Cyclone Idai struck Mozambique on March 14, killing more than 600 people, injuring more than 1,600, and leaving nearly two million in need of humanitarian assistance. Flash floods and mudslides caused by the storm destroyed 90% of Beira, a coastal city in Mozambique.
Humanity & Inclusion is on the ground, helping survivors. Emergency logistics colleagues are reinforcing capacity and working to open access points to rural areas shut off from humanitarian aid. For example, our team is coordinating debris removal from roads in the Mahavana area, which has received little to no support with clearance since the cyclone. To help minimize the risk of spreading cholera, our team is distributing hygiene kits, which include basic items such as hand and laundry soaps, to 8,000 families.
Humanity & Inclusion has 40 staff in the country, with a growing team in Beira. Our staff members are extremely concerned for the welfare of people–especially those with disabilities, older people, and vulnerable individuals–who have not yet been reached.
Humanity & Inclusion is working to promote the rights and social participation of people with disabilities, support civil society to improve the social inclusion of people with disabilities, and prevent the development of disabilities. Currently, 37 national staff and three expatriate staff work in Mozambique.
Since 1986, Humanity & Inclusion has worked in Mozambique responding to issues resulting from the country’s 25-year long civil war. Since peace agreements were signed in 1992, Mozambique has embarked on a series of political, economic, and administrative reforms. The country is recovering rapidly thanks to economic growth, backed by the international community and private investment. However, the biggest threat to stable growth is the rampant spread of HIV/AIDS, poor sanitary conditions, and a very low standard of education.
Humanity & Inclusion provides quality inclusive education for girls and boys with disabilities in targeted peri-urban areas of Maputo and Matola. Our team will enhance the quality of teaching in inclusive education by conducting a needs assessment of teachers’ skills, attitudes, and practices and by identifying the gaps in the Ministry of Education’s current inclusive education curriculum. The project will then enhance this curriculum by producing additional trial modules on inclusive education, and by providing training and technical support to the teaching staff of the 12 pilot primary schools. We will also set up a peer educators’ system with people with disabilities to foster community engagement to improve parent/schools links and to encourage enrollment and retention of children with disabilities and special learning needs in schools. Furthermore, Humanity & Inclusion will support the development and application of an Inclusive Education National Action Plan.
Humanity & Inclusion improves access to social and health services for people with disabilities in extremely poor peri-urban areas through supporting and training local service providers. The organization also oversees an information, guidance and social support system managed by Disable People's Organizations (DPOs), who also facilitates access to these services.
Humanity & Inclusion's previous work in Mozambique has included:
For nearly ten years, teams of Humanity & Inclusion deminers and specially trained dogs were used to clear landmines. This program ended as the country declared itself mine-free in September 2015. From the start of demining operations in 1998, Humanity & Inclusion was a key mine actor in Mozambique. Over a period of 17 years, the organization demined more than 16 million square meters of land, and neutralized 6,000 anti-personnel mines and 5,000 explosive remnants of war using a demining process combining people, dogs, and machines.
Improving the quality of life for survivors of mine accidents and their families has been a major goal of Humanity & Inclusion . By performing a mine survivor needs assessment and promoting a victim aid plan, Humanity & Inclusion has assisted more than 14 districts throughout the provinces Maputo, Inhambane and Sofala, eight NGOs, and various service providers in reducing the poverty of victims and improving their quality of life. Humanity & Inclusion is currently helping stakeholders craft a national action plan to address the ongoing needs of mine survivors. The organization also conducts training for people with disabilities to help them access social services and effectively seek jobs.
Support for Disabled People's Organizations
Humanity & Inclusion teams have improved the effectiveness of two social support centers by teaching members how to apply for funding and implement specific projects. Teams focused on providing mobility aids and various social services, improving facility accessibility, and raising awareness to develop a more equitable, open-minded society over all. Humanity & Inclusion continues to work with and empower disabled persons organizations in its projects in Mozambique.
Humanity & Inclusion promoted literacy among people with disabilities by creating inclusive adult reading centers and supporting the “literacy for everyone” campaign on the local and national levels. More than 140,000 people and 200 professional educators benefited from these efforts.
Advocacy through the arts
To promote social participation of people with disabilities in Mozambique, Humanity & Inclusion curated an annual, multidisciplinary show (dance, music, theater) with a company including people with disabilities, non-professional and professional artists, from different origins.
On June 24, 2014, a dance and musical show was organized to teach the importance of fully including people with disabilities in society. The audience included delegates from States Parties to the Ottawa Treaty (Mine Ban Treaty) that were attending the Third Review Conference in Maputo.
Watch the 2014 "Inclurate" performance here.
Resilience and Social Protection
Humanity & Inclusion works to strengthen the skills of two information, orientation, and social support centers (SIOAS). These SIOAS identify the most vulnerable people, advise them, give them personalized support and refer the beneficiaries to social and health centers established by the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Welfare, and Disabled People’s Organizations. These SIOAS facilitate access for disabled people to social protection mechanisms. Humanity & Inclusion provides technical support and establishes an acquisition and mobility aids distribution system, to host vulnerable people and to establish other SIOAS in the country.