our country," said people with disability to convey their messages shortly indicating as they have to participate in the project. Recently, there was a meeting regarding the health service that has been rendered to people with disabilities.
The meeting was jointly organized by Ministry of Health with Centre for Disabilities and Development. Especially, mentally retarded citizens has transmitted their message to the audience in cultural and modern music followed by dance performances. They showed that they can contribute more if they get relevant health service, support and care.
Those who were showing educational music seem old people but young. They have become old because they could not get health access in their life. Because of this, they are unable to educate and work like other citizens are. They could not move from place to place without the support of others. They cannot wear, protect their hygiene and all their movement is dependent on others. In general, helping them requires more effort and attention.
When they are facing health problems, nobody knows what part of their body has faced a problem. It is only their families who can understand their problems. They are exposed to external influences. Those who have strong families can go to school and help themselves with lots of efforts. But, they still need support and follow up. But if we ask ourselves that how many of them are getting these chances? The answer may be obscure.
Though it is impossible to put in numerical data, it is believed that most of them are locked within the house. Those who transmitted message these days are disables who have been getting strong family support. Because there is no attitude that disable persons can learn, support their families, the society has not yet given special attention to them.
The problem of autistic children is not especial for other disabilities. For those who misunderstood them, they seem people who have ethical problem. Because the disability they have faced is not visible, they cannot get people for help. They also cannot communicate and tell anybody about their problems. That is why they need the support of others.
It is difficult to speak to doctors about the disease they have got. Unless their families get their voice heard loud. Because doctors cannot able to understand their feelings well, said participants of the discussion. Surprisingly, some health professionals are engaged in disagreements and conflicts because they do not understand them well, they remembered. According to participants who joined the meeting representing various disability associations, so far the health service provision is not taking all type of disabilities into consideration. They explained the matter exemplifying the problem they had encountered during their stay in hospital.
As learnt from Yetnebersh Negusse, the community should start realizing that the issue of disabilities is as human right issue and that they deserve access to all the basic public services including health, education, sport and others. So, the community should be in a position to help these segments of the society and in a way effectively supporting people with disabilities. If this is so, they could not be only beneficiaries but also contributors to the development of the nation. The meeting aimed at increasing the collaboration and networking between the disability and health sector. The Ministry of Health has always been endeavouring to include persons with disabilities in its programmes and strategies.
So, there is a national advisory committee established by the Ministry of Health which includes directors of different directorate as well as the representatives of the disabled persons organizations. In addition, associations of persons with disabilities will also have the chance to introduce their members as well as their works for different participants from health sector, public health institute, hospital representatives. The Medicine Fund and supply agencies as well as Food and Drug Control Agency are working along this line. All of the them get stakes in the issue of disability. Hence, it has become a kind of public agenda. The approach that the government follows is preventive. But the rehabilitation aspect will be covered.
So far, Persons with Disabilities have no access to health services due to communication barriers, inefficient managerial system, lack of resource and other physical accessibility barriers. Recently, there was also a consultative workshop in relation to health accessibility. The conference is jointly organized by Ministry of Health and Centre for Disability and Development at Sarem Hotel.
Taking that opportunity, Yetnebersh Negusse, Executive Directer for Ethiopian Centre for Disability and Development said that though there are efforts here and there, more is needed in terms of addressing their needs of disabilities to accessibility to and participation in various aspects.
So far, we have conducted a survey research in Oromia, Amhara, Souther Nations, Nationalities and Peoples states and Addis Ababa city to evaluate health accessibility of persons with disabilities. In terms of physical accessibility, mainly, the standards that the Ministry of Health has introduced really outdated and they do not include the specific needs of persons with disabilities. Some of them are in a very difficult position to reach to health facilities. The rest even though they are close to the main ways to the highways, they have not got out doors, slippery floors. Instead they encounter high windows to which their wheelchairs could hardly climb. Services are not clearly written in a way which can help deaf people to read and move around such as in laboratory, pharmacy, examination room and so on.
This kind of concepts are developmental by themselves. The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Article 25 specifically talks about the right to health of persons with disabilities. Ethiopia has ratified and it has submitted a report on the convention. So, the Ministry of Health is working to update its procedures and policies in place in line with the article 25 of the convention. Thus, we can see that the good will is there.
But in terms of real accessibility and practicality, a lot remains to be done. This long journey cannot be completed by the sole effort of a certain institution. That is why, it is always heralded that all stakeholders have to join forces to create a conducive and collaborative environment and frameworks for supporting people with disabilities. "Disability is a reality for those of us who are already disabled and a possibility for everyone," they say.
Mengistu Wolde, Ministry Policy Planning Directorate Reform Programmes Core Process Head on his part said that the Ministry has been always endeavouring to include persons with disability in its programmes and strategies. Currently, the Ministry has been revising its polices. Hence, it has been including the issue of persons with disabilities in its strategies and policies. It has planned to identify people with disabilities using health extension programmes and to make them beneficial from health accessibility. Stakeholders who are working in the area should exert efforts concerning disability issues and closely work with the Ministry to break the door locked to people with disabilities.
As stated earlier, there is a national advisory committee established by the Ministry of Health. This committee is intending to increase the level of accessibility as well as the affordability of services to persons with disabilities in terms of health. It will focus on the situation of persons with disabilities in Ethiopia specifically with regards to health, Mengistu added.
Disabled denied sexual rights
A physically disabled man enters a supermarket and asks the woman at the counter for a pack of condoms. The teller is shocked and turns to her co-workers to ask them if she should sell the man condoms.
ByBABOKI KAYAWE Mon 13 Jul 2015, 15:48 pm (GMT +2) Comments Email Share
: Disabled denied sexual rights Expand this Image
The disabled man cannot stomach the ‘mini conference’ being held to determine whether he should be sold condoms or not. Embarrassed, he walks away without his much needed commodity.
What could have transpired after he fails to get the protection he needed could only be left to imagination.
This touching anecdote narrated by an officer within the Office of the President (OP) disability unit, left throngs of people who attended the Botswana Society for Human Development (BSHD) special education workshop disheartened.
The workshop was held at the University of Botswana on Saturday. It is just one of the numerous and untold battles that people with disability faces as they go about life.
Coordinator of the disability division, Thomas Motingwa said it is unfortunate that some members of our society still treat People Living With Disabilities (PLWDs), as second-class citizens. He said the prevalence perception is that they do not engage in romantic relationships, which is in fact untrue. “This makes the relationship between disability, HIV/AIDS and poverty a very extreme one and difficult to tackle,” he said.
Motingwa further said the situation is exacerbated by lack of inclusive informational and educational material targeted at the multifaceted disabilities. He described disability as a double burden for women due to the fact that women without disability are having it hard already. Motingwa said it was important to have intensified efforts to empower women living with disabilities given the double stigma that they are faced with. “Women with disabilities still experience double stigma and the time is now for them to be empowered so that they enjoy their right,” he said.
Motingwa stressed that for women the situation was peculiar. “If those considered normal women can put on their stilettos and convene a high level rights meet in Beijing, what about that woman with hearing impairment in a far off corner of this country?” he asked. Motingwa however commended government for showing commitment to strive to address challenges facing people living with disability. He urged for accelerated education on the different forms of disability. “Imagine how much stronger the world would be if we were aware of the different disabilities,” he said. The rights of persons with disabilities in Botswana and around the world would be respect, protected and fulfilled, he added. Motingwa said people with disabilities would have plenty opportunities they deserve to generate ideas and inspire others.
“We have an obligation to work harder to demystify disabilities and weed out negative attitudes so that we can have a nation where PLWDs have equal opportunities like the rest of the citizens,” he said.
The objective of the workshop was to promote objective disability awareness in Botswana and practical solutions to pertinent challenges that PLWDs face.
The NGO publicity secretary said the forum was a result of the worrisome status quo of disability awareness among Botswana citizens and concerned around invisible disabilities, as well as to promote a culture where targeted interventions are designed for peculiar disabilities. The event covered a wide range of topics such as learning disabilities, HIV/ AIDS and disabilities, as well as disability etiquette.
- See more at: http://www.mmegi.bw/index.php?aid=52568&dir=2015/july/13#sthash.KCd1MEnj.dpuf3
LITTLE GUIDANCE ON ACCESS TO JUSTICE FOR DISABLED WORRIES STATE
Times of Zambia-
Published On July 15, 2015 ≫ 160 Views≫ By Hildah Lumba ≫ Latest News, Stories
By ADRIAN MWANZA -
HOME Affairs Minister Davies Mwila says the Government is concerned with the low guidance available for people living with psychosocial disabilities to allow them access to justice.
Mr Mwila said there was little guidance available on ensuring equal access to justice, especially for people with psychosocial or intellectual disabilities.
He said in a speech read for him by Community Development, Mother and Child Health Minister Emerine Kabanshi in Lusaka yesterday during the launch of a report on people with psychosocial and intellectual disabilities in criminal justice system.
“Government will ensure it moves towards a new constitutional dispensation that enshrines the right to dignity, freedom and equality before the law for all its citizens,” he said.
The ministry has in the past two years been examining the legislation, policies and practice as well as collecting data from the public on their view in the matter.
Mr Mwila called for partnership with stakeholders to help resolve challenges faced by people with psychosocial and intellectual disabilities caught up in the justice system.
In 2010, the Government ratified the United Nations Convention on Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) and has since been working in partnership with civil society groups like the Mental Health Users Network of Zambia.
“We have recognised these difficulties, criminal justice health care and disability rights communities have rarely worked together to understand the problems and look for solutions,” he said.
Open Society Foundations programme manager Louise Ehlers said at the same function that people with psychosocial and intellectual disabilities faced harsh treatment in the justice system because they failed to acclimatise to prison conditions.
Some of the challenges that people with psychosocial and intellectual disabilities face include over-detention as well as being detained wrongly because they were unable to express themselves effectively.
“The justice system does not favour people with psychosocial and intellectual disabilities and in most cases they find it hard to cope with prison conditions,” she said.
Gambia: 'People With Disability Are Capable of Contributing to Development'AllAfrica.com-
Having disability does not mean being a nuisance in society or retardation to development, as people with disability are capable of contributing to national development, the national coordinator of the Network against Gender-Based Violence (NGBV) has said.
Haddy Mboge said all that the people with disability need is recognition and support to be able to fulfill their dreams.
She made this statement on Friday during a daylong sensitisation of women with disabilities on violence against women organised by NGBV and bankrolled by Action Aid International The Gambia.
The awareness creation forum, held at GOVI Resource Centre in Kanifing, brought together disabled women from all over The Gambia.
It was meant to create awareness among the participants about their rights and show them the necessary steps and procedures to follow when their rights are violated.
The national coordinator of the NGBV said looking at gender-based violence, consideration should be made on those who are more vulnerable and statistics has proven that women and girls are more at risk.
A further breakdown of that statistics revealed that women and girls with disabilities are more vulnerable.
Mrs Mboge said the way society perceives disability is what makes people with disability more vulnerable.
Ebrima Dibasey, director of the Gambia Federation of the Disabled, said the situation of people with disability is delicate because some issues affecting them are always set aside.
This is particularly true of women with disabilities who confront serious human right violation, especially sexual violence.
"This is because they are weak as women coupled with their disability," Mr Dibasey said, adding that the training will go a long way in helping them to know their rights and be able to claim it.
Speaking on behalf of the director of Action Aid, Fanta Jatta-Sowe said just being born as a woman posts some form of threats, this coupled with being disabled poses even greater challenge.
The women rights specialist said gender-based violence has no border but women with disabilities and less economic strength face a bigger burden of such violence.
Association Of Deaf Protests Over Marginalisation
By Patrick Ochoga
Jul 15, 2015 5:05 am | 0 Comments
Members of Edo State Association of the Deaf yesterday staged a peaceful protest over alleged marginalisation, and abandonment by the state government.
The body made up of an estimated 85, 000 deaf people said, “Of all clusters of people living with disability, the deaf are the most neglected possibly, because deafness being a hidden disability is shrouded in mystery”.
They lamented inadequate number of special education teachers, lack of employment to meet with the needs of their families and to cater for their children. They also expressed the need to provide hostels for deaf students, while lamenting the absence of learning and reading materials in their schools. They called for the re-introduction of free West African Examination Council (WAEC) and National Examination Council (NECO) enrollment for the deaf and physically challenged students, among several other demands.
Led by the state chairman and South-South coordinator of the group, Ekhorrutomwen Iyobosa, the members who also spoke through an interpreter, Mrs. Godwin-Aiya Cynthia, appealed for employment for their members in the state civil service in order to make life bearable for them.
The peaceful protest took them to the state council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) and the Government House, Benin where they lodged their complaints.
In a protest letter to Governor Adams Oshiomhole, they said “The association has been able to train 50 of its members in vocational trainings but lacked the finance to establish them in business.
Sack Kobby Acheampong - Disabled Federation begs MahamaStarr 103.5 FM
The Disabled Federation of Ghana is appealing to President John Mahama to dismiss the head of the Youth Employment Agency (YEA), Kobby Acheampong.
The Federation is accusing Mr. Acheampong of assaulting the visually impaired Head of the Disability Desk at the youth employment agency.
The former deputy Interior minister stands accused of slapping Jacob Adongo when he inadvertently stepped on his foot some months ago.
President of the Federation, Yaw Ofori Debrah told Starr News they will continue to push until Mr Acheampong is relieved of his post by the President.
Kano governor increases monthly allowance of handicapped children’s caregivers
July 20, 2015Press Release
June 20, 2015
Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, has increased the monthly allowance of operational staff of the Torrey Home for Handicapped Children in Kano metropolis, from N5, 000 to N10, 000 monthly.
The increase, he said, is not to compensate them but to show appreciation for their diligence in taking care of the children who are mostly mentally challenged. He said that only God can reward them.
Mr. Ganduje made the assertion during an inspection of the home on Saturday.
He noted that despite limited resources, the home, which is being managed by the state Ministry of Women Affairs is kept tidy by the officers the officers managing it.
“Government is very much concerned about the condition of these children and we would do our best within limits of the available resources to improve their living condition, ” he said.
The governor urged the well to do in the society to assist the home and engage in other humanitarian gestures that would make life more meaningful for the less privileged.
In her remarks, the Officer in charge of the home, Aishatu Kurawa, who conducted the governor round, explained that at present, there are about 27 inmates in the home.
She, however, requested the state government to assist in overcoming some of their logistical challenges to make the operational conditions better.
The governor was accompanied during the visit by his deputy, Hafiz Abubakar, commissioners and other top government functionaries.
Uber's New Feature Enables Deaf Kenyans Becomes DriversCelebrating Progress Africa
Following a partnership between Uber, the ride-hailing service and the Kenya National Association of the Deaf (KNAD), new features will be introduced on the Uber app, designed to make it easier for deaf and hard-of-hearing Kenyans to become partner-drivers and earn an income.
The partnership with the association has helped Uber understand the challenges deaf and hard-of-hearing people overcome every day.
"As a result we're introducing new features on the Uber app which are designed to make it easier for deaf and hard-of-hearing Kenyans to become partner-drivers and earn an income. The new settings we're announcing today are a first step but we're already thinking about how else we can help, through education and awareness, remove the barrier between deaf and hearing people in our cities," says Jambu Palaniappan, Regional General Manager for Eastern Europe, Middle East & Africa.
According to Nickson O. Kakiri, National Chairman of the Kenya National Association of the Deaf, "Part of our mission is to promote public and private sector policies and initiatives that meet the rights and needs of the deaf community. This partnership, which will make it easier for deaf and hard of hearing people to work, is a welcome development."
Uberannounced in May some new features it was testing for deaf or hard-of-hearing driver partners in Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. The features of the update included - a new trip request with a flashing light, ability for riders to text a deaf or hard-of-hearing driver if they need to provide special instructions for pickup, extra prompt that allows riders to enter their destination and notifies them if their driver is deaf or hard-of-hearing.
Traders from disabled groups seek financial, material supportDaily News
Details Published on Tuesday, 04 August 2015 00:45 Written by PIUS RUGONZIBWA in Mwanza Hits: 120
TRADERS from groups of people with disabilities in the Lake Zone have appealed for more material and financial support for them to sustain their small-scale businesses.
Speaking to the 'Daily News' over the weekend, the entrepreneurs said although they had attended various seminars on entrepreneurship skills they found it hard to sustain their projects due to lack of reliable capital.
About 24 members of people with disabilities attended a week-long entrepreneurship programme which was conducted by the Small Industries Development Organisation (SIDO) through the Empower People with Disabilities (EPWDs) project.
The project, which took off in 2014, had managed to provide training to about 104 members from Geita, Shinyanga, Simiyu, Mwanza and Mara regions so far.
It targets to reach over 280 beneficiaries by the end of this year when it comes to an end. "I started my small cafe project in 2013 with a capital of 100,000/-, which is doing slightly well, but I could do with at least 500,000/- to expand it," said Ms Ester Peter.
SIDO has embarked on supporting people with disabilities who show the ability to sustain their lives economically if empowered with skills and resources.
According to EPWD project coordinator, Ms Jane Madete, chances are higher for the groups to benefit from the entrepreneurship training if they work hard and utilise the available resources to the maximum.
She said her project would ensure the target groups were well trained and equipped with necessary skills, particularly in food processing, while they were equally assisted to market their products.
However, Ms Madete said since most of the entrepreneurs were operating in rural areas it was possible to run their businesses starting with small capital as they slowly grew.
"We have now embarked on visiting their projects and providing close guidance as well as assisting them with marketing and packaging technologies and skills, hoping they will be able to move on independently," she said.
EPWD was set to start talks with the project sponsor, Disability Aid Abroad (DAA) from Northern Ireland, on the possibility of funding the next phase, it commences next year.
2015年アフリカひろば特別企画 障がい者支援の「現場」：ケニア・障がいを持つ子どもの支援団体「シロアムの園」代表・公文和子さんを お迎えして-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-**-*-*-**-*-*-**-*-*-**-*-*-**-*-*-**-*-*-**-*-*-**-*-*-**-
Nigeria: Teacher Urges Government to Subsidise Education for Visually Impaired StudentsAllAfrica.com-
Mr Winful Clement, a visually impaired teacher, has appealed to the government to subsidise education for visually impaired students in the country.
Clement, an Information Communication Technology teacher, made the appeal on Sunday in Lagos in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
Clement, who teaches at Parcelly School for the Blind and Partially Sighted Children, Lagos, said it was very expensive to train a visually impaired student in Nigerian schools.
He said that on the average, a visually impaired student needs equipment like writing frame, typewriter, Braille machine, laptop and an application called Job Acceleration with Speed (JAWS) to learn.
"To train a visually impaired person like myself is very expensive than the able-bodied person.
"The least material we use to educate the visually impaired students is about N5,000.
"On the average, a student needs more than N500, 000 to purchase the equipment he or she will use in school and also other resources which cannot be quantify.
Consider disabled for elective posts - CallDaily News-
Consider disabled for elective posts - Call
Details Published on Tuesday, 11 August 2015 00:44 Written by ALEXANDER SANGA in Mwanza Hits: 196
CHAIRMAN of the Association of People with Disability (SHIVYAWATA), Mr Alfred Kapole, has urged the government and political parties to give equal opportunity to people with disability to vie for various positions during the coming general election.
Speaking during a seminar organised for the association's members ahead of the general elections, the chairman said people with disability were capable of holding different political positions at all the levels.
He said experience had shown that some of their members who were given such chance did exemplarily well to the point of some becoming cabinet members.
“It is high time we showed that we can make good leaders just like other people without disability; so, we ask for the electoral body and other government machineries to give us the chance,” he said.
Mr Kapole also appealed to the people to vote for people with disability who will contest in the general elections, alongside providing them with civic education.
For his part, a project officer with Inclusive Election Project, Mr Isack Idama, said the project officials were determined to meet with Zanzibar Electoral Commission(ZEC) and National Electoral Commission(NEC) officials on the possibility of using tactile ballot papers for their members with blindness.
He said people who were deaf and blind had been frustrated by electoral procedures in the past which allowed them to use guides in voting, adding that this denied them the right to elect candidates of their choice.
Apart from the availability of special papers, he also called for a special the arrangement so that sign language translators could be readily available during the entire electoral process to keep them updated on the elections' outcome.
He said Inclusive Elections Project which kicked off early last year will operate in 13 regions by providing civic education to people with disability.
The project is under the sponsorship of UN Women, Women Fund Tanzania (WFT), Tanzania Jamii Shirikishi, Tanzania Centre for Democracy, Tanzania Media Women's Association and the Legal and Human Rights Centre.
In Mwanza Region the project has already provided seminars to various associations of people with disability in Ilemela, Nyamagana, Magu, Ukerewe, Kwimba and Misungwi districts.
Rwanda: Disabled Ex-Combatants Defy the Odds, Reap Big From Greenhouse Farming
By Dennis Agaba
They cracked jokes as they made leisurely rides in their compound using wheelchairs. And when I turned up at their home, the reception was warm and welcoming.
This was my first encounter with Gayitan Kayitare and Adolph Sacyindi, disabled liberation ex-soldiers under Impuhwe Co-operative of disabled ex-combatants formed to fight poverty among members through agriculture.
Under the leadership of Kayitare and Sacyindi, the co-operative was recently recognised by Kicukiro District for its work in empowering members and farmers generallyUnder the leadership of Kayitare and Sacyindi, the co-operative was recently recognised by Kicukiro District as top model farmers.
The duo was in high spirits as I conducted the interview and they took me around their gardens.
"Our disability has limited our mobility to some extent... However, we have refused to let our fragile legs limit our innovation and dreams," says Kayitare, 51, who is the vice-president of Impuhwe Co-operative, which operates in Nyarugunga sector.
The co-operative is made up of 52 ex-combatants, including two women.
The group says they are determined to uplift their standards of living, inspired by their heroic deeds during the liberation struggle.
"Our dreams have kept us strong, with a positive attitude towards life and progress, and our ideas have laid an unshakeable foundation for the future," he says.
The disabled ex-combatants grow vegetables such as cabbages, tomatoes, onions, green paper, among others, under greenhouses. Their success in adopting modern farming methods could explains why they were recognised by Kicukiro District.
"Initially, we were practicing agriculture using traditional methods.
"We also didn't use any modern farming practices, our farming projects were always exposed to vagaries of weather and diseases, affecting output and quality," says Kayitare.
He adds that the unfavourable weather conditions, not only destroyed their investments, but almost forced them to abandon agriculture altogether.
Sacyindi, 52, who is the co-operative group secretary, notes that they often suffered losses during heavy rains and dry spells.
"The high cost of production was another challenge we encountered in the initial stages of the project, which greatly affected our earnings, making it hard for the co-operative to operate sustainably," he explains.
When all seemed lost and the ex-soldiers were about to throw in the towel, World Vision, came to their rescue.
The NGO donated three greenhouses to the group, and trained them in modern farming methods under its economic empowerment strategy. This marked the turning point for the co-operative as it started on the road that has seen it become a symbol of success.
"With the greenhouses, we started a new phase for the project, making it more productive and profitable, which has improved our well-being," Kayitare says.
"We are now able to produce vegetables all year round, which has increased returns. We have also been able to reduce the cost of production since greenhouses require a small piece of land," Kayitare explains.
Frank Muhwezi, the Word Vision central zone manager, says the firm seeks to empower communities so that they improve the standards of living and those of their families.
"World Vision donated greenhouses to the ex-combatants and trained them in modern farming methods to ensure they get a sustainable source of income to become self-reliant," he adds.
"We are glad our efforts were not in vain as the ex-soldiers are now able to cater for their families' needs and contribute to the development of the country," Muhwezi points out.
The co-operative has secured market for their produce in different Kigali supermarkets, including Floreb, Simba and Nakumatt.
Sacyindi says they produce 120 kilogrammes of tomatoes every week worth Rwf72,000 weekly or Rwf288,000 monthly. A kilogramme of tomatoes is sold at Rwf500.
Kayitare says the co-operative has diversified and invested in dairy farming. The group so far has 26 dairy cows. Kayitare points out that they get Rwf286,000 from milk sales per month, which has improved their returns.
The co-operative also owns a canteen and 25 rabbits, from which they earn Rwf100,000 monthly.
Kayitare says the projects have laid a firm foundation for the group, adding that they would start new projects in the near future.
Kayitare attributes the co-operative's success to intervention of Word Vision, a development-oriented NGO, that he says opened new opportunities for them.
"World Vision has done a lot, not only in agriculture,but also in empowering us in different ways so that our standards of living are uplifted; we have received several trainings on how to develop our lives both financially and socially.
"More so, to enable us follow up our activities, they provided us with modern wheelchairs to facilitate our movements. That has been a huge support that we will forever appreciate," he says.
Benefits to the members
Kayitare points out that they plough back some of profits into the project, and invest some in new enterprises to increase returns.
"Some of the money we get is used to buy fertilisers, containers and other modern equipment; the balance is shared among members," he says.
Sacyindi says their families' health has improved and malnutrition is a thing of the past, thanks to vegetables and the milk the group produces.
As a way of giving back to the community, the co-operative established a canteen, where people around the community access fresh greens and milk.
To ensure accountability, all the group's income-generating activities have separate bank accounts "so that we measure the productivity of each activity and the growth of every investment".
Sacyindi says joining the co-operative has enabled him and other ex-combatants to enhance earnings and their family's standards of living. He notes that members' savings have grown since they contribute to the co-operative savings basket every month.
He adds that the co-operative members can now pay school fees for their children and medical insurance with ease.
"Our children are proud that their parents have something to do even though they're disabled. They feel we're still important and capable of great things despite our disability... That is what brings us joy and keeps us going," says Sacyindi.
Kayitare says the other source of happiness is that they are able to contribute national development.
"We are happy that we're also contributing to the development of the country, despite our disabilities," he states.
The co-operative employs three permanent workers, but hires more people on temporary basis during harvest season. "This way, we also create jobs for young Rwandans," Sacyindi says.
Kayitare says they plan to intensify modern farming to increase production and returns.
"We are going to buy more modern equipment and greenhouses to be able to grow more crops to satisfy the market throughout the year.
With increased production, we also hope to find better market for our produce," he says.
"This will enable the co-operative to invest in other economic ventures to widen income streams and, hence further improve members' earnings."
Kayitare advises fellow Rwandans, especially those who are living with disability, never to let go of their dreams.
"Let those dreams be the legs you lost to liberate motherland; let them take you wherever you want to go," he counsels.
"Working with other people of common interests and aspirations is a huge stepping stone toward self-reliance and economic independence, thus the importance of joining co-operatives cannot be underestimated," he says.
Co-operatives allow members to be economically independent, and they are also good vehicles to reduce poverty among the population, let's embrace them.
"Remember, never limit your destiny to the level of your mobility; you can still work and improve your living standards whatever your condition."
Malawi govt offers scholarship to persons with disability: TEVETA to give vocational trainingNyasa Times
Malawi Government has established a free scholarship for the persons with disability to train them in various vocational skills.
Kaliati : Affirmative action
People with disability holding the Malawi School Certificate of Education (MSCE) are qualified candidates and must apply not later than 20th August 2015.
Minister Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare, Patricia Kaliati said in Lilongwe that her ministry will offer the training in conjunction with Technical Entrepreneurial and Vocation Education and Training Authority (TEVETA).
Kalitati said the scholarship is free and asked everyone to inform and encourage those that are qualified to apply and submit their application directly to the Ministry of Gender offices or to TEVETA.
“My Ministry and Technical Entrepreneur and Vocational Education Training Authority (TEVETA) has come up with an affirmative action to promote access to vocation skills training for persons with disability using existing public technical colleges.
“I am pleased to report that TEVETA has reservation of 20 places for persons with disabilities in its scholarship programme in all the public technical colleges,” said Kaliati
“For the offer to be effectively utilized persons with required qualifications needs to be informed” said Kaliati while indicating that applications be submitted to her ministry offices or to TEVETA.
The available opportunities includes; Administrative Studies, Automobile Mechanics, Brick Layering, Food Production, Carpentry and Joinery, Electrical Installation, IT, Tailoring and Designing.
Kaliati said this initiative is Government vision of creating equal opportunities for persons with disabilities and further responds to UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disability.
She noted with concern that person with disabilities continue to fail to access to training opportunities in some vocation training centres due to financial challenges, negative attitude by the society and lack of knowledge among persons with disability on available training opportunities.
“Some schools would not accept person with disability because they think that such persons will slow down the learning process of other participants,” said Kaliati
Then she underlined that such initiatives and mainstreaming disability services into all programmes enable people with disability to take their place as citizens on equal basis with others and make their contributions to society.
She further guarantees Malawi Government commitment to continue implementing various initiatives that promote rights of people with disabilities and that her ministry with TEVETA will keep on introducing number of informal training programmes for those that do not have school qualifications.
Kaliati also appealed to people with disabilities who do not have qualifications to utilize and take advantage of Community Technical Colleges that are being established in their districts.
Kenya's Deaf Cabbies Use Uber App to Compete
Voice of America
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August 12, 2015 1:34 PM
The taxi-like online company Uber has begun a first-of-its-kind African pilot project where deaf drivers in Nairobi use its app.
Driver Benard Mulama intently goes through his phone. For the past week he’s been getting familiar with the Uber App.
Mulama, who is deaf, is in a pilot project encouraging the hearing impaired to use the smartphone app that connects riders to drivers.
It's a collaboration between Uber and the Kenya National Association of the Deaf (KNAD).
Connecting drivers, riders
In the field, the Uber app works seamlessly with a flash prompt appearing on the smartphone alerting the driver of a potential client.
For Mulama, the application means that more deaf drivers will overcome hurdles and venture into a business that was once the preserve of only the hearing.
“Well, many deaf drivers driving taxis normally have problems in getting a personal service vehicle [PSV] license," he said. "But getting a private car license is easy since the police normally give licenses to private car owners who are deaf.”
The chairman of KNAD said the Uber app helps to level the playing field somewhat.
“We partnered with Uber because many deaf drivers do not have the opportunity to drive due to the attitude of policemen. Through the Uber app we will be able to influence and enable deaf people to drive,” said KNAD Chairman Nickson Kakiri.
Ease of use
The Uber app is relatively easy to use. The rider keys in their pickup location and the driver accepts the request once the phone flashes. Once the rider is picked up the Uber App automatically charges the fare ?75 cents per kilometer.
Uber's manager in Kenya says the new revenue stream is a motivational factor.
“We both see the power of technology to offer greater income opportunities to deaf and hard of hearing people who typically don’t have access to that many income opportunities, especially in cities like Nairobi," said Alastair Curtis, Uber general manager.
According to the Kenya Sign Language Interpreters Association, there are more than 600,000 hearing-impaired people in Kenya.
We can’t communicate in darkness - Volta sch for the deafStarr 103.5 FM
Students of the Volta School for the Deaf in Hohoe are appealing to the general public to support them with a generator set because communication between them stalls whenever the power goes off.
According to the students, the erratic power supply keeps worsening and it is having a heavy toll on them due to their hearing and speech impairment.
The students who, communicate through sign language, are left stranded in the evenings during power outages, as they are unable to see and interpret their own gestures in darkness.
They are therefore left with no option than to retire to early bed, since the school does not have a standby generator to remedy the situation.
Speaking to Starr News’ Volta regional correspondent Lambert Atsivor, the headmistress of the school Diddy Ntim, said the situation is a major “headache” to management.
“We use our eyes to see what we sign, so when the lights are off, everything goes mute, because we cannot communicate in darkness. So we need a standby generator to use in times of lightoff. We’ll be grateful if people will support us,” Ntim appealed.
Visually impaired jailed for defilement
Thursday, 13 August 2015 16:10
Published in General News
A 26-year old unemployed was on Thursday sentenced to seven years imprisonment by an Accra Circuit for defiling a Class Three pupil at Madina.
Daniel Darkwa, who is blind, was charged with defilement.
He pleaded guilty and the court presided over by Ms Patricia Quansah convicted him on his own.
The convict is said to have told the court that it was the victim who suggested the act and forced herself on him.
Prosecuting, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Sarah Acquah told the court that the complainant was a social worker of Orphan Aid Africa, a non-governmental organisation at Dodowa, in the Greater Accra Region.
The Prosecution said Darkwah resided in a foster home in Madina. On July 1, this year, at about 1730 hours, there was black out in the home and all the inmates of the home went out leaving the victim and her twin sister in a living room.
DSP Acquah said Darkwah who was then in a nearby house, went into the living room and sent the twin sister to go and buy him a locally made drink known as Sobolo.
The Prosecution said the convict escorted the victim’s sister out of the compound and returned to where the victim was sleeping.
According to prosecution, Darkwah retuned and found the victim lying in a supine position and he took advantage of that and defiled her.
The Prosecution said when the victim attempted to shout for help, Darkwah closed her mouth with his hand.
When the victim’s sister returned from her errand and knocked the door, Darkwah opened the door and left.
The victim informed her sister about her ordeal. Later the victim and her sister informed the mother of the Home who also reported the incident to the Police.
disabled children poorer countries out of primary education south africa human rights watch report
Many disabled children in poorer countries left out of primary education
Human Rights Watch report on the 500,000 children with disabilities not in education in South Africa reflects worldwide trend in developing countries
A disabled South African boy walks home from school in Soweto. South Africa has been lauded in the past for its commitment to improve access to education for disabled children. Photograph: Sizwe Ndingane/Getty Images
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Tuesday 18 August 2015 12.24 BST Last modified on Tuesday 18 August 2015 12.27 BST
An estimated 500,000 children with disabilities are not enrolled in South Africa’s educational system, according to a report by Human Rights Watch (HRW) published on Tuesday.
The findings reflect a global trend. Children with disabilities continue to be left out of school even as some countries assert that they have met the millennium development goal (MDG) to grant every child access to primary education.
“Although the government claims it has achieved the MDG of enrolling all children in primary schools by 2015, HRW found that in reality, across South Africa, many children with disabilities are not in school, ” the report says.
Uganda’s success in universal primary education falling apart
The second MDG, which targeted universal primary education by 2015, will not be met, largely because of poor progress in sub-Saharan Africa. Problems related to getting disabled children into the school system are also thought to be behind the failure.
“Many, if not most, of disabled children are not enrolled in schools in developing countries,” says Hannah Kuper, co-director of the International Centre for Evidence in Disability at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
South Africa, the continent’s second-biggest economy after Nigeria, with more resources to educate disabled children than many other countries, has been lauded in the past for its commitment to improve access to education for disabled children. In 2007, it was one of the first countries to ratify the UN’s disability rights convention and in 2001 it unveiled policies to end the exclusion of disabled children from schools (pdf).
Angie Motshekga, South Africa’s minister for basic education, said in May that the country had met the MDG. The UN has said: “South Africa has in effect achieved the goal of universal primary education before the year 2015, and its education system can now be recognised as having attained near universal access.”
But HRW questions this claim. It reports that the country’s schools practise widespread discrimination against children with disabilities in enrolment decisions. “The South African government needs to admit that it is not providing quality education to all of its children ? in fact, no schooling at all to many who have disabilities,” says Elin Martinez, HRW’s children’s rights researcher and author of the report.
Qinisela, a South African mother of an eight-year-old boy with Down’s syndrome who lives in Kwa-Ngwanase, KwaZulu-Natal, told HRW researchers: “We tried to put him in a [mainstream] school but they said they couldn’t put him in that school because he has disabilities … because of Down’s syndrome he isn’t like other children so they [said they] can’t teach him. At the therapy, they promised to phone if there’s a space in a special school. I’ve been waiting since last year.”
The HRW report is based on interviews with 70 parents like Qinisela about their experience getting their children and young adults educated. Researchers visited Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Northern Cape and Western Cape provinces in October and November last year. HRW says a lack of proper accommodation in school, discriminatory fees and expenses, violence, abuse and neglect in schools, lack of quality education and poor teacher training and awareness hindered access to education.
These concerns are echoed by Kuper, who says many schools in the developing world are not equipped to teach disabled children, and stigma against those with learning difficulties pervades many societies.
Poor data on the enrolment of disabled children is a problem for many countries, says Kuper. “The first thing that we need is more data in order to know how to enrol children with disabilities in school. We need to know which children are most excluded and why, in order to see how to overcome these barriers. And we need to know what works best to address the needs of disabled children when they are in school, so that they can have the best education possible.” Data collected in 2012 by Plan International, a children’s rights NGO, is one of the few datasets that shows the scale of the problem of getting disabled children into schools in the developing world. “There isn’t any better data that I know,” says Kuper.
The sustainable development goals (SDGs), which come into effect next year, have several provisions to improve the lives of people with disabilities, including targets to educate all disabled children and to find more jobs for disabled adults.
There are still some 59 million primary-age children and 65 million adolescents out of school
Jo Bourne, Unicef
“We need to ensure that the health, rehabilitation and education systems work together both at national levels ... and at district and school levels so that children with disabilities are supported to access their local mainstream schools,” says Julia McGeown, an inclusive education technical adviser at Handicap International.
Kuper urges a change in the attitude towards children with disabilities. “We also need to raise awareness that disabled children have the right to attend school, and that including them often involves only small changes in the school or teaching methods, or even just in attitudes,” she says.
Jo Bourne, chief of education at Unicef, the UN’s children’s agency, says, “Despite recent progress, there are still some 59 million primary-age children and 65 million adolescents out of school ? often children living in poverty, girls, children with disabilities, children from ethnic minorities, children living in conflict or those engaged in child labour. These children and young people are among the most disadvantaged citizens from across the developing world and are not only excluded from the opportunity of education and learning for their own individual development, they are missing out on the opportunity to contribute to their communities and economies when they reach adulthood.”
Witness: Sidelined in South Africa For Being Different
Human Rights Watch
Sisandua Hani’s fight to keep her son in school
Sisandua Hani c 2015 Diane McCarthy/Human Rights Watch
Senior Press Officer
Ntsikelelo is small for his age, and quite a handful. One moment, the 8-year old rolls around on the floor, the next instant he paces the room, impatiently and with big strides. The colorful picture books his mother has spread out on a low table hardly capture his attention. With a shrug he turns his back on them and walks off, shaking his head and waving his hand irritably -- a gesture that seems more befitting of a cantankerous old man than a wiry child.
Sisandua and son
EXPAND Sisanda Hani and her son at Afrika Tikkun’s offices in Johannesburg. c Birgit Schwarz/Human Rights Watch July 2015
His mother, a young woman with dreadlocks and a somewhat melancholic smile, watches attentively but lets him be. When offered a white sheet of paper, Ntsikelelo finally settles down, pen in hand and a sparkle in his big brown eyes. “I like writing my name,” he says and draws a row of uneven circles that float across the page like soap bubbles. “I like books,” he adds and points at the notebook in my hands. Under her dreadlock fringe Sisandua Hani’s face lights up with joy and pride.
She hasn’t always been proud of the boy, nor loved him. For years, the 29-year-old, who grew up in Orange Farm, an informal settlement just outside South Africa’s economic hub, Johannesburg, where unemployment and poverty are notoriously high, rejected her son. She berated herself for giving birth to a child who “was different from other children.” “He acted strangely,” she recalls, “tearing clothes, breaking things, threatening to burn the house down. ‘What is he doing?’ I asked myself time and again. ‘Why did God give me such a child?’”
Sisandua had fainted while giving birth and the newborn spent his first three months in an incubator, hooked up to a steady oxygen supply. When the baby boy finally came home, he started having fits. “His whole body would shake,” Sisandua remembers. “But he would not cry.”
Ntsikelelo was diagnosed with epilepsy ? a neurological condition characterized by seizures - and with Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder Syndrome (ADHD), which means that he is only able to concentrate for short periods of time. Both conditions are treatable. But instead of receiving extra attention to overcome his learning problems, he has ? like hundreds of thousands of South African children with disabilities ? been sidelined for being different and excluded from any kind of formal education for most of his young life. Today, he has no concept of shapes or colors, letters or numbers.
South Africa was one of the first countries to ratify the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and made a commitment to prioritize access to inclusive education for children with disabilities in its “Education White Paper 6.” However, 14 years later, this progressive policy that would guarantee children with disabilities the right to learn alongside their peers, has still not translated into equal opportunities or protection from discrimination for affected children, Human Rights Watch found in a new report, “South Africa: ‘Complicit in Exclusion’. Failures to Guarantee an Equal Right to Education for Children with Disabilities in South Africa.” This is especially true for children like Ntsikelelo, who come from a poor background and have a high need of support.
The government claims to have achieved the United Nations Millennium Goal of universal enrollment in primary education. But over half a million South African children with disabilities remain out of school because, Human Rights Watch research shows, schools often make arbitrary and unchecked decisions as to who can enroll, reliable data on how many children with disabilities remain out of school is lacking, and waiting lists are long.
Many parents do not know their own rights, or are too afraid of stigmatization or further rejection to even try to insist on their children’s rights. To make matters worse, funding for inclusive education is inadequate. Human Rights Watch analysis found that over 12 times as much money is spent on expanding special schools: the government is in fact implementing a different policy than the one it set out in 2001.
Sisandua almost ended up destroyed by the lack of support and the widespread stigma attached to having a child with a disability. When other children started to call her son “egg-head” and mothers warned their toddlers not to play with Ntsikelelo because he could “infect” them, Sisandua responded with rage. She raged against his father: “You gave me this child.” She raged against her son: “I wanted to kill him.
” And ultimately she raged against herself, drowning her despair in alcohol, partying to forget and loathing her body for having produced a child she could not love.
For a year and a half, Sisandua crashed on other people’s floors, abdicated all responsibility for her child and left her mother to cope with his temper, his fits, and his sleepless nights. When she finally came to terms with her fate and returned home, she found a happy 4-year-old boy who greeted her with a shy smile and the one word that melted her heart -- “Mama.” “I was the one who was useless,” she says. “He actually was a blessing to me.”
Ever since then, Sisandua has been fighting an often seemingly hopeless fight for a fundamental right: the right to education for her child. The day care Ntsikelelo attended at age 4 claimed not to have the necessary personnel to deal with his seizures. They advised Sisandua to keep him at home. The school she tried to enroll him in when he turned 6 gave him a number of tests, declared him unfit for mainstream schooling, and referred him to a training center for kids with special needs. The center put her name on a waiting list. And there it stayed.
AUGUST 18, 2015 Report
“Complicit in Exclusion”
South Africa’s Failure to Guarantee an Inclusive Education for Children with Disabilities
Download the full report
It was only when Sisandua discovered Afrika Tikkun, a non-governmental organization that provides assistance and empowerment programs for parents of children with disabilities, that her confidence grew and with it her determination to find her son a school. Two years after her first attempt and after numerous visits to ensure her application had not been forgotten or lost, she finally succeeded. In January, Ntiskelelo had his first day at an ordinary public school. “This,” Sisandua says, “is the most amazing thing I did as a mother.”
Her success comes at a price, though. The costs of school fees and transport exceed what she earns cleaning houses or washing other people’s dirty laundry. If it weren’t for her mother, who rents out part of their whitewashed tin-roofed house to help pay the bills, she would not be able to keep her son at school. “Education should be free for all, but the government is not supporting us at all,” she says, and for a moment her usually composed expression shows a hint of irritation.
total schools south africa
The self-help group Afrika Tikkun hosts in Orange Farm has not only restored Sisandua’s self-esteem. The group has also helped her understand her child better. “I now know how to handle him without losing my cool. And I can talk about him openly,” she says. “I could not do that at first.” Having once turned her back on her son, Sisandua is now at the forefront of those who encourage other women in a similar situation not to do the same. “They are surprised that I am not ashamed to talk about my child,” she reports. At least four mothers in her neighborhood hide their children indoors for fear of “what people might say” if they saw their disability. Sisandua knows them and talks to them regularly. After much prodding, one has joined Sidinga Uthando, the self-help group, and is finally able to share her experiences and learn about her and her child’s rights.
One day, Sisandua hopes, her son will be able to write his name and express himself about his condition, so that he does not get beaten up by big neighborhood boys for being different. Ntsikeleo, for his part, dreams of becoming a policeman, so that he can “lock up” those who harass him and his friends.
Tired of pen and paper, he jumps up and starts to re-enact a soccer match his mom once took him to, kicking and passing an imaginary ball while commenting on each player’s move as if he was reporting live from Orlando Stadium. Momentarily, the quiet room resonates with the roar and excitement of a Premier League’s match. “I love him more than anything,” says Sisandua, beaming. “I am a matured mother now, and a proud mother of a child with disabilities.”
500,000 disabled students edged out of South African schools
BY TOM MURPHY ON 18 AUGUST 2015 0
Student works with teacher at the Mary Kihn School for Partially Hearing Children, in Cape Town, South Africa. (credit: WycliffeSA/flickr)
While South African government officials crow about their success in meeting the Millennium Development Goal of universal access to primary education, more than a half million disabled children are shut out and receive no education, according to a Human Rights Watch report.
“The current system is ad hoc and expensive, and isolates children with disabilities from other learners,” said Elin Martinez, children’s rights researcher at Human Rights Watch, and author of Complicit in Exclusion: South Africa’s Failure to Guarantee Inclusive Education for Children with Disabilities. “As a result, the government is failing hundreds of thousands of children with disabilities, violating its own policies and laws.”
Among the findings: schools flat-out reject certain disabilities; schools say they can’t accommodate disabilities; schools charge higher fees to accommodate disabilities; students are abused; and overall education is poor. As a result, children can’t access vital skills that would help them find education and jobs as they get older.
Martinez and her team interviewed 135 people across five of South Africa’s nine provinces. A woman named Thandi, from Kwa-Ngwanase, told interviewers that her 8-year-old son Qinisela is not in school because the local school cannot accommodate him. Her story is similar to others in the report ? schools will not take children with Down syndrome because of behavioral issues.
“We tried to put him in a [mainstream]school but they said they couldn’t put him in that school because he has disabilities. The school said that he was naughty,” Thandi said in the report. “Because of Down syndrome he isn’t like other children so they [said they]can’t teach him. At the therapy they promised to phone if there’s a space in a special school. I’ve been waiting since last year.”
These findings fly in the face of legislation that enshrined universal access to primary education that passed shortly after the end of apartheid.The 2001 Education White Paper 6 sought complete inclusion in 20 years. Its goal included 280,000 children with disabilities.
Human Rights Watch argues that the good policy did not translate into meaningful action, and that the government, while claiming success, is failing half a million children.
“At around 99 percent, we have universal primary education, gender equity and universal access to schooling, including going out of our way to solicit development programs,” said South Africa’s Education Minister Angie Motshekga, in a May speech.
Estimates from Human Rights Watch show that the problem worsened in the past 15 years or the government grossly underestimated the size of the problem. Urgent action is needed, according to the report, to ensure that children like Sandile, a 10-year-old boy who is deaf and has partial sight, are in school.
“The South African government needs to admit that it is not providing quality education to all of its children ? in fact, no schooling at all to many who have disabilities,” said Martinez. “The job is not done until all children count just the same in the education system.”
South Africa's disabled children 'excluded from school'
18 August 2015
From the section Africa
Children with disabilities in South Africa
The report found that parents of children with disabilities were often asked to pay extra fees
An estimated 500,000 disabled children are being excluded from South Africa's education system, US-based Human Rights Watch (HRW) says in a report.
HRW says the government has discriminated against disabled children in its allocation of school places.
Children are excluded from mainstream schools and forced to wait years for places at special schools, it says.
The government said it was disappointed by the report, which "trivialised" efforts to help disabled children.
In a statement, South Africa's Department of Basic Education said that HRW had failed to include the ministry's submissions to the final report.
"It is almost as if there is an attempt to sensationalise the very real and very serious challenges faced by learners with special needs," it said.
BBC Africa Live: News updates
The department said it was " working at various levels of government to educationally enrich the lives of children with disabilities".
But campaigners say the government needs to admit that it is not providing quality education to all of its children.
"The job is not done until all children count just the same in the education system," said Elin Martinez, a children's rights researcher and author of the report.
Human Rights Watch researchers also found that inadequate teacher training and understanding of children's disabilities meant children with disabilities were not properly treated in classrooms.
In some cases, children suffered physical violence and neglect in schools, they added.
Children with disabilities in South Africa
Children with disabilities sometimes have to wait up to four years for a place in a special school
A mother of an eight-year-old boy with Down's syndrome told HRW that her child was denied admission because of his illness.
And parents of children with disabilities were often asked to pay additional fees, HRW said.
The 94-page report from the international pressure group found that many adolescents with disabilities lacked basic life skills that should be taught in school and were facing difficulties in getting employment.
In 2007, South Africa was one of the first countries to ratify the UN Disability Rights Treaty, which requires the government to promote an inclusive education system.
HRW said the government should adopt a new policy and legislation that would ensure equal learning opportunities for people with disabilities.
However, the education department said it was working hard to improve data-gathering and screening that would help children with disabilities to go to "neighbourhood schools and receive support in inclusive settings from an early age".
Malawi disability bodies decry noninclusive education
20 August 2015
Posts by Happy Arnold Soko
Owing to lack of knowledge, educational access and technology, children with disability are initially treated as unwanted and segregated from other children, Malawi24 has learnt.
Children with disabilities face huge problems because of attending the same schools as non-disabled children, a development that contradicts the needs of educationists to provide equal and better education.
A three days workshop, organized by Parents of Disabled Children Association of Malawi (PODCAM) and the Federation of Disabled Peoples Organization in Malawi (FEDOMA) is underway in Blantyre to review achievements of different organization on the concept of ‘Inclusive Education.’
Stakeholders during the workshop decried the trend.
Speaking during the workshop, Project Facilitator Diane Mills said the project will identify disabled children who are not in schools.
She said due to lack of knowledge among parents and teachers has as stalled the progress of policy and principle of inclusive education.
Mills articulated the lack of basic school premises that meet educational needs of all children irrespective of their disabilities or limitations to have hindered their right.
“Awareness raising within the communities and schools about the rights of people with disabilities will create positive models. It’s just about changing the attitudes of people. Let’s think about disabled people can do and not focus on what they can not do.
Teachers will be trained with teaching strategies. The progress is very slow but if we are to get it, then there should be proper planning,” stated Mills.
In her remarks, PODCAM Executive Director Miriam Namanja lamented the low number of children with disability attending school.
Disability bodies call for inclusive education. She stated lack of participatory by parents have contributed to the slow progress of the policy. Namanja further advised the need to provide a friendly environment in schools that suits children with disabilities.
She explained, “This training on inclusive education is going to have a huge impact in the development of our nation. This will make parents with disabled children realize the importance of sending them to school. Stakeholders will be trained in various ways. There is very few children with disability that attends school.”
The implementation of the `policy and process’ that allows all children to participate in all programs.
The Policy further allows disabled children should be accepted without any restrictions in all the educational programs meant for other children and denotes equality, and accepts every child with his own unique capabilities.
According to Director of Special Needs Education David Njaidi, about 90 thousand disabled children are attending school in Malawi.
He hinted lack of cost measure to implement equality in education. He said government should set a robust plan to ensure equal access.
Deaf Wolves pack a punch despite disability
my community that deaf people were suffering. Some had nothing to do but wait for a grant, while others drank too much alcohol or did drugs.
“My motivation was to take them away from this and put them on the field, where they can learn discipline and teamwork while keeping fit.”
A game involving deaf players is almost identical to a mainstream soccer match, Bojana said.
“The only difference is that in addition to blowing a whistle, the referee waves a flag to grab the players’ attention.
“We also communicate via hand signals instead of calling out to each other.”
While they regularly play matches against three of the other deaf soccer teams in the province, the players relish the opportunity to go head-to- head with hearing teams.
In their last 12 games, the team has been victorious in six of the battles against mainstream clubs.
The club is affiliated with both the Western Province Deaf Sport Association and the Athlone District Football Association.
Mluleki speaks to the players. (Tammy Petersen, News24)
Boy Makama, 37, believes he has what it takes to play in the Premier Soccer League.
“I am just as good as the players that can hear and I practice just as hard,” he insisted.
“But I constantly have to prove myself against mainstream players. They forget that we are the same as them, we are only unable to hear.”
Makama refuses to allow his disability to limit his dreams.
“I love this game. I work hard because I want to be great. I want to be respected.”
Teammate Dumisani Faku, 23, has perfect hearing, but he joins the team on the field to support his deaf uncle.
“These players are amazing. They work hard and support each other. I love being part of this group,” he said.
While most opponents respect the tenacity of their deaf competitors, some are not as courteous, Faku pointed out.
“I hate it when players make fun of my teammates or treat us like fools. But they don’t realise it just makes us work harder to beat them.”
While the team’s performance is improving by the day, finances are crippling them.
“Among others, some of the players can’t afford togs. We are in desperate need of uniforms and travelling costs to away games are hitting our pockets hard,” Bojana said.
Player Anele Manyashe, 32, appealed to potential sponsors and donors to help “keep the team going”.
“We work hard and do our best when we are on that field. Any company or person that helps us can be guaranteed that the Deaf Wolves won’t let them down.
“This is a proud team. We are dedicated to the game. All we want is a chance.”
- To assist, SMS Bojana on 071 199 7907 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, phone club secretary Andile Pangwa on 083 713 8552.
Ukrainian Mission in Africa: the Lame Walk, the Deaf Hear
By , Christian Telegraph On August 21, 2015
PHOTO VIA FLICKR/CREATIVE COMMONS
This mission trip started with the annual pastor's and leader's conference "Iron sharpened iron" in Accra (the capital of Ghana) organized by the senior bishop and founder of the Lighthouse Chapel International, evangelist and writer Dag Heward-Mills. Thousands of church leaders and pastors attend this conference every year because of their wish to serve God more effectively.
After the conference Pastor Dmitry Makarenko moved to the town Tema, located to the east of the capital Accra, on the Atlantic Ocean. The Ukrainian preacher held two services in the Ashaiman Chapel Square (pastor Samuel Baidoo). "His message about faith caused a very lively reaction during the meeting; people jumped up from their seats, cried and shouted, 'Amen!' supporting the words of the Pastor" - the New Generation Mission's press-centre reports.
After the prayer of the Ukrainian pastor a young man was absolutely healed and he left behind his crutches. During the second meeting in this church deaf and dumb woman began to hear and to speak.
"There is a wonderful atmosphere in the churches", said Dmitry Makarenko. "All people are very open to the sermon and give an emotional response on the message."
The Ukrainian team has two services every day. They also visited an orphanage and brought to the children some food that was a real treat for them.
1)話そう、語ろう、アフリカの障害の状況を！！ ─ アフリカ・日本交流セミナー ─8月22日（土）アフリカ・日本交流セミナーを
Deaf in Africa find hope in the Gospel
Mission Network News
PUBLISHED BY REAGAN HOEZEE ON AUGUST 24, 2015
(Photo courtesy Faith Comes By Hearing)
(Photo courtesy Deaf Bible Society)
Africa (MNN) - For many who can’t hear, simple tasks like communicating one’s feelings and understanding spoken language can be nearly impossible.
But what about the eternal ramifications? Only 2% of Deaf people have ever read or seen God’s Word, making them one of the most unreached and unengaged people groups on earth.
That’s why Deaf Bible and DOOR International, both ministries to the unhearing, have partnered to share Christ with the deaf in Africa. Their goal is to create a self-sustaining evangelism process in Deaf communities by bringing them the Gospel and training villagers for continued outreach.
“What DOOR International has done, is they have taken [it upon] themselves to use a brilliant idea by following Scripture, where Jesus sends the disciples out in pairs of two,” says JR Bucklew of Deaf Bible. “They said that even among the Deaf community, there’s sometimes such a low self-view because ‘We’re deaf, we haven’t been respected in the past by our communities or in our cultures.’
“But when you have them in teams, there’s teamwork that happens, there’s collaboration…there’s admonishing each other, exhorting each other, encouraging each other in the Scripture. And so they’ve trained several key leaders in each country where there’s a Bible translation project. And these leaders will then bring on board what we might consider a ‘ Timothy.’ And so these two guys will go out into the field, and they act as evangelists, pastors, church planters. They start bringing Deaf people together on a weekly basis to just engage with the Scripture.”
But this can’t be done without the proper tools and resources. That’s where Deaf Bible comes in.
“We’ve begun development of solar-powered tablets that can be used in the field. We’ve just done a huge distribution in East Africa of Bible content on micro SD cards, where the content is accessible on smart phones and dumb phones,” Bucklew says. “We’re working…to do everything we can to make Scripture accessible so that these 2×2 teams 2 can engage the community.”
Though all unreached groups equally need salvation, Africa’s Deaf children are especially at risk. They endure horror because of deeply-ingrained cultural myths.
“In Western Kenya, there were several villages where there were fabled rumors that if you wanted to rid yourself of HIV and AIDS, the way you do that is you have sex with a deaf child,” Bucklew says. “And so we were seeing lots of deaf children raped. They end up in prostitution, trafficking, with HIV and STD’s.
“They begin to truly believe that their sole purpose, the reason they are deaf, the reason that they’re here, is to rid people of their HIV and AIDS.”
But hope isn’t lost. Through the work of Deaf Bible and DOOR International, villagers are finding hope in salvation, and children are discovering their value in Christ.
“What happens when the Gospel comes into these communities, and they can sit down and they’re engaging with these 2×2 teams, and they’re seeing the Gospel message, God’s Word in their heart language…: their lives are totally changed because now they’re told, “No, your purpose is in the Gospel,” Bucklew says.
Can you help the Deaf in Africa continue to discover their purpose? One simple way you can help is by prayer. Bucklew asks that you pray for both organizations as they bring God’s Word to the Deaf. You can learn more about Deaf Bible’s work and find ways to support it by clicking here. Click here to learn more about DOOR International and how you can help it continue reaching the Deaf for Christ.
Three pupils die in deaf school hostel fireeNCA
SOUTH AFRICAMonday 24 August 2015 - 9:45am
File: Three pupils were killed in a hostel fire at the Northwest School for Deaf in Leeudoringstad. Photo: Flickr.com / Pete
JOHANNESBURG - Three pupils were killed in a fire in a Northwest School for Deaf hostel in Leeudoringstad near the Vaal River in the early hours of Monday morning.
SAPS spokesperson Colonel Sabatha Mokgwabone said: "The fire broke out around 3am this morning. Police are on the scene and we are waiting further information.
"We have heard the reports that three pupils have been killed, however we still need to verify that information," he added.
In a tweet, DeafSA's national director, Bruno Druchen, confirmed the deaths.
Deaf school was warned of imminent fire
Monday 24 August 2015 - 5:08pm
Northwest, 24 August 2015 - Three pupils aged between 16 and 18 have died in a fire at the North West School for the Deaf in Leeudoringstad. Video: eNCA
JOHANNESBURG - The Northwest School for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Children hostel was warned that it did not comply with the needs of the learners.
Three pupils died and 23 were injured were injured when the fire engulfed the school's dormitories.
According to the Deaf Federation of South Africa , the warning was by US based Rochester Institute of Technology when they visited the school.
"Rochester Institute of Technology identified that the school does not comply to needs for Deaf Learners if there should be a fire, this report was handed to the Department of Education in the North West and nothing was done to ensure that Deaf learner’s safety needs are addressed," DeafSA said in a statement.
"It is very unfortunate that lives must be lost before matters are addressed. This again confirmed that Deaf people are treated like second hand class citizens and not taken seriously by the Department of Education, letters are written to the Minister of Basic Education and there is no response."
However, North West MEC for education and sports development, Maphefo Matsemela said safety at the school was satisfactory.
"I wanted to check if the fire extinguishers didn't expire, they expire in 2016. I checked almost everything that is needed for safety wherever there is fire. I'm convinced that everything was in place...safety here if not 100 percent it was a hundred and 20 percent," said Matsemela.
Some pupils were still recovering in hospital while others have been housed at neighbouring boarding schools.
Meanwhile, North West police said they were investigating the cause of a fire.
Deaf school blaze pupils discharged
August 25 2015 at 01:50pm By Molaole Montsho Comment on this story
Police forensic experts are trying to determine the cause of the fire that killed three pupils at a school for the deaf in North West. Photo: Supplied
Leeudoringstad - All 54 learners who were admitted to hospital after a fire broke out at the North West Secondary School for the Deaf in Leeudoringstad near Wolmaranstad have been discharged, the North West Portfolio Committee on Education heard on Tuesday.
“All the 54 learners have been discharged from hospital last night (Monday),” said Ronell Schutte, circuit manager in Naledi.
Three pupils died in the blaze.
“The learners have been taken to other schools in Wolmaranstad. The boys have been taken to the Wolmaranstad Hoerskool and the girls are at Daeraad Special School.”
Three girls died on Monday when they were trapped in a room after a fire ripped through the girls hostel, while 54 others were admitted to hospital for smoke inhalation and injuries they sustained when they jumped from the first floor to the ground floor in a bid to escaped the raging fire.
Member of the legislature and chair of the committee, Boitumelo Moiloa, said the committee was going to meet with the department of education in an attempt to stop incidents of fire at school facilities in the province.
“This is the second incident to have occurred under their watch. The other incident happened in Christiana two years ago. We are going to meet with the head of department (HOD) and the MEC for education.”
The committee wanted to know what measures had been put in place, to which Schutte replied that the school had fire extinguishers which were working well and the water hose which was able to reach all sides of the school.
Abel and Martha Diseko, parents of Katlego Diseko,16, from Ramatlabama near Mahikeng were too emotional to speak. Katlego was one of the three pupils who died in the blaze.
Katlego was only admitted to the school this year.
Dufil restores hope to the visually impaired
The Nation Newspaper-
Posted By: David laon: August 26, 2015In: Business, News UpdateNo
Dufil restores hope to the visually impaired
L-R: Member, Nigeria Society for the Blind, Adisa Olushola; Vice Chairman, Nigeria Society for the Blind, Mrs Shade Adefisayo; Head of Public Relations, Dufil Prima Foods Plc, Mr Tope Ashiwaju; Chairman, Nigeria Society for the Blind, Mr Asiwaju Fola-Oshibo; Chairman, 10th White Cane Day Celebration, Chief Micheal Olufalomo; and member, Nigeria Society for the Blind, Ogunshina Deborah at the 10th Edition of the White Cane Day in Lagos.
Dufil Prima Foods Plc, makers of Nigeria’s household Noodles brand, Indomie Instant Noodles, has again demonstrated its commitment to the welfare of blind and visually impaired persons in Nigeria.
The company demonstrated this recently through its cash donation and products support for the Nigeria Society for the Blind (NSB) White Cane Day which held at the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos.
Making the donation at the 10th white Cane Day, Mr. Tope Ashiwaju, Public Relations Manager, Dufil Prima Foods Plc, said Dufil has a history of contributing to the care and development of the physically challenged in Nigeria, and thus touching many of their lives as its believe that ‘in every disability, there is ability’.
According to him, “Our environment is not favorable for people with sight, not to talk of people living without sight. Therefore, Dufil Prima Foods Plc saw the need to contribute its quota to ensuring that the visually impaired people have access to quality education and equal rights as other citizens in the country.”
He also added that the company would continue to participate in the White Cane Day and support in the rehabilitation of the visually impaired.
Mr. Ashiwaju Fola-Oshibo, chairman of NSB, in his remark stated that the use of white cane as an effective mobility aid for the blind and visually impaired encourages the blind to be less dependent on their relatives and friends for the purpose of mobility, thus making the blind self-reliant.
Fola-Oshibo however thanked the management of Dufil for their kind gesture towards the Society, urging state and local governments as well as the Federal Government to put in place enough structures to make mobility easy for the blind.
Pupil that died in deaf school fire was 'amazing': familyeNCA
A fire that broke out in the early hours of Monday morning has reportedly killed three pupils at a School of the Deaf in the North West province. Photo: twitter image / @BrunoDruchen KLERKSDORP - An 18-year-old girl, who died in a fire at her school, was an amazing child despite being deaf, her family said on Wednesday.
“She was an amazing child. She enjoyed playing with her mother Dikeledi Koli. You will think they are friends. She also won awards for chess and table tennis,” family member Neo Mothibedi said.
Dinah Koli, from Jouberton in Klerksdorp, was one of the three girls who died when a fire broke out at the North West Secondary School for the Deaf in Leeudoringstad near Wolmaranstad on Monday. Fifty-four other schoolchildren were taken to hospital for smoke inhalation and injuries they sustained when they leaped from the first floor to the ground floor of the hostel attempting to escape the raging fire.
Mothibedi said the family was shocked about the loss of their daughter.
“She was friendly and clever, she was able to raise funds by plaiting her friends’ hair at school and at home,” Mothibedi said.
“We cannot blame anyone for this incident. The security at the school is good. We will wait for the forensic investigation to continue to determine the cause of the fire.”
North West Education MEC Mmaphefo Matsemela said the department would support the families and pupils through this tragic incident.
“The school needs to be cleansed. I will speak to religious leaders to cleanse the school,” said emotionally-drained Matsemela.
Early this month, two pupils and a teacher were killed when their minibus taxi overturned.
Dinah Koli, who wanted to be a medical doctor will be laid to rest on Saturday in Jouberton near Klerksdorp.
- Africa News Agency
Africa: War Photographer Focuses On Plight of 1 Billion Disabled People
By Alex Whiting
London - When war photographer Graeme Robertson met a boy in Uganda whose skin looked as if it was falling off his face, he was shocked to discover the boy had been attacked for being blind.
"Sometimes when you have a blind child they will try and kill them, set them on fire, lock them in a hut for the rest of their life, forget about them," Robertson said, speaking from his home in London.
It is unclear who carries out the attacks, but it is likely to be relatives or members of the community acting under pressure from community elders, he said.
"I was angry that people thought that just because they were disabled, they weren't worth anything.
"I felt I could help. I knew that they were so badly mutilated, they would make powerful images, and if somebody saw these images they would feel something," he said.
Robertson, an award-winning photographer who works for the London-based Guardian newspaper, approached an international charity for the blind, Sightsavers, and together they organised a photography exhibition highlighting the issue.
The exhibition, based on trips to Uganda and India, opened for the second time in London on Aug. 25.
Over the past 20 years, Robertson has covered wars and famines and spent years living in Baghdad and Afghanistan.
"It's not like I'm not used to seeing real human suffering, but this particular project really affected me," he said.
Robertson, who is badly dyslexic, was treated very differently from other children at school and told he would never succeed.
"Everybody should be given at least a chance. I felt these disabled people were not even given the opportunity to succeed," said the father of two young children.
"This one girl I photographed ... she was really badly treated in the community - raped, beaten up, horrific stuff. I couldn't believe this was happening."
Robertson said communities lack understanding about disability, money for equipment and access to specialist schools.
Children able to attend a specialist school blossomed under the encouragement and attention they received, he said.
There are an estimated one billion people with disabilities, about 80 percent of whom live in developing countries, according to Sightsavers.
They were left out of a 15-year international push, which expires this year, to improve living standards in developing countries, including access to health and education, and a reduction in poverty, the charity said.
Uganda has achieved free universal education, but nearly half of all children with disabilities are out of school because of the lack of equipment and staff needed to support them, according to Sightsavers.
"This means that over the 15 years, the lives of people with disabilities have got worse," Natasha Kennedy, policy campaigns manager at Sightsavers, said.
Disability has now been included in a new series of development targets to be agreed by global leaders at a U.N. summit in September, known as the Sustainable Development Goals.
People with disabilities are included in all the targets, including universal access to education and healthcare, and ending poverty.
"It's huge because it means that for the first time ... governments and donors must include people with disability as a principle of global development and not as an afterthought," Kennedy said.
Although the cost of including people with disabilities in targets such as education and healthcare is significant, the cost of leaving them out is even greater, she said.
"These people want to be contributing, out there working, learning, socialising and having fulfilling lives and the only way they can do that is if the systems include them from the very outset," Kennedy said.
"You can't realistically eliminate poverty unless you're reaching the most vulnerable and most marginalised - and they are people with disabilities," she added.
Robertson's photo exhibition will travel to New York to coincide with the U.N. summit there next month.
Mother, I'm already dead - deaf teen's SMSNews24-
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Three burn to death at North West school for the deaf
Durban shack fire victims given temporary shelter
Bucket chain too slow to stop fires engulfing homes in Jika Joe
Johannesburg - "Mother, I'm already dead," a schoolgirl told her mother via SMS moments before she and two other schoolgirls were engulfed by flames at the North West School for the Deaf in Leeudoringstad.
North West education portfolio committee chairperson Boitumelo Moiloa told News24 on Friday the teenager had sent her mother two SMSes around the time the fire started on Monday.
“Mom, there is a lot of smoke in the area. I don't know, we don't know what is happening but myself and my friend have run to the toilet. There's not a lot of smoke here. I don't know what is going to happen. What if I die?" Moiloa said the first SMS had read.
In the second SMS the teen wrote: "Mother I'm already dead."
The teen’s mother could not be reached by News24 for comment.
The three schoolgirls, aged 16, 17, and 18, died in the blaze and another 23 pupils were injured when they jumped from the first floor of the building to escape the fire.
The fire broke out around 01:00 at the school's girls' hostel.
The cause of the fire is not known and is being investigated.
Demands for a detailed report
Moiloa said following the fire, the committee visited the school on Tuesday and urgently requested education MEC Wendy Matsemela to brief the committee on Thursday.
"She [Matsemela] indicated that there is an evacuation plan, there are house mothers and all those things. Then we said as a committee: 'You know what MEC, because this is just a brief report and we were there give us a detailed report'," Moiloa said.
The committee is expecting the report next Monday. On Tuesday the MEC will sit before the committee and go through the report. Following that, the committee will determine the next step.
"For now, we still have the view that there was no evacuation plan and security and all these house mothers," she said.
Moiloa described the fire as "horrible" and saddening.
A similar incident occurred at the Christiana School for the Blind in November 2010 when four boys died in a fire.
HIV-positive man jailed for 12 years for attempting to rape disabled woman in her home
by UK Papers
RELATED STORIES LEICESTER: A FORMER care worker who is HIV-positive has been jailed for 12 years for attempting to rape a disabled woman in her home.
Zimbabwean Bonface Marova went uninvited into the victim's Leicester home after she had taken pain relief medication and was drowsy.
He had befriended her through a mutual friend but turned up unannounced, entering via an unlocked door and asking to use the toilet.
Leicester Crown Court was told he said to the woman, in her late 50s: "Has anyone ever told you you're beautiful?"
She was left traumatised after he pinned her to her chair and touched her breasts before trying to rape her.
Marova, 48, of Woodcote Road, Braunstone, Leicester, denied attempted rape and sexual assault, on December 16.
He claimed he once put his arm around her shoulders in a friendly manner to comfort her, but nothing sexual happened between them.
A jury rejected his account and convicted him unanimously on both counts.
Sentencing, Judge Robert Brown said: "Rape was attempted rather than the full offence because she was wearing a surgical corset for a bad back.
"You befriended her through her close friend and delivered vegetables to her, as you did to others.
"You entered her flat by stealth, to her surprise."
"She protested but you continued to commit the offences and she was unable to raise the alarm.
"You were aware you had HIV and you didn't use a condom; a clearly aggravating feature.
"She was physically disabled and it was an abuse of trust by you, by the fact it was committed in her home, which you entered against her will."
Jacqui Callan, mitigating after the verdicts, said Marova, originally from Zimbabwe, was diagnosed with HIV in 2002 and his condition was being managed as part of a drugs trial at Leicester Royal Infirmary, with daily medication.
She said: "There's no prognosis how it will affect him long term."
Callan said the defendant, whose wife has died, had a partner who lived separately.
He was concerned for the welfare of his four children, aged between 14 and 22, but agencies were involved and "doing their best to keep the family together," she said.
Afterwards, Det Sgt Sarah Walker, of Leicestershire Police sex offences investigation unit, Signal, said: "It was horrific and incredibly distressing for the victim.
"She has mobility difficulties and couldn't even get out of her chair or call for help because the medication she had taken had subdued her.
"It was worse than terrifying and she was left completely traumatised.
"Afterwards, she was too frightened to leave her home and felt imprisoned, but these verdicts will hopefully help her to reclaim her life.
"We are pleased with the sentence, which we hope brings some feeling of justice for the victim."
Marova formerly worked as a care worker and was also involved with a shipping business, the court was told.
The jury did not learn about Marova's HIV status until after the verdicts were announced.
Kenya: Manual for Deaf KidsAllAfrica.com-
By Joseph Ndunda
The Education ministry yesterday launched a manual to train parents and guardians of children with hearing impairment.
The manual, designed by the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development, has uniform material for training.
Education Cabinet Secretary Jacob Kaimenyi said communication is a vital tool in acquiring and applying knowledge, skills and values.
"The majority of children with congenital deafness come from families of hearing people with little or no sign language competencies," he said in a statement read on his behalf by Education secretary Leah Rono.
DOOR International: reaching the Deaf for Christ
Mission Network News-
PUBLISHED ON 1 SEPTEMBER, 2015 BY KATEY HEARTH
DOOR International uses Chronological Bible Storying to share Christ with unreached Deaf communities.
(Image courtesy DOOR International)
International (MNN) - Bible study is a key part of discipleship.
But, “How do you teach a Bible study if you don’t have a Bible, and nobody in your small group or Bible study group has a Bible?” asks Mike Buus, founder of DOOR International.
There is currently no country in the world where a complete translation of God’s Word is available in Sign Language.
Because they don’t have the Bible, a very small percentage of Deaf people have been evangelized. An even smaller percentage has been discipled.
Enter: DOOR International, a ministry dedicated to growing God’s Kingdom amid the global deaf community.
In the beginning It’s been said that all great people and things have small beginnings. Such is true of DOOR International.
Back in the early ‘90s, soon after the fall of the Soviet Union, Mike Buus and his wife were in Romania teaching North American missionaries how to plant churches in the newly-freed Soviet territories.
“In that class, there was a North American missionary who was deaf, and her husband interpreted that training for her,” Buus recalls.
Since its formation in the ’90’s, DOOR International has translated Scripture into 110 sign languages.(Map courtesy DOOR International via Facebook)
“Unbeknownst to me, she contacted a group of her friends back in the United States and said, ‘You need to contact Mike because he can teach people who’ve never been to Bible College or seminary how to plant churches.’”
After gentle persistence on behalf of the woman’s friends, along with a little research and some wise words from Linda, Mike took about 8 deaf individuals from Indiana and two translators under his wing.
“The thing that really got to me was when they said, ‘If we’re in a church long enough, they’ll challenge us to use our spiritual gift. We will almost always end up with a broom or a rake in our hand, because how [would] we teach a group or sing in a choir?’” Buus shares.
“I just said, ‘That can’t be God’s intention!’”
Two years later, when the disciples had been trained in church planting and their group had grown from 8 to 10 eager learners, Buus says he and Linda reassessed.
“We came up with this big, wholly-audacious goal of saying that we were going to train and equip a deaf Christian leadership team from every country of the world in one generation.”
Fast-forward a couple of decades, and they’re well on their way.
DOOR International: present-day
DOOR International 1
“I have been ignoring one Scripture portion from James thinking it is not relevant to the Deaf world: the same Scripture portion which says the tongue is like fire, it can burn the whole body. I was very interested to know how they connected this to the Deaf world teaching point. Later I understood that the tongue is representing the spoken words. The hand is equally relevant to the Deaf. The Deaf person has to be careful in using his hand when they sign, not to gossip, or hurt others or sin with it. This has helped me to know all the Scriptures are true to everyone who wants to know the truth. This has touched my life. I thank God for the sign language Bible translation.”
(Photo, caption courtesy DOOR International via Facebook)
DOOR, working with translation teams of national Deaf people and Wycliffe Bible Translators, is on the cutting edge of beginning “Deaf-hands” Bible translation projects into the Sign Languages of the world.
The Word of God can hardly transform lives if it’s not shared, though. That’s why DOOR sends deaf missionaries two-by-two into unreached deaf communities around the world.
“Deaf are storytellers, and they pass information through telling each other stories,” Buus explains.
That’s why DOOR International missionaries use Bible stories ranging from creation to the cross to introduce others to Jesus.
Today, “We have literally thousands of deaf believers in Africa and India that are now studying the Bible in their own language and are being taught by deaf who’ve been well-trained to explain the stories,” shares Buus.
“But it’s a small beginning. There may be as many as 350 sign languages in the world, so there’s a lot of work to do.”
Tomorrow, we’ll take a look at how YOU can help DOOR International cross the finish line.
Visit DOOR International’s website here to learn more about their ministry.
One Response to “DOOR International: reaching the Deaf for Christ”
Middle Aged Teacher Rapes Deaf & Dumb Student in Lagos
Discussion in 'Metro News' started by Lequte, Yesterday at 6:10 PM. Views count: 558
Nigeria - A 45- year- old teacher , Akintobi Kayode , has been arraigned before an Ikeja Magistrates' court for allegedly putting his sexual organ into the anus of a 14 -year -old deaf and dumb boy.
The Magistrate, Mrs L .Y . Balogun, slammed a bail of N200 , 000 on the accuse with two sureties in like sum. She said one of them should either be a religious leader or a traditional leader .
Kayode, of 8, Oladelu St. , Ogba in Ikeja , is standing trial on a two -count charge of rape and breach of peace.
The accused pleaded not guilty of the offences .
The Prosecutor Jimah Iseghede told the court that the accused committed the offences sometime in May and July at his residence.
Iseghede said the accused after assaulting the boy, overpowered him before he had carnal knowledge of the boy.
“The boy, who is deaf and dumb , resides in the same neighbourhood with the accused.
“The accused always sends the boy on errands and on that day, he also sent him on an errand and lured him to his house and had carnal knowledge of him by penetrating his anus.
“Kayode took advantage of the boy because of his condition . Due to the pains he was experiencing he told his parents what the teacher had done to him , ’’ he said .
Sgt. Iseghede noted that the offences contravened Sections 166 and 258 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State , 2011 .
NAN also reports that Section 258 prescribes life imprisonment for rape or sexual assault by penetration .
The case has been adjourned till Sept.30 for mention.
Youths want to create awareness for the deafeNCA-
LIFE Friday 4 September 2015 - 7:34pm
Johannesburg, 4 September 2015 - September is Deaf Awareness Month, where authorities, civil society and rights groups raise awareness of some of the challenges the deaf community faces on a daily basis. Video: eNCA
JOHANNESBURG - September is Deaf Awareness Month, where authorities, civil society and rights groups raise awareness of some of the challenges the deaf community faces on a daily basis.
Two youths open up about what it's like communicating in a language that's not one of South Africa's 11 official languages.
These two young men say deaf people in South Africa are not only silenced, they're also kept in the dark.
* eNCA reporter Zikhona Tshona filed this report. Watch the video in the gallery above.
Sam Mulangira refuses to let disability keep him downNTV Uganda-
Mulangira says that self pity has no place in his life and he has made the best of an unfortunate situation by embracing a positive outlook.
Losing the ability to use his legs did not dent Sam Mulangira's confidence and self-esteem, it only spurred him on.
Mulangira is a registrar at the NRM Electoral Commission, a job he performs with vigour and enthusiasm. He has met all sorts of high ranking officials and politicians, all of whom he handles with a firm and confident demmeanour.
Mulangira says that self pity has no place in his life and he has made the best of an unfortunate situation by embracing a postive outlook.
Siblings handcuffed, bashed, left disabled
Sep 6, 2015 0 899
By Lungile Tshuma
MATOBO - Three primary school-going siblings from Lukadzi in Matobo were left with serious injuries that could lead to disability after they were reportedly assaulted by a member of the Neighbourhood Watch Committee for throwing stones at an abandoned homestead.
Siblings handcuffed, bashed, left disabled (Picture by Sunday News)
The three children aged nine, 10 and 11 allegedly came under attack from a member of the Neighbourhood Watch Committee, Marko Ngwenya, who has expressed interest in the homestead which was abandoned in 2002.
The parents of the children reported the matter to the police but Ngwenya has not yet been arrested, a development which has unsettled the family. The youngest child is doing Grade Three and the other two are doing Grade Four at Lukadzi Primary School.
Narrating their story to Sunday News in the presence of their parents, the children alleged that Ngwenya took them before they knocked off at school, handcuffed them and forced them to run for close to 5km to the police station.
On their way, the three minors allege that Ngwenya used logs to bash them and slapped them constantly. At the police station, they said nothing was resolved but they had already sustained serious injuries which later resulted in them failing to walk for nearly two weeks.
The youngest child, according to a medical report, has pus coming out of his left ear while the oldest is yet to walk properly. The incident happened on 3 August. According to the doctor’s report, the severity of the youngest child’s injuries is extreme.
“The injuries found the patient to be suffering from were consistent with having been inflicted by stick, sjamboks and logs. The degree of force used to inflict the injuries was very severe and there is a possibility of the patient having a permanent poor hearing problem,” reads the doctor’s report.
The other report revealed that the other child might have a problem with his spine since his back was severely damaged by the beatings. The report reads that he had bruises on the buttocks, swollen left thump, bruises on the forehead and a swollen back. “There is a possibility of a permanent painful back,” reads part of the report.
However, Ngwenya denied the allegations.
“I reported the matter to the police and they gave me a letter giving me powers to take the children to the police camp. Their relatives took them to the police camp in my company,” said the 68-year-old.
“As for the names of people who assaulted the children, they will tell you who assaulted them.”
After being informed that the children were saying he was the one who assaulted them, he said the children were the ones who gave him the name of the person who assaulted them.
The children’s father, Mr Herbert Jamela, castigated police for their failure to address the matter with urgency. He also revealed that he has no money to take his children to specialist doctors.
“I went to Matopo Police Camp demanding answers on why the matter was yet to go to the courts. They gave me $10 to take these children to the clinic and they insisted that I should forgive them but I couldn’t accept such advice as my children deserve justice.
“I am not happy about what happened and I want this person to rot in jail. We want justice to prevail. What was the purpose of putting handcuffs on these children? I am failing to take them to specialist doctors because their conditions are extreme and this means that they can die at anytime. Their morale is very low and they told me that they are not comfortable going to school because other children are mocking them, what pains me most is that the homestead is deserted and there are no windows to talk about,” he said.
Matabeleland South police spokesperson Assistant Inspector Nkosilathi Sibanda confirmed that they were dealing with such a case. However, he said he was not in a position to divulge more information as they were still investigating the matter.
Village head Mr Major Ndlovu described Ngwenya as “troublesome and disrespectful.” He said the children were supposed to be reported to him before the police could intervene.
“The man (Ngwenya) you are talking about is very troublesome and disrespectful in this area. The homestead which he is talking about is not his and I wonder why he has to ill-treat children like that. He did not inform me about such an incident because he knew very well that I was going to tell him to leave the children alone,” said Headman Ndlovu.
Chief Malaki Masuku said he sat down with his village heads and they agreed that they were going to engage police on the matter.
“I am aware of this sad story but I am also still waiting for the feedback from village heads whom I met with a few weeks back. We discussed the matter and I hope that justice will take place,” said Chief Masuku. Sunday News
Adjei Kojo School for the Deaf cries for help
The management of the Tetteh Ocloo State School for the Deaf at Adjei Kojo in the Tema Metropolis has renewed its appeal to the government to address infrastructural challenges facing the school.
The Headmistress of the School, Ms Barbara Ennin, who made the appeal disclosed that work on a two-storey dormitory block for male students, which started in 1999, had come to a standstill while the female dormitory block, which was completed in 2011, was yet to be put to use due to the lack of approval from the appropriate authorities.
She said as a result of these challenges, students travelled long distances from as far as Kasoa, Kpong, Ningo, Prampram to and from school daily and that was negatively impacting on academic work because the children came in late and went home early.
Ms Ennin spoke about problems confronting the school when one of the aspiring National Democratic Congress (NDC) parliamentary candidate for the Tema West Constituency, Mr Bill Boglo-Hedo, presented assorted items, including detergents, bags of rice, sugar, bags of sachet water and soft drinks, to the school.
The headmistress thanked Mr Boglo-Hedo for his benevolence but appealed to him to help the school communicate its sentiments to the right authorities for the completion of the boys’ hostel, as well as the reconstruction of parts of the school’s fence which collapsed during the June 3 floods, stressing that the early completion of the projects would enable the school to accommodate the male students.
Mr Boglo-Hedo, a Pensions Research and Risk Management Officer, as part of the celebration of his birthday, visited the school in fulfilment of his pledge to help the school to engage security personnel to help meet the security needs of the school. He also pledged to help meet the concerns raised by the school to the appropriate authorities.
The aspiring parliamentary candidate said, for the past years, he had celebrated his birthday with the less privileged to inspire and motivate them to aspire to greater heights.
He was optimistic that he would go through the primaries and move on to wrest the seat from the opposition New Patriotic Party to enable him to do more to serve the people.
Liberia: AYWDN Article On Issues Affecting Disabled People in Liberia
Disabled People's views in Liberia are most of time unnoticed, overlooked and ignored. Even though disabled people speak of issues that hinder their growth and development but much is not being done by government and other humanitarian organizations to address their concerns.
In order to advocate for the rights of disabled people including the visually impaired, physically challenged, deaf, albinos, amongst others in Liberia, the Open Society Initiative for East Africa, the Open Society Foundation Youth Initiative and the Disability Right Initiative in Kenya during the November 2011 African Youth With Disabilities Network Steering committee strategic Planning and Training Session set-up the African Youth with Disabilities Network- Liberia Chapter (AYWDN).
The African Youth with Disabilities Network- Liberia Chapter was founded on February 21, 2012 and incorporated on June 5, 2012. The African Youth with Disabilities Network -Liberia Chapter focuses on advocating for the full implementation of the United Nations Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities (UNCRPD), partnering with relevant stakeholders, including government and civil society organizations and the private sector and creating scholarships support for youth with disabilities at primary, secondary, vocational and Tertiary levels.
African Youth with Disabilities Network Liberia-Chapter is grateful to the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) for providing a grant to implement The Capacity Building and Organizational Development Project. The Capacity Building and Organizational Development Project is in 3(three) phases: The establishment of a Liberian Chapter, The Planning and Training Session on the rights of disabled people in Gbarnga, Bong County, and a baseline survey currently being conducted to know the living condition of disabled youth and the various groups of disabled youth in Liberia. Following the survey, a database would be set -up in order for benevolent individuals and institutions interested in assisting disabled youth be cognizant of what disabled youth in Liberia are in need of most.
The Organizational and Development Project also seeks to support AYWDN's goal mainly implementing its institutional and human capacity programs and creating an inclusive and barrier free society where all youth with disabilities will live in dignity and exercise their basic human rights.
At the moment, government does not support or provide subsidies to the African Youth with disabilities Network-Liberia Chapter but only the Open Society Initiative for West Africa funds the organization. AYWDN Motto is "Dignity, Inclusion and Visibility". In other words, people should treat the disabled with respect, be included in all activities and not be marginalized and disabled people be seen and heard in public gatherings. People living with disability in Liberia encounter several challenges; including: lack of support to go to school, no means of feeding and sheltering themselves, their exclusion in decision making processes amongst others.
Since the establishment of the African Youth with Disabilities Network-Liberia Chapter, over two hundred disabled youth have benefited from its Scholarship program. AYWDN now has regional representatives in all of the fifteen counties working to ensure the establishment of AYWDN regional chapters in their respective counties.
The Country Coordinator of the African Youth with Disabilities Network-Liberia Chapter, William Yarsiah is appealing to government to put smiles on the faces of disabled people by providing a conducive learning environment for them and ensuring that their basic needs are met.
Mr. William Yarsiah envisages a Liberia 5(five) years from now where able people will respect disabled people regardless of their statuses in society and involve them in any initiative that will develop Liberia. He has urged disabled people in Liberia to speak up in order for their concerns to be addressed through legislation at the same time frowning on disabled people who beg for alms every day. He also has called on disabled people to seek empowerment opportunities.
The Vision Statement of the AYWDN: to ensure an inclusive and barrier free society where all youth with disabilities live in dignity, exercise their rights and participate in all spheres of life. The Mission Statement: to influence international continental, regional and national laws, policies and programs through partnerships and advocacy for the equalization of opportunities and enjoyment of rights for youth with disabilities.
AYWDN vision and mission statements would be an illusion without the assistance of government and other organizations. It is time that we all join hands to empower disabled people in Liberia. As it is often said that "disability is not inability". African Youth with Disabilities Network -Liberia Chapter kindly solicits material or cash support from any kind-hearted Liberian or charitable organization. AYWDN is located on 21st Street, Sinkor, Fiamah, Matadi Drive, Monrovia, Liberia. Cell numbers: +2310886486683/ +231886205025 or send us an email: email@example.com. We at AYWDN anticipate receiving your support soon.
Traffic warden, handicapped cleaner honoured in Lagos
Published: 08.09.2015 Pulse MixPrinteMail
Adekunle Adebisi (top) and Josephine Ukeme (below) were paid surprise visits by the Made of Black team (Pulse)
The surprise visit by the #madeofblack team was to appreciate them for their consistency, hard work and dedication.
The Guinness Made of Black team today, September 8, 2015 paid a visit to two outstanding citizens in the city of Lagos, recognising them as # madeofblack heroes.
The surprise visit by the #madeofblack team was to appreciate them for their consistency, hard work and dedication.
First was Adekunle Adebisi, a young handicapped man who sweeps the pedestrian bridge at Town Planning Anthony in Lagos. Adebisi who lost his hands a long time ago was nominated by a daily commuter, Henry.
Henry says Adekunle’s dedication to the job was inspiring and he admired him very much. Nominating Adekunle, Henry says, was a way of cheering the zeal his (Adekunle) job, regardless of the circumstances. Henry says Adekunle is his hero.
Adekunle is definitely Made of Black! He is a Lagos City #madeofblack hero!
Another nominee was Mrs Josephine Ukeme, a policewoman, who received quite a number of nominations. Ukeme works effortlessly, day in, day out at Yaba, making sure there is free flow of traffic. Little wonder she received loads of nominations from thankful ‘fans’.
If Ukeme isn’t Made of Black material, then we wonder who is as she’s got the Made of Black attitude, a hero's spirit.
Do you know someone in your city who is doing something extraordinary? Now is the time to nominate him/her as you hero, a #madeofblack citizen! Log on to the Guinness Facebook page to do so: https://www.facebook.com/GuinnessNigeria