Community Based Rehabilitation (CBR) CAN Tue, 17 Oct 2017 12:43:10 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Community Based Rehabilitation (CBR) 32 32 135483216 CBR Africa Network (CAN) in the Media Tue, 26 Sep 2017 07:23:02 +0000 As a means of promoting CBR as a development strategy, CAN engages media to raise debate. CAN’s Executive Director recently had an opportunity to discuss CBR in Uganda. You can join the debate here

External Consultant required in Rwanda Tue, 19 Sep 2017 08:38:02 +0000 In collaborations with Ministry of Local Government, the National Council of Persons with Disability, Rwanda, DPOs, Public Institutions are developing national CBID/CBR program and guidelines. Experienced Consultant with regional and local national context is being sought to lead the process. Interested parties should follow the link here or download via Handicap international link.


2 nd CBR World Congress Mon, 18 Sep 2017 08:27:37 +0000 In 2016, the 2nd CBR World Congress held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia observed that there is growing need to  recognise the potential of CBR as a key bottom-up strategy to support countries to achieve their development goals by building an inclusive world. As such, several recommendations were made one of which included; Governments, as the duty bearers, should  take responsibility for sustaining CBR programmes, managed together with disabled people’s organisations and key community/national stakeholders. For further reading click here.

Consultancy services required Fri, 15 Sep 2017 13:30:03 +0000 CAN is seeking to recruit the service provider with good understanding on the use of video for advocacy and communication in addition to adequate knowledge on CRPD and CBR as a development strategy to undertake short assignment. Please download the terms of reference here 

6th CBR Africa conference 2018-Call for abstracts extension Thu, 24 Aug 2017 09:09:27 +0000 Due to public demand the call for abstracts for the 6th CBR Africa Conference in Livingstone Zambia has been extended to September 30 2017. Please visit the link for details on how to submit your abstracts.

400 delegates for CBR Africa Conference 2018 Thu, 24 Aug 2017 08:40:45 +0000 5th CBR Africa conference
Every thing counts: Participants keenly following the proceedings of the 5th CBR Africa conference. Credit: Joseph Malinga

At least over 400 delegates from different parts of the world are expected to attend the CBR conference on inclusive development scheduled to take place in Livingstone, Zambia starting from 7th to 11th May 2018. The conference, whose theme is ‘CBR for resilience building and sustainable development: leave no one behind’ is jointly organised by CBR Africa Network (CAN) and the government of Zambia.

The conference is expected to influence stakeholders’ actions of the participating countries in ensuring disability issues are integrated in the development agenda. This is an opportunity for stakeholders to learn and unlearn how to effectively ensure the quality of life of persons with disability.

The conference aims to share good practices and lessons learnt, providing a forum for dialoguing among CBR participants (Government, Disabled Peoples Organizations, Civil Society and Academia); promote disability mainstreaming and inclusion in line with the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

It will also provide opportunities for acquiring new knowledge and skills, demonstrate work CBR practitioners have done, generate resolutions and recommendations that are relevant to human rights and inclusive development agenda.

Visit CAN website for registration details. Follow us on Face book, Twitter (#cbrconf2018).

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CBR Guidelines: A Bridge to Inclusive Society Beyond the 2015 Development Framework Thu, 24 Aug 2017 08:29:56 +0000  

Do you know how relevant WHO CBR guidelines are towards improved quality of  life of PWDs? CAN is happy to release yet another edition of her publication from which you will find answers to most unresolved issues with regard to CBR implementation in Africa:  The latest CAN Book discusses some of the major topics in CBR today. Download  your copy (in English) and French version  here for free.

East Africa becomes common area of higher learning Thu, 24 Aug 2017 08:25:49 +0000 East African Conference
Scholars in East Africa attending the 17th East African Institutional linkage Conference on Special Needs, Inclusive Education and Rehabilitation hosted by Kyambogo University at Essella Country Hotel from 9th to 12th May 2017

Learners with disabilities in East African region will soon start accessing equal educational opportunities once the Quality Assurance Guidelines (QAG) on Special Needs and Inclusive Education are approved.

The Inter University Council of East Africa (IUCEA) is in the final stages of developing the guidelines in preparation for the declaration of East African region as a common are of higher education. The declaration is expected in 2017. Once finalised, all Institutions of Higher Learning are expected to implement the guidelines.

IUCEA through National Councils of Higher Education (NCHE) of respective member countries, will ensure institutions of higher learning adhere to the guidelines, meaning that learners including those with disabilities are eligible to study at any institutions in East African region.

“This will address the issue of exclusion of persons with disabilities thus ensuring equalisation of opportunities,” Mr Victor Locoro, a Lecturer at Kyambogo University in the Department of Community and Disability Studies, says.

Mr Locoro, was speaking during the 17th East African Institutional linkage Conference on Special Needs, Inclusive Education and Rehabilitation hosted by Kyambogo University at Essella Country Hotel from 9th to 12th May 2017.

He said although the IUCEA initially developed QAGs, they were discriminating learner with disabilities. In 2014, IUCEA, consequently started the process of developing QAGs that are disability sensitive. IUCEA is mandated to ensure quality of higher education in the East African member countries.

According to Locoro, many universities have for long violated the rights of learners with disabilities. “In Uganda for instance, students with disabilities study courses they did not apply for. You find a student applies for a course in statistics of economics but ends up doing counseling and guidance. This amounts to a violation of the student’s right. You can’t force someone study what they don’t need,” Locoro argues.

Ugandan government universities admit students with disabilities on two stages; those who meet the cut-off-points for a particular course and those who get in through the Affirmative Action, which has only 64 slots. Majority of learners with disabilities joining university through Affirmative Action often receive courses they did not apply for.

The new QAGs, do not only address admission issues but the all-inclusive educational needs of persons with disabilities such as accessibility, environment, methodologies, and adaption of literature to meet the needs of learners with disabilities.

By Joseph Malinga

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Dreaming big: Zambian Person with Disability aspires to become president Wed, 23 Aug 2017 07:20:45 +0000 CBR
Banda, the aspiring Zambian President

This may sound to you like a day dream.  For a young man with physical disability to crave for presidency ─ the highest office in the land, ─ is probably unthinkable in a country where discrimination against Persons with Disabilities still reigns.

Yet for a 24-year-old Ian Banda, his dream is achievable even when he is aware of the discriminatory tendencies in his country. To him, it is all, but an achievable task. All he needs is a favourable environment for him to exercise his right.

Born on 11 February 1993 in Lusaka, Zambia, Banda’s motivation stems from his great interest in promoting the rights of Persons with Disabilities. He believes that until Persons with Disabilities have taken charge of the highest leadership positions in their respective communities, issues pertaining to inclusive development may continue to elude them. He feels persons with disabilities are not active in leadership especially in politics, which is why he is offering himself as a president once opportunity strikes.

Although Banda uses a wheelchair to undertake errands, he has refused to let his physical impairment define and limit him from exploiting his potential. Banda is already working towards releasing his dream and he is taking advantage of every opportunity to build his capacity. Not only is Banda interested in leadership, he is also already a public speaker and a poet as well as a comedian. He is also passionate about the rights of children and youths with disabilities and speaks out against Gender Based Violence.

Given his charisma and determination, Banda recently won an award ─ Washington Mandela Fellowship. By this he will spend six weeks in an intensive leadership training in the United States. Banda learnt about the Mandela fellowship during his visit to the Information Resource Centre (IRC) at the US Embassy. He had been invited to an entrepreneurship summit by the US Embassy at government complex, where he was encouraged to sign up at the IRC in order to learn more about US government programmes.

I met a friend called Temba Muimo who was a Mandela fellow at the entrepreneurship summit and he encouraged me to apply for the same. I went to the embassy and made the application. I went for interviews first week of February 2017 and was formally contacted on 14th March to say I had been awarded the opportunity,” Banda said with joy.

Banda intends to use this Mandela fellowship opportunity to learn more leadership issues as well as share his knowledge on disability rights. His aspiration is to become a role model for other youths with disabilities. To him, this will encourage parents of children with disabilities to educate their children and refrain from hiding them in the houses. “It was a dream come true,” Banda added, “I was very excited that I could move to another level in my life. I am motivated and excited. It will be my first time to fly and I really look forward to that.”.

Banda also doubles as a member of the youth equality disability pressure group under Zambia Association of Parents of Children with Disabilities (ZAPCD), which was formed in 2013 with the support of Disability Rights Watch. Through this pressure group Banda, together with a group of youths and children with disabilities and their parents, in 2014 presented a petition to the Human Rights Commission demanding for the promotion and protection of the rights of children with disabilities. His effort later compelled the Commission to appoint a disability focal point person and embark on activities to monitor Zambia’s domestication of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Banda making a presentation

“I keep learning a lot through the pressure group; I have learnt that persons with disabilities have rights. I am looking forward to a day when persons with disabilities will enjoy their rights to the fullest,” he said.
Banda, a member of the IRC at the US embassy, started his primary school at the University Teaching Hospital (UTH) Special School where he did Grade 1 and 2. Then he went to Dag Hammarskjöld boarding school in Luanshya where he did Grade 3-6. Whilst in school he developed a problem of constipation which forced him to relocate back to Lusaka to be close to his mother for care and support. He then started school at new Kanyama Primary School where he did Grade 8 and 9.

He later joined Kabulonga Boys Secondary School where he did his Grade 10 to 12 and completed in 2015. Whilst at Kabulonga Boys his leadership potential was notable and a result he was appointed as prefect in Grade12. He is also an active member of Youth Alive Club. Banda is currently a second-year student offering a certificate course in Insurance at the Zambia College of Pension and Insurance Trust ZCPIT. He is being sponsored by Archie Hinchcliffe Disability Intervention AHDI. Banda is so entrenched in advocating for the rights of persons with disabilities that even in school he speaks for the other learners at the college who have now come to terms that persons with disabilities can achieve what all other people can if only they are provided with a supportive environment.

One interesting thing is that Banda hopes to own an insurance company and employ many young people. It is this level of determination that has caught the Disability Rights Watch’s attention who are now planning to reward him as its Goodwill Ambassador for Children and Youths with Disabilities in Zambia as soon as he returns from the US.

Bruce Chooma, the writer of this article  is a participant of a writing Skills Workshop held in Zambia June 2017  

Restoring Hope: the benefit of effective CBR initiatives in Zambia Thu, 03 Aug 2017 10:24:26 +0000
Bruce Nasilele, explains how he does his work

Bruce Mubuyayeta Nasilele, 37, is a resident of Dambwa North in Livingstone, Zambia. He is a member of Zambia Psychosocial Disability Association and Zambia Association for Hydrocephalus and Spinal Bifida.

Nasilele lives with psychosocial disability.  He suffered from cerebral malaria and spine problems during childhood  and since then, he has had to cope with community stigma and discrimination from his family and community members.

Given his disability, Nasilele could subtly act in compromising ways that at some point landed him in jail for Juvenile delinquency. While in prison, Nasilele received correctional and rehabilitation services from Livingstone Central Hospital. This later turned out to be a turning point in his life. The hospital did not only help him recover, but was able to help him realise his potential.

Nasilele is skilful in making assistive devices such as CP Chairs, corner seats as well as standing frames for children born with disabilities — more so those with cerebral palsy.  After fully recovering from mental illness he opted to volunteer his services with Livingstone Central Hospital in the Rehabilitation services department.

On top of the locally available materials such as newspapers, carton boxes and papers that he collected from various offices to make the assistive devices, the hospital administration provided him with a start-up capital. Ever since he embarked on this trade, some of his products are sold to raise upkeep, while the rest are handed over to the hospital for distribution to children born with disabilities.

Some of the products made by Nasilele

20 years down the road, Nasilele is not about to regret contributing to the improved lives of fellow persons with disabilities. Besides, making the assistive devices, during his free time Nasilele, provides counselling to persons with psychosocial disabilities.

Nasilele’s motivation is anchored on maximising equity in development for all regardless of one’s condition. “I believe that you must leave a place better than the way you found it,” He said with a smile, “And develop a place from lower to higher levels towards a conducive environment for others.”

His experience supporting persons with disabilities has not only impacted on his character, but has inspired him greatly to engage in sensitising their families and interested CBR stakeholders on the challenges that persons with psychosocial disability face.

Despite everything said above, Nasilele’s life is not far from poverty stricken. From the look of things, the hospital is not about to think of any interventions that might change his financial status, even when he is contributing to the wellbeing of children with cerebral palsy. Neither has he thought of turning his trade into real employment for himself and supply the hospital with the products at a commercial rate.

“I haven’t thought that way, all I can say is that this type of work requires a quiet environment which am enjoying at the moment and good for my concentration and healing process,”  Nasilele, adds.

Nevertheless, Nasilele is still happy that he is contributing towards the development of fellow persons with disabilities.  From his work he believes he is getting double satisfaction. Firstly, his work helps him to cope with the psychosocial disability because he works under a quiet environment. Secondly, his work helps impact on the children with cerebral palsy, their families and the communities in which they live.

“It is a two-way benefit to myself and to the children. It also changes parents’ attitudes and how the community treats us as persons with disabilities,” emphasised, Nasilele.

One thing Nasilele is sure of is the discrimination of persons with disabilities, which he says is still too much in the community; and unless stakeholders understand that all humans are equal despite their diversity, people like him may continue remaining at the periphery of society.  His story is therefore an indication that effective CBR initiatives can have great impact on society.


This article was written by participants of the writing skills workshop held in Livingstone, Zambia – June 2017. Contributors: Julius Nantungapa Simfukwe, Musola Catherine Kaseketi, Mweene Gelasius, Mubila Mubila, Alick Yambayamba, Eckiwe Kamanga, Mutinta Makondo, Margaret Nkhoma, Precious Moonga and Maambo Lemba.