NGO scales up disability inclusion fight

By Tafadzwa Muranganwa

A local Non-Governmental Organisation has heightened its fight on ensuring PWD(People With Disabilities) are included in all facets of society through various projects in Mashonaland Central province.

The Development Aid from People to People (DAPP) recently engaged media to interface with some of the projects they are spearheading for PWDs in Rushinga district in Mashonaland  Central.

Speaking to the media, Rushinga district development coordinator(formerly DA)   Lorretta Rumbidzai Jonasi hailed DAPP for its role in pushing for disability inclusion especially by engaging youths with disabilities (YWD) .

“I would like to attest that after the coming in of DAPP we have witnessed a lot of improvement among people with disabilities especially among the youths who are now actively participating in political processes for example recently they were able to engage with a parliamentary portfolio committee on women,youths and persons with disabilities,” said Jonasi.

The Rushinga district development coordinator further said that through DAPP’s interventions, the district now boasts of 6 Disabled People’s Organisations(DPOs) and as part of the district’s strategic plan they are now striving to make sure that all their buildings are disability-friendly.

 A beneficiary of the projects, Innocent Kufahakurotwi,17, is elated to be part of the ‘life-changing’ interventions by the NGO.

“I am delighted that DAPP has made great strides in changing our lives as YWD, before it came we were living off donations but now I am a proud owner of goats and we are also doing a thriving poultry project ,” said an excited Kufahakurotwi.

An official with the ministry of primary and secondary education, Mr. Webster Jasi says efforts have been made to ensure schools in the districts are disability-friendly owing to the partnership with DAPP.

“In this district, we now have 17 schools out of 76 schools which are now disability-friendly after infrastructural adjustments like the building of ramps were necessitated with the assistance of DAPP and other development partners,” revealed Mr Jasi.

The DAPP projects in Bindura,Shamva and Rushinga in Mashonaland Central  are being spurred by assistance from  Leonard Cheshire Disability (LCD) and the  European Union

Zimbabwe is among many countries in the world that ratified United Nations Convention on Persons with Disability(UNCRPD) which sets out the fundamental human rights of people with disabilities but has not yet fully implemented it.