7 ways you can transform lives in 2021

Group of elderly patients smiling after successful cataract surgery at a mobile surgical camp in Nepal, supported by CBM.
Author:CBM UK
Posted on: Tuesday, 26th January, 2021

There are so many ways you can support people living with disabilities, and their families, in the world’s poorest communities this year – keeping reading to find out more!

1. Saving sight

Every day, women, men and children in poor communities go blind because of eye health conditions that could have been easily treated or prevented.

With your support and generous donations we can:

  • Treat blinding diseases like river blindness and trachoma. Medicines to treat these diseases can cost as little as 16p.
  • Enable adults and children to access sight-restoring cataract surgery, including through outreach camps in remote places far from the nearest eye hospital.
  • Train specialist doctors, nurses and other health workers to identify and treat eye conditions, and equipping hospital eye departments.
  • Support screening programmes that find people who need help and enable them to access treatment.
  • Support Governments in countries where we work to improve eye health services for the long-term.
  • Provide glasses and low vision devices to people who are visually impaired.

Find out more.

2. Building livelihoods

People with disabilities in poor communities often find it difficult to earn a living because they can’t access education or training, face prejudice and discrimination or cannot access resources or loans to get started.

With your support and generous donations we can:

  • Offer training in vocational and life skills.
  • Help people with disabilities to build their confidence and see themselves as active members of their communities, through one-to-one support from trained outreach workers.
  • Provide start-up resources to help people set up businesses, such as small loans or equipment like a sewing machine or computer.

Find out more about saving sight.

3. Providing education for all

Education opens doors and creates opportunities, but girls and boys with disabilities are more likely to miss out on school than any other group. 9 out of 10 children with disabilities in Africa do not go to school.

With your support and generous donations we can:

  • Train teachers to meet the needs of disabled students.
  • Equip schools with the right resources.
  • Provide support at school to children with disabilities.
  • Help parents into employment so they can afford to keep their children at school.
  • Work to change attitudes, showing that people with disabilities can participate in all aspects of life, including going to school.

Find out more about inclusive education.

4. Delivering emergency response

When disasters strike, people with disabilities are often among the worst affected and the last to receive help. They may miss out on warnings or information because they can’t see, hear or understand them. They may be unable to escape quickly from danger. And vital emergency aid like shelters or food distribution may be too far away, or difficult to access for a person with a disability.

With your support and generous donations we can:

  • Identify people with disabilities who have been affected and meet their immediate needs of food, water, shelter and healthcare.
  • Support local partners and Governments to plan and develop long-term programmes to help rebuild lives and communities into the future.
  • Work with communities and disabled people’s organisations to help ensure that people with disabilities are involved in planning an inclusive response if disasters strike.

Find out more about humanitarian work.

5. Improving health

People living in poor countries are more likely to be disabled than those in wealthy parts of the world, often due to lack of access to healthcare. One of the main reasons is they are at much greater risk of diseases or conditions that can cause disability.

With your support and generous donations we can:

  • Treat diseases, conditions or injuries that could lead to disability.
  • Train specialist doctors, nurses and healthcare workers.
  • Provide rehabilitation and physiotherapy.
  • Help to equip hospitals and improve healthcare systems.
  • Provide assistive devices such as wheelchairs, crutches or hearing aids.

Find out more about improving health.

6. Promoting disability inclusion & rights

In many countries where CBM works, people with disabilities face stigma and discrimination. They are often excluded from communities, denied their rights and opportunities to fulfil their potential.

With your support and generous donations we can:

  • Train and support people with disabilities and their families to speak out for and claim their rights.
  • Support self-help groups and disabled people’s organisations to provide peer support and give people with disabilities a stronger voice.
  • Influence Governments and decision makers through policy and advocacy work, encouraging them to recognise the rights of people with disabilities and the valuable contribution they can make.

Find out more about promoting disability inclusion and rights.

7. Improving support for mental health

Mental health conditions are a leading cause of disability and ill-health worldwide. 80% of people with mental illness live in developing countries. Most have no access to treatment or support and many face extreme poverty, stigma, discrimination and abuse.

With your support and generous donations we can:

  • Provide vital support to people experiencing mental health conditions and their families, for example through setting up peer-support groups.
  • Improve access to community-based treatment by training health and community workers to identify and understand mental health conditions.
  • Support people with psychosocial disabilities (those caused by mental health conditions) and their families to earn a living, for example through vocational training and support to set up small businesses.
  • Tackle stigma and discrimination, including by training and supporting people with lived experience of mental health conditions to share their stories and promote understanding in their communities.
  • Improve access to counselling and psychological support at times of humanitarian crisis.
  • Use our expertise and understanding to train and support other organisations to address mental health and include people with psychosocial disabilities in development and humanitarian work.

Find out more about mental health support.

Together we can continue to transform lives in the world’s poorest communities in 2021 and build a fairer world where everyone can achieve their full potential. Donate now.

Thank you for your support.

Image: Group of elderly patients smiling after successful cataract surgery at a mobile surgical camp in Nepal, supported by CBM.


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