From 2nd till 6th of May 2016, Mr. Murali Padmanabhan, regional gender and disability inclusion advisor of ICCO and Light for the World, paid a visit to the North East Rural Livelihood Project (NERLP) in the state of Sikkim. During the visit it was possible to have conversations and consultation with District project management (south & west) teams, State Coordinator and Beneficiaries. On May 9th the Programme Director of NERLP was visited and the following findings and recommendations were shared and concrete follow-up steps were agreed.
Main findings of the visit:
- 50% of persons with disabilities live in rural areas.
- 80-90% of disabled persons of working age are unemployed.
- There is a positive environment and willingness of the NERLP stakeholders to consider disability mainstreaming, but staff lack the skills to do it.
- Non-availability of disability disaggregated data in the NERLP programme.
- Disability is being viewed from a medical or charity point of view.
- Lack of deliberate attempts to include persons with disabilities (disadvantaged) within the interventions.
- Absence of drive to enrol youth with disabilities in skill development program.
- Challenging geographical environment and poor accessible infrastructure.
- Limited facilities/schemes/program to promote rural livelihood options among persons with disabilities.
- Limited information, tools, techniques, knowledge and skills among the development agencies to promote inclusion of persons with disabilities.
For more information on this subject, contact Murali Padmanabhan.