Leaving no-one behind in emergencies - International Day for People with Disabilities

Posted on: Friday, 2nd December, 2016

On the 30th November, as part of International Day for People with Disabilities, CBM ran a workshop for humanitarian agencies to show how people with disabilities can be included in disaster response and to introduce CBM’s vital and innovative new mobile app, Humanitarian Hands on Tool (HHOT), which will help people with disabilities access life-saving relief services during emergencies.

Gordon Rattray, Communications Officer for CBM’s Emergency Response Unit, who presented at the workshop said, “When disasters strike, people with disabilities are often among the worst affected and the last to receive help. With a distinct lack of practical advice on disability in disaster scenarios, and with 1 in 7 indiviappduals living with some form of disability worldwide (80% of these living in developing countries), a large number of people are missing out on life-saving relief services like food, shelter or medical support.”

The Humanitarian Hands on Tool (HHOT) is currently at prototype stage and feedback is being provided both by people with disabilities and by agencies providing emergency relief to ensure that the content is as relevant and full as possible. The final version will be completed in 2017.

Kirsty Smith, Chief Executive of CBM UK who chaired the workshop said, “Although we’ve developed this app specifically with people with disabilities in mind, the good thing about an inclusive approach is that it transforms systems and structures for everybody. We were delighted by the enthusiasm of the participants who attended the workshop.  It is clear that the Humanitarian Hands on Tool will be a useful and valuable resource for those working in the sector to ensure the inclusion of people with disabilities in emergency response. We look forward to working with these organisations as the app progresses.”

The app, developed by CBM and built by Studio 24 provides guidelines which gives practical information to field workers in emergency response scenarios on how to make relief services inclusive.



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