Gender and Disability

Our mission is to create a more equal and inclusive world. Our work targets women, people with disabilities, ethnic minorities, and other disadvantaged groups to ensure that the benefits of development are shared equally.

Social inclusion is integral to all of our projects, whether it be a water point, kitchen garden or micro-finance group. Including minorities in decision-making processes provides better outcomes for the whole community. Social inclusion is often rooted in education, which helps people to identify and challenge stigmas, and gives the most vulnerable in the community access to life-changing opportunities.

We also hold gender awareness training for staff and partners, carry out gender assessments of projects, and adhere to an inclusive gender policy.

Africa

In Malawi, people with disabilities often face tremendous challenges when trying to access water. Those with albinism face terrible stigma and are at high risk of encountering violence when fetching water. We address this by involving people with albinism in decision-making about water projects, educating governments about social inclusion, and running community awareness campaigns to reduce social stigma.

Read more about our work in Africa

Asia

In Cambodia, we target women and girls in Phnom Penh for vocational education, savings groups, and business training. Women can improve their income by starting their own business or learning a trade. In turn, this can help them to achieve greater standing in the household and community.

We also help women and children who have survived domestic violence, rape, human trafficking, and other forms of abuse. Our partner, the Cambodian Women’s Crisis Center, offers safe haven, legal services, and counselling to those fleeing danger. They also offer education and training programs so women can find work and earn good incomes, empowering them to leave abusive situations.

In Vietnam, our Community-based Tourism project targets ethnic minorities, especially women, in remote communities. Through tourism, ethnic groups such as the Muong and Dao can earn good incomes, and share their culture with outsiders. Women also participate in savings groups. They can borrow money from the group to improve their tourism services, such as upgrading their homestays. Women can also draw on the collective savings in tough times.

In Bangladesh, the Walk for Life project strives to reduce the stigma around people with clubfoot. In Bangladesh, many people believe that clubfoot is caused by evil spirits, or is punishment for the mother’s misdeeds. Our advocacy and awareness-raising campaigns reach thousands of people every year, educating them about clubfoot, and encouraging parents, doctors and community leaders to refer children to Walk for Life clinics.

Read more about our work in Asia

Pacific

In Timor Leste, we work with PRADET (Psycho-social Recovery and Development in East Timor) to offer mental health rehabilitation and psycho-social support. With PRADET, we help women and young men in prison by providing counselling and life skills education, and reconnecting them with their families.

PRADET provides psycho-social rehabilitation services for people recovering from mental illness and trauma so they can become independent, and reintegrate with their families and communities. Their advocacy and education work also seeks to remove the stigma around mental illness. Meanwhile, the Safe Place program helps people experiencing domestic violence, sexual assault, child abuse, and human trafficking. Safe Place provides accommodation, counselling, medical and forensic services, in addition to running vocational training to empower women to earn good incomes and escape abuse.

Read more about our work in the Pacific

Stories from the field

Read stories from our gender and disability projects