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Japan supports the empowerment of people with disabilities

(KPL) VIENTIANE, 30 July 2014 – The Government of Japan has been supporting the empowerment of people with disabilities in the Lao PDR for some time.

On 30 July 2014, a grant contract was signed at the Japanese Embassy between Mr Hiroyuki Kishino, Ambassador of Japan to the Lao PDR, and Ms. Tomiko MAEJIMA, President of the Asian Development with Disabled Persons (ADDP), a Japanese non-profit organization, for a project for vocational and business training of people with disabilities, worth 206,714 US dollars. 

The signing ceremony was witnessed by the embassy officials and ADDP staff.

The project, entitled the “Sustainable Human Development Programme of Vocational Trainers with Disabilities and Promotion of Support by Corporation in the Lao PDR,” will be implemented by ADDP in Vientiane Capital. 

The grant contract signed at this time will fund activities in the first year of this two-year project, which will start in August. This project will help people with disabilities acquire skills through training in such areas as production and repair of wheelchairs, baking cookies, hairdressing, and print designing for business cards, leaflets, etc.

The project aims not only to provide people with disabilities with professional level skills through vocational training, but also to help them start business by applying their own skills.

To that end, seminars will be held to encourage local companies to buy goods and services offered by those disabled people who have received training under the project.

ADDP has been active in the Lao PDR since 1992 in support of people with disabilities. The organization has just completed a three-year project which started in 2011 to empower people with disabilities in the Lao PDR with funding from the Japanese Government, amounting to more than half a million USD. 

Under this project, the total of 145 people with disabilities received training, and more than 80% of them are now doing their own business. 

The grant contract concluded at this time will support the second phase of this project.

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