5 disability, women’s right organisation get GH¢ 1m to build capacity

Ghana Somubi Dwumadie (GSD), a four-year disability programme with focus on mental health, has awarded a one million Ghana cedis grant to five disability and women’s rights organisation in the country.

The “Sustainability and Legacy” grant is to strengthen the capacity of these organisations to bring about positive change in the lives of people with disability or mental health conditions, particularly, women.

The beneficiaries include the Ghana Blind Union (GBU), Ghana National Association of the Deaf (GAND), Duapa Mothers Union and the Women with Disability Development and Advocacy Organisation.

The Ghana Federation of Disability Organisations (GFD), would serve as the main coordinating partner on the project, expected to last for 12 months.

Team Leader of the Ghana Somubi Dwumadie, Lyla Adwan-Kamara who made the announcement at a news conference in Accra yesterday, said the grant was the third round of funding support under the programme’s focus area.

“Building on lessons of the previous two grants; the COVID-19 Psychosocial Resilience and Evidence and Effectiveness grants, this, is in line with Ghanaian calls for a better disability inclusion and greater investment into mental health,” she said.

Ms Adwan-Kamara, added that through strengthening institutional and technical capacity of disabled people’s organisations and women rights organisations, “we hope to enable them employ user-led approaches to advocate for their rights and improve the wellbeing of people with disabilities and mental health conditions especially women.”

According to the Team Leader,women having disability or suffering mental illness often faced harsher maltreatment from the public which was why this grant round was focused on them.

“Issues of stigma, discrimination among others are significant barriers that prevent women with disabilities from accessing services and support in society at all levels and we hope that through this grant we help to change the narrative,” she stated.

In a keynote address, Madam Margaret Jackson, Chief Executive Officer of Rainbow Consult lauded the Ghana Somubie Dwumadie for its continuous support to empowering people with disabilities and mental health conditions.

In her view, the new grant round was crucial to enabling disability groups to mobilise their collective power in advocating for social inclusion.

“It is always more important for us to amplify the voices and experiences of those with disabilities rather than presume knowledge.

That is why it is so important that instead of prescribing ready-made solutions, interventions like GSD’s current grant are supported to enable those who have actual lived experience push their own case for inclusion,” she said.

Speaking on behalf of the grantees, the president of Women with Disability Development and Advocacy Organisation, Veronica Kofiedu, said the grant was timely to support the disability fraternity in view of the impact of COVID-19 and the present economic hardship.

She assured that the funds would be used for the intended purpose adding that, “we shall foster a community of practice as grantees to learn and share ideas to better implement our various projects to the benefit of people with disabilities including mental health conditions.”


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