PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES

In this issue we look at a very complex subject. There are many different kinds of disability which range from minor ones that others may not notice, to life-threatening ones. In a few pages we are not attempting to give very much practical information. Instead, we have chosen to concentrate on our own attitudes to those with disabilities. Each one of us can change our way of thinking, our way of responding, our way of ensuring that people with disabilities are fully included in our communities. Many with disabilities have learnt to accept their situation, but they often find it much harder to cope with the attitudes of those around them.

Please find below articles from Footsteps issue 49 in html.

To download a pdf version of Footsteps issue 49 click here (961K).


  • Action on disability

    by Aisha Yousafzai, Maria Kangere and Sheila Wirz. A disability can result from many kinds of medical conditions and will limit the activities in which a person can participate. People with disabilities are frequently ignored by their communities. However, UNDP (United Nations Development Programme) figures suggest that, on average, 5% (1 in 20) of the population of most countries have either a moderate or severe disability.

    Read More
  • Bible study: Disabilities

    Disabilities: knowing your true value  At a consultation on disability in Oxford 1998, it was said: ‘We want our disabilities to be seen as part of the rich diversity that God has created. We want to be given the dignity that God has given us in our differences.’

    Read More
  • Case Study: Sophal’s story

    by Rachel M Smith. Cambodia has one of the highest rates of people with disabilities in the world, partly a result of years of war and civil conflict. Nearly half of Cambodia’s population is under the age of 18, so many people with disabilities in Cambodia are in fact children.

    Read More
  • Community participation in improving quality of life

    by Katharina Haller. One of the most important things to consider when supporting people with disabilities, is the need to encourage their family and community to help them find their rightful place in society. Medical help is not enough. The attitudes of family members, friends and the wider community are the engine that drives the whole process. This is an educational process in which the whole society should participate.

    Read More
  • Editorial

    In this issue we look at a very complex subject. There are many different kinds of disability which range from minor ones that others may not notice, to life-threatening ones. In a few pages we are not attempting to give very much practical information. Instead, we have chosen to concentrate on our own attitudes to those with disabilities. Each one of us can change our way of thinking, our way of responding, our way of ensuring that people with disabilities are fully included in our ...

    Read More
  • Epilepsy: A worldwide problem

    There are an estimated 50 million people with epilepsy in the world. The majority of them (85%) live in the developing world, where there is often considerable discrimination due to ignorance about the condition and many difficulties in getting effective treatment. The Global Campaign against Epilepsy aims to overcome the medical and social barriers that affect the quality of life of those with epilepsy.

    Read More
  • Income generating workshops for people with disabilities

    by Susie Hart. In 1997 I spent three months at a L’Arche community in Kampala, Uganda. L’Arche is a Christian organisation that provides a lifelong family environment for people with learning difficulties, living together with one another and their carers. Many of their communities have craft workshops to provide income and useful activities for their members. When I arrived, equipped only with a small bag of candle making equipment, I found to my dismay there was no workshop and I was ...

    Read More
  • Letters

    Networking to help people I want to thank Pas a Pas for linking me with a partner who has encouraged me in my work with people with disabilities. He is Mr Robert Scott of the Global Campaign against Epilepsy. They want to work with health and development workers interested in epilepsy (see page 16).

    Read More
  • Opening the door

    1. Problems and prejudices People with disabilities are often made to feel excluded from society. We use the image of a closed door to show that negative attitudes towards these people mean that they are not given the skills or the opportunities that can improve their quality of life. Sometimes children are hidden away behind a closed door.

    Read More
  • Resources

    A Curriculum Guide for Teaching Young Learning Disabled Children by Robert Deller This is a very useful and practical curriculum developed for those working with children who have mental disabilities. The curriculum uses a system of checklists to help identify what a child can do. An individual education plan can then be developed for each child, focusing on the skills that a particular child needs to learn. For example, physical skills include head control, learning to sit, learning to crawl, ...

    Read More
  • Sharing skills in beekeeping

    by Michael Duggan and Paul Draper. Like many remote places in the world, the island of Rodrigues, 350 miles NE of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean, has a number of poor people with disabilities. The island is only eight miles by four miles in size with a rapidly growing population...

    Read More
  • Working with children with disabilities

    Having a child with disabilities is a challenge for all parents, whether they see the child as a punishment or, rightly, as a gift from God. Although most parents care for these children in the sense of keeping them warm, sheltered and fed, there is often little understanding of the importance and value of stimulating their development. It is easy to think that they can never respond or develop, but the experience of a centre for children with disabilities in North Africa shows that progress ...

    Read More