Education of children with moderate to severe disabilities in Cambodia

Concept

A comprehensive approach to fight against the educational and social marginalisation of children suffering from disabilities or vulnerabilities.

Context

More than half the persons with disability in Cambodia are less than 20 years old. Victims of anti-personnel land mines (50% of disabilities), but also poverty, which hampers development and aggravates all disabilities due to the absence of appropriate care, they are most often left to their own devices. In the Cambodian context and for Buddhists, a disability is believed to be the fruit of one’s karma and, therefore, has to be accepted as such. Consequently, only 10% of the country’s children and youth with disabilities receive any education. They account for barely 3% of children enrolled in primary school and 40% are illiterate.

The project

Enabling children with disabilities who are marginalised from school and the community to receive the education to which they have a right and to be integrated in society presupposes fighting on several fronts:

– Acting on mindsets and the lack of motivation of parents and teachers; remedying the lack of skills

– Providing facilities and using adapted pedagogical methods (in particular for hearing and visually impaired children)

– Removing obstacles to schooling, whether financial (poorly paid teachers making parents pay large amounts) or material (school transport for children, etc.).

Implementation

– Home-schooling of children, in integrated or inclusive classes depending on their disability. Adapted equipment and facilities.

– Training of teachers and civil servants in inclusive education.

– Support and education of families in their children’s health care. Help in starting income generating activities.

– Sensitisation and mobilisation of communities about disabilities and their care (information, public events).

Project location / Provinces of Phnom Penh, Pursat, Kep and Kandal, Cambodia
Region / Southeast Asia and China
Area / Inclusive education
Duration / 2012 - 2017
The project covers / 650 children with disabilities in the 6-18 year age group and 780 vulnerable children, 350 teachers.
Project manager / Samphors Vorn
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