Pacific Disability Forum
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PDF Weekly Update - 20 April 2012
20 April 2012
PDF Weekly Update
20 April 2012
Greetings from the Pacific Disability Forum!
The aspiration of every woman and girls with disabilities in the Pacific is to be respected as an equal counterpart. Women with disabilities have tolerated a lot of hardship and constrain in society in trying to gain equal access to education; training and decent work which has lead to many cross cutting issues in their lives. They are frequently exposed to discrimination, intimidation and sexual violence. Many face poverty and social exclusion as well for not being able to access such education due to the lack of accessibility.
Our Leaders in the Pacific have showed their commitment by signing the Pacific Regional Strategy on Disability and many persons with disabilities have taken a bold step forward in leading their DPOs in standing up for disabilities rights. The onus is on the rest of us to work together; DPOs, development partners, civil society, our families and supporters to make our Pacific region truly disability inclusive.
PDF is proud of the number of women with disabilities in the Pacific who have stood up and have shown willingness and courage in better promoting women’s rights especially for women with disabilities. Their actions have brought about changes in enabling women with disabilities within their community to break out of the vicious circle of neglect, poverty and isolation. Together with a common voice, and with their courageous leadership, women with disabilities have managed to push forward their fundamental rights and what they deserve in society.
Today PDF is so proud in congratulating PDF Co-Chairperson, Savina Nongebatu, for winning the International Women of Courage Award which is an American award presented annually by the United States Department of State to women around the world who have shown leadership, courage, resourcefulness and willingness to sacrifice for others, especially for better promotion of women's rights.
Have a blessed weekend.
In the news this week, we take a look at Savina winning the US Women Courage award; PNGADP mourns the passing of Ms Anna Hitovea; CINDC new coordinator; Blind Persons Association established in Vanuatu; Enhancing our Voice: Disability Rights Fund Becomes an Independent Public Charity; 2012 MMAC team profiles: NMPASI; Final report for Capacity Development for Efficient and Effective DPO in the Pacific Research and Research on Disability, Poverty and Livelihood in Fiji.
Savina wins US Women Courage Award
(Source: Solomon Star Online, 30th March 2012)
Savina Nongebatu was awarded this year’s international women of courage award of Solomon Islands.
VICE-president of people with disability Solomon Islands (PWDSI) Savina Nongebatu was awarded this year’s international women of courage award of Solomon Islands.
Savina received her award from the US Ambassador to Solomon Islands, Teddy Taylor in Honiara yesterday.
The Secretary’s international women of courage award is an American award presented annually by the US State Department to women around the world who have shown leadership, courage, resourcefulness and willingness to sacrifice for others, especially for better promotion of women’s rights.
Mr Taylor when presenting the award said Ms Savina is a special person who spent most of the last decade overcoming adversity and championing the cause of people with disabilities.
“Through her volunteer work, leadership and relentless advocacy, Ms Savina successfully secured funding for the organization, people with disability (PWDSI).”
He said today PWDSI has not only flourished but also has chapters in the provinces headed by people with disabilities.
“Through her own initiative she continues to encourage, mentor and provide leadership.”
The Ambassador added she is a great ambassador for the Solomon Islands.
In response Ms Savina said she was honored to have received the award.
The minister for women Peter Tom on behalf of the Government congratulates Ms Savina of the award, and is pleased of the award to recognise the rights of women and their achievement.
Past recipients were Sister Doreen Awaiasi, Apolonia Talo and Martha Horiwapu.
PNGADP mourns the passing of Ms Anna Hitovea
(Source: Ipul Powaseu, PNGADP – 17 April 2012)
PNGADP and the PNG Blind Union have lost one of its vocal members, Ms Anna Hitovea who passed away after suffering from a long illness. Anna was the vice president of the PNG Blind Union until her death last week Wednesday 4 April 2012.
Anna was a great athlete especially in field events such as shot put and javelin in the 1990s. She is survived by her daughter Esther and husband Ross Tito.
CINDC New Coordinator
(Source: Mama Tuki, CINDC - Cook Islands, 19th April 2012)
Pat (Farr) is now the coordinator for CINDC. It has been quite a challenge as there's been no coordinator for a while, but she loves the job. Apart from her new job, he continues to do her Home Support work in the community with Te Vaerua, so she is
still very 'hands-on'.
Blind Persons Association Established in Vanuatu
(Source: Nelly Caleb, DPA Vanuatu 18th April 2012)
DPA is proud to announce the establishment of the Blind Persons Association Vanuatu. (BPA Vanuatu is an Affiliate of DPA). This body was established on the 16th April, 2012. Its Committee has made plans to fundraise and get their Association registered. The committee members are as follows;
Office Bearers of Blind Persons Association Vanuatu.
Name Sex Type of Disability Position
Willie Sablan Male Visual Impairment Chair
Sergio Moses Male Low Vision Vice Chair
Noel Robert Male Low Vision Secretary
Alista Douglas Female Low Vision Treasurer
Natalie Sablan Female 50 % Vision Committee
Willie James Male Low Vision Committee
Susan Sam Female Visual Impairment Committee
Enhancing our Voice: Disability Rights Fund Becomes an Independent Public Charity
(Source: Disability Rights Fund – Press Release, 4th April 2012)
BOSTON, MA – As the Disability Rights Fund (DRF) begins its fifth year of grant making, the Fund announces the beginning of operations independent of the Tides Network.
“This month, DRF opens the door to a new level of growth,” stated DRF Co-Chairs. “The organization has rapidly expanded since launch; achievement of independence recognizes the hard work and sophistication of operations accomplished to date.”
DRF was launched as a pooled fund in 2008 under the fiscal sponsorship of Tides. “Launching as a Tides project allowed us to begin grant making straight away,” said Diana Samarasan,
Executive Director of DRF. “In addition to legal status, Tides provided back-office and grants administration support, critical to a start-up fund.” Initiated with four founding donors, in its launch year, DRF made a total of $800,000 in grants to Disabled Persons’ Organizations (DPOs) in seven pilot countries.
Five years later, and with the support of seven donors, DRF has opened grant making to 24 countries around the world and has given out nearly $7 million in advocacy grants to DPOs in 18 countries.
“This growth in support for the rights struggles of persons with disabilities around the world mirrors the rapid ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and enables critical participation of people with disabilities in implementation of their rights,” said Diana Samarasan.
As an independent public charity, the main objective of the Fund remains empowerment of DPOs in the developing world, the Middle East, and Eastern Europe/former Soviet Union to participate in advancement of rights, using the tool of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CPRD). DRF prioritizes grants to the most marginalized populations of persons with disabilities, such as persons with psychosocial disabilities, women with disabilities, youth with disabilities and others.
“DRF’s new public charity status will expand possibilities for innovative additions to this funding,” stated DRF’s Program Officer for Strategic Partnerships, “for example, cross-movement grant making to ensure that disability is mainstreamed into other issue areas.”
As an independent organization, DRF will maintain its unique governance and advisory structure, which incorporates persons with disabilities as decision-makers at all levels of the organization. A new Board will have at least fifty percent persons with disabilities. The Disability Rights Advocacy Fund, a separate organization, will provide grants for ratification and legislative advocacy.
The Fund’s mission and values remain the same. Dedicated donors include the American Jewish World Service, the Australian government’s overseas aid program AusAID, the Open Society Foundations, The Sigrid Rausing Trust, and the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID).
2012 MMAC team profiles: NMPASI
(Source: Raquel C. Bagnol, Marianas Variety Online, 30th March 2012)
NORTHERN Marianas Protection & Advocacy Systems Inc, a non-profit organization designated as agency for protection and advocacy services for individuals with disabilities in the CNMI, is one of the teams that will be participating in the cancer march that will be held on April 27-28 from 6pm to 6am at the Hopwood Junior High School field in Chalan Piao.
Greg Borja, the NMPASI team captain, said the 2012 march will be the first for many of their members, although their former executive director was active in previous years.
Borja said one of their agency’s annual goals is for NMPASI programs to disseminate information relating to the needs and rights of individuals with disabilities to the community at large, including fact sheets and brochures, during events held in collaboration with other organizations.
“MMAC works with a group of people who have disabling conditions, so it was natural to collaborate with them by participating in this event and this is what encouraged us to join,” Borja said.
He said their team is made up of the employees of NMPASI, the board of directors, the Protection & Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness Advisory Council and their families.
During the march, Borja said NMPASI will show some short videos about disability awareness.
“We will also hand out informational brochures, and we have activities that teach teambuilding and problem solving,” he said.
Working together with members of the community is his favorite part of the event.
To those who are still considering forming a team to join the biggest fundraiser of the Commonwealth Cancer Association, Borja has this to say: “We’re still new to this, so I say talk to people who are already involved with the event and jump in feet first. If you don’t have a big team, collaborate with and join with others who are also trying to form a team.”
For more information about NMPASI, call 235-7273/4 or 235-7278, or visit nmpasi.org
Final report for Capacity Development for Efficient and Effective DPO in the Pacific Research
(Source: Katabwena Tawaka – Program Manager PDF 20th April 2012)
The PDF/APIDS research team on the Capacity Development for Efficient and Effective DPO in the Pacific consisting of Mr Setareki Macanawai, CEO of PDF, Mr Katabwena Tawaka, Programme Manager PDF, Ms Deborah Rhodes, Vice President of APIDS and Robyn James, Secretary of APIDS meet in Fiji from the 26-30 March to finalise the final report for the research.
The objectives of the research include:
1. Synthesise relevant existing research and reports on lessons learned from previous capacity development activities in the Pacific context, including with DPOs
2. Provide opportunities for learning and reflection among DPOs about the concepts of capacity, capacity development, effectiveness and efficiency in their own contexts
3. Identify key issues affecting the capacity of DPOs and their capacity development pathways
4. Develop suggested principles and themes relevant to capacity development for DPOs in the Pacific region, based on DPO perspectives, including themes about leadership, organizational governance and administration
5. Identify the range of preferred and appropriate approaches and tools for development partners to contribute to strengthening the capacity, effectiveness and efficiency of Pacific DPOs
The 18 month long research that started in February 2010 was conducted in 12 Pacific Island. The research team hopes to complete the research final report by June 2010 and there are plans to officially launch the research report.
The in country reports can be accessed through the PDF website (www. Pacificdisability.org) and at the APIDS website (www.apids.org) PDF will continue to keep its readers updated on the final launch date of the research.
Research on Disability, Poverty and Livelihood in Fiji
(Soloveni Vitoso – Information Officer, PDF 18th April 2012)
Pacific Disability Forum (PDF), Fiji Disabled Persons Federation (FDPF) and the United Nation Economic and Social Commission for Asia Pacific (UNESCAP) are currently working together in undergoing a ‘Research on disability, poverty and livelihood in Fiji’. The 5 Phase project is currently in Phase 4 of implementation.
The objective of the project is to;
• Empower persons with disability through generating knowledge on their livelihood needs through their own voices
• Build capacity of partner organizations (DPOs) through the project and strengthen relationships between ESCAP, DPOs and persons with disabilities
• Provide governments with analysis on the livelihood needs of persons with disabilities
• Provide comparable data and experiences of persons with disabilities which reflects their lived experience
The research team has already been to the northern part of Viti Levu last month and jut last week were conducting research around the Eastern part of Viti Levu and making its way to the central division. It will also cover the western side of Viti Levu in the coming weeks before collating all data.
This research will be used to influence disability policy and create sustainable livelihoods for persons with disabilities at the national level. The findings of the research and the voices of persons with disabilities would serve as a basis for a report to be launched at the High Level Intergovernmental Meeting on the Final Review of the Implementation of the Asian and Pacific Decade of Disabled Persons, 2003-2012 which would be organized by ESCAP in Incheon, Republic of Korea in October 2012.
Have a lovely weekend.
From the PDF Team