Friday, July 29, 2011

Disability Inclusion in Drought and Food Crisis Emergency Response

Disability Inclusive Action Plans
  • Amend ‘Rapid Assessment’ forms to ensure pro-active registration of persons with disabilities, for all relief, recovery and preparedness activities.
  • Set indicators which identify approximately 15% of the target group as persons with disabilities and older persons. Disaggregate data to monitor how effectively the program is reaching this group.
  • Prioritise vulnerable groups including persons with disabilities and older persons through separate distribution queues. Ensure children access Vitamin A and vaccination campaigns.
  • Where possible, involve persons with disabilities and ‘Disabled People’s Organisations’ in planning and operations in order to benefit from their expertise.
  • Identify service providers who can assist in providing outreach and follow up with persons with disabilities who are unable to attend distribution points.
  • Ensure linkages with existing community based services to build up a support network.
  • In camps, locate persons with disabilities close to water, sanitation, health posts, food and fuel distribution points, and to well lit, secure areas.
  • Prioritise persons with disabilities for reunification with family, carers or community members, who know their individual requirements.
  • Prioritise children with disabilities for routine protection monitoring and ensure they are able to access and do access ‘child friendly spaces’.
  • Ensure that Gender Based Violence protection activities are including women with disabilities.
  • Meet the specific needs persons with disabilities and older persons may have, including for nutrient dense foods, sunlight exposure for Vitamin D, feeding spoons or straws, access to essential medications and mobility devices (1).
  • Provide information about the availability of food and services through various formats accessible to persons with vision, hearing or intellectual impairments.
  • Ensure distribution points, water, sanitation and other facilities are physically accessible, through the provision of ramps, rails, appropriate seating and adapted water and food storage containers.
  • Ensure all persons have the means to carry supplies to their homes or shelters.
  • Be patient and respectful to people with psychosocial or intellectual impairments, or ask if they would like to bring someone to represent them.
  • Ensure inclusion of persons with disabilities in all longer term food security and community development initiatives, including in livelihood (e.g. micro-finance, agriculture, gardening, livestock keeping, paid employment), education, health, social inclusion and empowerment (Community Based Rehabilitation approaches).
  • Advocate strongly to governments, donors and NGOs for disability inclusion in all emergency, disaster preparedness and development activities.
Further information: Handicap International have prepared a comprehensive ‘Disability Checklist for Emergency Response’ which can be accessed at

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