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Disability in South Asia Region

Map: South Asia Region

Disability and poverty are intricately linked. Disability causes poverty and poverty exacerbates disability – people with disabilities are among the poorest and most vulnerable. Global estimates indicate that at least ten percent of the world’s population lives with some form of disability. In the South Asia Region, a vast number of people are disabled and lack basic support such as access to social safety nets, education, health services, and gainful employment. Little or no data is available – disability issues are given low priority or are excluded from official statistics. Many forms of disability are difficult to capture in statistics, often due to under-reporting. The incidence of disability is increasing due to conflicts, disasters, malnutrition and the HIV/AIDS pandemic.

The societal cost of exclusion is high with long-lasting consequences. Short-term solutions to poverty alleviation and improved socio-economic status, as well as political inertia, continue to hamper long-term progress. A shift in perception of disability is emerging globally, and in the World Bank, Disability and Development is gaining ground as a new area of focus. The traditional view of medical and rehabilitation models - prevention, cure and intervention - is giving way to a social model that looks at disability as a socio-economic construct.

ArrowsVisit also The World Bank and Disability in South Asia Region

Publications and Reports

World Bank

Non-World Bank

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Projects and Initiatives

  • PAKISTAN: PK Earthquake Disability
    [Project ID: P099542 - Project Status: Active]
    The objective of this project is to improve the quality of life of, and reintegrate into society, people with disabilities and their families in the earthquake-affected areas in the short and long term. This objective will be achieved through access to rehabilitation and social welfare services, as well as skills development and inclusion, participation and empowerment...
  • INDIA: Andhra Pradesh Rural Poverty Reduction Project
    [Project ID: P071272 - Project Status: Active]
    The Andhra Pradesh Rural Poverty Reduction Project development objective is to enable the rural poor, particularly the poorest of the poor, in Andhra Pradesh to improve their livelihoods and quality of life. The project supports the Government of Andhra Pradesh's ongoing long-term Rural Poverty Reduction Program, which aims to eradicate poverty; promote human capital development; focus on the welfare of children, particularly girls, women, the old, and the infirm; and build an equitable society...
  • INDIA: Second National Leprosy Elimination Project
    [Project ID: P067543 - Project Status: Closed]
    The objective of the Social Protection Initiatives Project in Egypt, is to develop integrated programs for children with disabilities and youth at risk. The project will further improve management and administrative skills in the Ministry of Insurance and Social Affairs (MISA), as well as, service delivery practices. The project components will include: 1) support services, for children with disabilities and their families. Institutional building activities will include social studies on needs...

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Country Profiles

The Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has developed several country profiles on disability. Within the East Asia and the Pacific Region such studies have been carried out in Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. © JICA holds all copyrights on these profiles and they are provided here in link format only.

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Related Links






Sri Lanka:

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Last updated: 2011-06-22

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