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Inclusion of persons with disabilities

A performance of Epic arts, a dance troupe of people with disabilities

Going by the latest estimates, about 15% of humanity, one billion people worldwide, live with some kind of disability – around 80% of them in developing countries. This explains why persons with disabilities are often called the “biggest minority on the planet”.

Persons with disabilities often do not enjoy equal access to schools and higher education institutions, employment opportunities, or health and welfare systems. Many of them are subject to stigma and discrimination in their own communities and cannot realise their right to full and equal participation in society. Disability is also a development challenge: As a result of exclusion from the labour market and higher costs of living, persons with disabilities are more likely to be poor than those without.

To address this challenge German development cooperation follows a twin-track approach:

  • It supports projects specifically designed for people with disabilities.
  • It aims to ensure that all mainstream projects also consider the concerns of persons with disabilities.

By ratifying the new UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, Germany has made a firm commitment to inclusive development cooperation.

Selected readings on Healthy DEvelopments


Links to other German Development Cooperation resources


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