Disability study confab ends

Thursday, March 26, 2009
Voluntary Services Overseas (VSO) with support from Big Lottery Fund (BLF), last Tuesday organised a-day national validation workshop on National Disability Research, at the Tango conference hall, Kanifing.

The objective of the workshop was to validate the outcome of the research with the participation of key stakeholders. According to Haddy Njie, VSO director, the research is a key component of empowering people with disabilities. She then added that they needed baseline information on issues like availability and and accessibility of health services, rehabilitation centres and information on general attitudes towards people with disabilities.

Speaking on behalf of Dr Kujejatou Manneh, country director, Action Aid The Gambia, Momodou Wuri Jallow, partnership and capacity building manager Action Aid said, Action Aid is an international charity yearning for a world without poverty and injustice in which every person enjoys their right to a life of dignity. He added that disability, as defined conventionally,  is a lack of ability related to a personal or group standard or norm.

Also speaking, Ndella Faye Colley, programme manager VSO said, the scope of the research was countrywide, targeting both persons with disabilities and persons without disabilities, to gather relevant information on the issues within the context of The Gambia. According to Colley, disability is a global phenomenon and the World Health Organisation (WHO) estimated that 10% of any population has some form of disability.

The findings of this research highlighted recent developments in disabilities from national to the global scene, in the areas of policy, legislation and development actions  being implemented. Other findings concerned the local context and include attitude towards people with disabilities, awareness and knowledge on available medical services, membership and participation in family and community lives,” she concluded.
Author: by Asanatou Bojang