Each year, the International Day of Persons with Disabilities is observed on December 3 to support the rights and dignity of disabled persons, bring attention to disability issues, and promote the inclusion of persons with disabilities into all aspects of society. The annual observance has been organized by the UN since 1992.   

The theme for the 2022 International Day of Persons with Disabilities is “Transformative solutions for inclusive development: the role of innovation in fueling an accessible and equitable world.” At Counterpart, building inclusive, sustainable communities in which people thrive is at the heart of our work. Since our founding in 1965, social inclusion, including disability inclusion, has been one of our guiding principles because we believe every community member matters.  

Here are some stories and programs that capture how Counterpart’s work around the world – from El Salvador to Timor-Leste – bring persons with disabilities into civic life, supporting their ability to influence decisions that affect their lives.

Disabled Nigerien Woman Finds Her Voice in Local Governance  

Rabi Abdou was born with a disability to a poor Nigerien family. Because of the social stigma attached to disabilities, Abdou never had the opportunity to go to school and begged on the street to earn a living.   

But today, Abdou is an active participant in local affairs as a member of the Citizen Monitoring Committee (CVC) and a representative of the Association of People Living with Disability in Guidan Roumdji. 

Read the rest of Abdou’s story here 

 

Private Sector Partnership Strengthens NGO Financial Literacy  

Rosalia Tereza Pereira is a 24-year-old employee of Associação de Deficientes de Timor-Leste (ADTL), an advocacy organization for persons with disabilities in Timor-Leste and the national umbrella body for disability organizations country-wide. Having grown up in Metinaro, she joined ADTL to realize her dream of becoming an advocate for the rights of persons with disabilities and to increase awareness of and inclusiveness for disabled persons on a national scale. 

 Read more of Pereira’s story here 

 Rights and Dignity Project 

The Rights and Dignity Project in El Salvador promotes the development of an integrated network of human rights actors from the government, civil society, the private sector, and academia. The project is focusing its efforts on the following four population groups: women victims of gender-based violence, youth, the LGBTI community, and people with disabilities. 

 Learn more about the Rights and Dignity Project here 

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