The overall goal of the Atlas Alliance's inclusion work is that people with disabilities are equated in all Norwegian development aid and humanitarian work.
It is a great conundrum that Norwegian development policy and development aid are not inclusive. Despite the agreement that the UN Sustainability Development Goals are made for no one to be left out, this happens to the highest degree in both Norwegian and international aid. We in the Atlas Alliance are aiming for Norway to become an international leader in inclusive development, (Quote Morten Eriksen, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Atlas Alliance, during Arendalsuka 2021.)
The Atlas Alliance works to ensure that Norwegian development aid is fully inclusive and that the human rights of people with disabilities are equated in all this work. To achieve this, the Atlas Alliance offers inclusion courses (both digital and physical), network meetings, and other ways that support Norwegian civil society organizations and humanitarian representatives. This work is coordinated by the Atlas Alliance's secretariat, and the Norwegian Atlas organizations, and their local partners, contribute with course leaders and other expertise.
Inclusion in the global south
There are about 1 billion people with disabilities in the world today. A large majority of them, approximately 80%, live in the global south. Most face barriers and disturbances to full participation and equality. This can be in the form of negative attitude, lack of accessibility, and structural barriers. These barriers prevent participation and equality in society. The Atlas Alliance works to ensure that people with disabilities have access to educational opportunities, health services, development opportunities and leisure activities on the one side, and that they engage in local communities, political participation and sociocultural involvement on the other.
Norwegian organizations want to contribute
Equality and inclusion of people with disabilities is a goal in itself. A report ordered by the Atlas Alliance, and conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in 2021, shows that Norwegian organizations have the necessary understanding regarding the importance of equality and inclusion of people with disabilities in the organizations' work, but that many wish to further improve how this can be done.
Training in inclusive aid
The Atlas Alliance offers a broad portfolio of services. We offer inclusion courses, network meetings and technical assistance, and we facilitate the building of inclusion competence among Norwegian civil society organizations and humanitarian representatives.
Our four module courses:
- Introductory course / general course about what inclusion of the disabled in development aid work, and how projects can be arranged and implemented so that people with disabilities are included in the entire project cycle.
- Thematic courses on inclusive education, inclusion in crisis and conflict, work and income, and inclusive health.
- Crosswise thematic courses on topics such as intersectionality, with a certain focus on girls and women with disabilities. In addition, we focus on topics such as indigenous peoples with disabilities, and the effect of climate change and ecological disasters on the lives of people with disabilities.
- Workshops on how to fight stigma, prejudice and ableism (discrimination of the disabled).
Reach out to our project leader for the inclusion project, Gagan Chhabra, should you have any questions or if you and your organization wish to contribute to a more inclusive world-