Giving Compass' Take:

 Jackie Marchildon, writing for Global Citizen, explains the difficulties for individuals living with a disability in developing countries and the significant barriers to accessibility. 

• Are there public assistance programs that can help individuals with disabilities? How can global development organizations address some of these issues? 

• Read about how Nigerians with disabilities are becoming powerful activists. 

As the world looks to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030, it’s of utmost importance that we improve access to education, reduce hunger and malnutrition rates, and fight back against gender inequality.

But to truly ensure that “no one gets left behind,” working with the most vulnerable populations is essential — and among those populations are people living with disabilities. The stories of people with disabilities in the developing world are often associated with grim statistics, which underline how far we have to go in the battle to end extreme poverty.

  1. 80% of people living with a disability live in developing countries.An estimated 1 billion people — 15% of the world — live with disabilities, according the World Health Organization (WHO). And 80% of those people live in developing countries.
  2. 90% of children living with a disability in developing countries are not in school.  About 264 million children are out of school today due to barriers like conflict and violence, gender equality and poverty. If a child lives with a disability in the developing country, access to education becomes even less likely.
  3. Women and girls with disabilities are more vulnerable to abuse. In 2004, a study about women and girls with disabilities in Orissa, India, revealed that almost all of them had been beaten at home, 25% of respondents with intellectual disabilities had been raped and 6% had been forcibly sterilized.
  4. Poor people are more likely to have a disability. Disability and poverty are linked. Disability can increase the likelihood of poverty — and poverty can increase the risk of disability.
  5. Only 45 countries in the world have anti-discrimination and other disability-specific laws. Initiatives and laws have been put in place to protect and support people with disabilities in some parts of the world, but that is not the case everywhere.

Read the full article about living with a disability in a developing country by Jackie Marchildon at Global Citizen