In partnership with the National Coordinating Committee on Disability (NCCD), the Ministry of Home Affairs (MOHA), and local people with disabilities, VNAH has been working with the provinces of Ninh Binh and Quang Nam toward the development of provincial and district level Disabled Persons Organizations (DPOs). DPOs enable persons with disabilities (PWDs) to have greater opportunity to participate in the planning and implementation of programs and policies that impact their lives, and they play a crucial role in advancing the rights of PWDs. For example, fourteen PWD leaders recently participated in a workshop with the National Disability Law drafting team where there was dynamic and active discussion about important issues that needed to be included in the law.
The process of assisting PWDs in the establishment and approval of DPOs has included training in advocacy, management, and leadership. As a result of VNAH’s efforts on this USAID-funded initiative, the Ninh Binh Provincial DPO was established and held its first meeting this past December announcing the provincial government’s decision to approve the organization, as well as the DPO’s plan for future activities.
In Quang Nam province, VNAH took the approach of collaborating with disability community leaders in five districts of the province. Thus far, two district DPOs have been officially approved and three others have submitted their applications and are awaiting word from the district authorities. These five DPOs will form a core group and are expected to begin efforts to establish a provincial level DPO within the next several months, in accordance with the objectives of the USAID-funded initiative.