Present in Liberia since 2000, Handicap International's first project in the country was to set up a rehabilitation clinic to meet the physical therapy and orthopedic care needs of people with disabilities and the victims of the civil war in Liberia. Handicap International now works to improve the living conditions of vulnerable people (including people with disabilities), especially by facilitating the access of children with disabilities to education. The organization employs seven national staff members and one expatriate.
According to the population census performed in Liberia in 2008, people with disabilities represent 16% of the country’s total population. They are often marginalized and discriminated against, making it hard to access the education system, the job market, and health services. People with disabilities had an even harder time getting their specific needs met during the Ebola epidemic, which hit the country during the spring of 2014, and significantly occupied the country’s health services for years afterward. After a respite that led the WHO to declare Liberia Ebola-free in May 2015, new cases were registered and Ebola remains present in the country until June 2016.
Handicap International works to promote the inclusion of children with disabilities within the existing education system in Liberia. The organization trains teachers in educational techniques adapted to the needs of children with disabilities. Active since 2008, the length of this project has enabled staff at the Ministry of Education to expand their knowledge of the issues surrounding the education of children with disabilities, such as the need for specific teacher training modules adapted to the situation in Liberia and educational assistance from teachers in classrooms.
THESE PROJECTS ARE POSSIBLE THANKS TO HANDICAP INTERNATIONAL DONORS, AND THE FOLLOWING FUNDING BODY: