Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) joined other countries around the world in observing International Day of Persons With Disabilities on December 3, 2013. One nice outcome from this effort was a video “BiH Without Barriers!” to draw attention to the position of persons with disabilities in BiH and the problems they face daily.
“By observing this day, we strive not only to raise consciousness about the benefits of the inclusion of persons with disabilities in all aspects of political, economic and cultural life, but also their actual, concrete involvement in social processes,” said Muamer Logo, spokesman for the Institute for Youth Development in BiH (KULT).
KULT and more than 20 other NGOs from throughout BiH created the video as part of their participation and learning through USAID’s program “Strengthening the Institutional Capacity of USAID Partners in BiH.”
The BiH Without Barriers! initiative draws attention to the discrimination of persons with disabilities who use wheelchairs or other assistive devices, and are very often unable to enter public buildings due to inadequate infrastructure.
The initiative will include an analysis of the accessibility of the more important public buildings in BiH, which will be mapped through Facebook. The goal of the action is to provide an account of all socially (ir)responsible public institutions, companies, etc.
“NGOs consider it necessary to protect the human rights of persons with disabilities and provide them with equal access and participation in all aspects of society. It is paramount that we fight stereotypes and show the public that persons with disabilities are equally capable to perform everyday activities with equal treatment,” Muamer Logo said.
USAID’s program Strengthening Institutional Capacity of USAID Partners in BiH was implemented by the Institute for Youth Development KULT in fall 2013. The program was a four-part series of trainings to strengthen the institutional capabilities of up to 30 USAID local implementing partners so they can better support their sub-grantee partners: 1) public outreach; 2) fundraising; 3) collaboration; and 4) performance management.
The BiH Without Barriers! video was a joint effort of the following organizations: Institute for Youth Development (KULT), Citizens' Association Nešto Više, Mozaik Foundation, Center for Educational Initiatives Step-by-Step, Association of Election Officials in BiH, CURE Foundation, CRMA Association, INFOHOUSE, Youth Organization Odisej Bratunac, Center for Sustainable Development, CPCD, SUMERO, Democratic Youth Movement, Partner Tuzla, Youth Association Reaktiv Zenica, Friends of Srebrenica, Sarajevo Historical Museum, NGO Altruista Svjetlost, Association of Families and Persons with Developmental Difficulties, Sarajevo Open Center, Helsinki Committee in Republika Srpska, YiHR BiH, Association of Golden Badge recipients of University of Sarajevo and Association Glas Istočno Sarajevo.
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