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Empowering Change: CCD Hosts Workshop on Disability Mainstreaming in Edo State

Benin City, Nigeria – June 28, 2024 — In a bold move to foster inclusivity and equal opportunities for Persons with Disabilities (PWDs), the Centre for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD) organized a two-day capability-building workshop for civil society organizations (CSOs) and public institutions in Edo State. The event, held on June 27th and 28th, 2024, drew participation from key representatives across various sectors, including ministries, departments, civil society organizations, and the media. The workshop aimed to mainstream disability into programs and policies, reinforcing the importance of inclusive development.

The event opened with a palpable sense of purpose and commitment, setting the tone for two days of intensive discussions and strategic planning. The workshop kicked off with an enlightening session on “Understanding Disability Rights,” led by Florence Attah. Attah’s presentation provided a comprehensive overview of the different disability clusters, legal frameworks, and strategies to enhance inclusion. She underscored the importance of recognizing the diverse needs within the disability community, advocating for tailored approaches to ensure no one is left behind.

Attah’s discussion delved into the intricacies of disability rights, highlighting international and national legal instruments designed to protect PWDs. Participants engaged in vibrant discussions, sharing experiences and brainstorming innovative ways to implement these legal frameworks in their respective domains. The session emphasized the necessity of moving beyond mere compliance, advocating for a proactive stance in promoting disability rights.

Following Attah’s insightful presentation, Mr. Godwin Unumeri took the stage to discuss “Inclusive Workplace and Equal Opportunities.” Unumeri’s session was both inspiring and practical, offering participants actionable strategies to foster inclusive work environments. He highlighted the economic and social benefits of inclusivity, urging organizations to adopt policies that promote equal opportunities for PWDs. Unumeri’s session resonated deeply with attendees, many of whom pledged to implement inclusive practices in their workplaces.

Day two of the workshop maintained the momentum, beginning with a detailed session on “Public Policy Analysis & Engagement,” again led by Mr. Godwin Unumeri. His expertise provided participants with a thorough understanding of the policy development process, equipping them with effective analysis tools to engage in meaningful advocacy. Unumeri stressed the importance of evidence-based advocacy, encouraging participants to leverage data and research to influence public policy.

The highlight of the second day was a session on “Disability-Inclusive Budgeting” by Mr. David Anyaele. Anyaele’s presentation was a powerful call to action, emphasizing the need to overcome attitudinal barriers and ensure stakeholder accountability in budgetary processes. He illustrated how inclusive budgeting can drive social change, fostering an environment where PWDs can thrive. Anyaele’s session was met with enthusiastic responses, with participants acknowledging the critical role of budgeting in promoting disability rights.

The workshop concluded with an engaging session on “Understanding Stakeholders Mapping,” led by Mr. Godwin Unumeri. This session provided participants with valuable insights into the benefits and challenges of building robust partnerships. Unumeri highlighted the importance of identifying and engaging key stakeholders, fostering collaboration to drive inclusive initiatives. Participants left the session with a renewed commitment to advocate for PWDs’ rights and heighten public awareness efforts.

Throughout the workshop, the participants demonstrated a deep commitment to effecting positive change. The interactive sessions facilitated knowledge sharing and collaborative problem-solving, creating a vibrant community of advocates dedicated to mainstreaming disability into their programs and policies. The workshop was a testament to the power of collective action, showcasing the potential of multi-sectoral collaboration in driving social inclusion.

The program is part of the “Promoting Inclusive Economic Opportunities and Community Resilience for PWDs” project, implemented by the Centre for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD) in collaboration with Project Enable Africa. Supported by the US – Alumni Engagement Innovation Fund, this initiative underscores the importance of inclusive development, aiming to create a society where PWDs can enjoy equal opportunities and full participation in all aspects of life.

As the workshop concluded, participants committed to taking concrete steps towards mainstreaming disability in their respective organizations. The discussions over the two days highlighted the urgent need for continued advocacy and action, inspiring hope for a more inclusive future. The Centre for Citizens with Disabilities, alongside its partners, remains steadfast in its mission to promote the rights and well-being of PWDs, championing a society where everyone is valued and empowered.

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