Helping people with disabilities help themselves
People with disabilities are often stigmatised in Indonesia and excluded from society. The Redel Foundation is supporting the independence and integration of these people.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are around 38 million people with a disability living in Indonesia. Despite this high number, there is very little state support and no commitment to providing assistance. These people are often stigmatised, excluded from society and condemned to a life of poverty. In 2016, the Redel Foundation joined forces with Caritas international to support several subprojects that promote the independence of people with disabilities on the island of Flores.
People with disabilities are not provided with any information about treatment options, preventive measures, educational opportunities or how to secure a living. The majority of people on Flores are Catholic and structures or institutions run by the Catholic church here, such as Caritas or the institutions and care homes run by the nuns, are generally the only places for these people and their families to go. With greater attention now being devoted to developing the skills and potential of people with disability, there needs to be more focus on their rehabilitation and social inclusion. In addition to providing people with disability and the Caritas employees with education and training, this also means raising awareness among the wider population, and in the context of Flores, through the work with and carried out in these parishes and dioceses.
This work is also helping to improve the rehabilitation options available, securing access to these and other medical services for people with disabilities. Access to special needs education and inclusive education is guaranteed in the project region, ultimately facilitating a secure livelihood and financial stability for these people and their families. There is also a strong emphasis on self-help groups, in which the members can better represent their interests. The self-help groups identify earning opportunities, and organise and arrange the necessary information and materials. This could be a ramp for a wheelchair, a walking aid, a computer course or a seminar for family members on how to better support the independence of their disabled relatives.