Zero Project 2018/19
Empowerment Through Integration (ETI) is a non-profit organization committed to developing a more inclusive society and breaking the cycle of disempowerment of people with disabilities (PWDs) by focusing primarily and intensively on capacity building and mindset transformation. Society’s misconceptions about PWDs and lack of appropriate knowledge and skills that promote empowerment and inclusion not only negatively affect PWDs’ quality of life but also negatively impact society as a whole. ETI implements virtual and hybrid specialized life skills training with families and youth with visual impairments as well as specialized inclusive education training for educators, such as inclusive STEM, among others. As of 2020, ETI’s programs have been implemented in Lebanon for the past 10 years and, in 2021, ETI will launch new specialized eLearning programs with families of youth with visual impairments and professionals in Lebanon and in Ghana.
The ETI specialized inclusion and life skills program is remarkably unique regarding its approach, target audience, and core content. In this regard, this program is a necessary and much needed resource that not only goes beyond the commonly used human rights-based approach that has historically guided efforts associated with inclusion of PWDs, but also highlights an innovation value-based perspective combined with a value-based approach towards empowerment and inclusion of youth with disabilities. Furthermore, unlike most online training materials that only target beneficiaries with disabilities and their families, ETI’s online training component takes the next step and aims to equip members of the community at large with the necessary knowledge and skills to take responsibility for unleashing the community’s full potential via the empowerment and inclusion of youth with visual impairments. It is important to note that ETI’s training responds to a growing demand of inclusion and diversity training around the world while also directly addressing the complete absence of online (and in person) resources that aim to empower communities in multiple countries to take responsibility for the inclusion of all their members as a value for their respective communities.
ETI supported 1000+ youth with disabilities and their families through year-long programs.
ETI also empowered 5,000+ individuals through intensive workshops
ETI’s programs all operate on the principle of human-centered design. If our goal is to empower people to realize bias—and to recognize how it imposes limitations on everyone—we have to put the beneficiary at the center of our work. ETI‘s specialized hybrid life skills & inclusion program aims to address the issues informed above via capacity building of families and professionals from underserved communities associated with knowledge and skills needed to promote transformation of mindsets towards authentic inclusion. The ultimate goal of ETI’s specialized training is to instill in individuals the understanding that we are all responsible for contributing to the development of a sustainable, empowered and inclusive society and that this responsibility is based on the recognition that all humans are valuable to society.
• Local partners for the recruitment of families with blind youth and professionals to participate in ETI’s eLearning;
• Local sponsorship to cover costs associated with families’ participation in ETI’s specialized eLearning.
ETI does not charge families of youth with visual impairments for its eLearning program and, instead, relies on partnerships with local entities, other non-profit organizations, UN entities, private donations, and grants. ETI’s replication plan is based on the TOT approach and focuses on sustainable inclusion. In this case, professionals of local communities are trained on ETI’s specialized eLearning and act as co-instructors during the training of families of youth with visual impairments in their respective locations during the implementation of ETI’s eLearning. Upon completion of ETI’s eLearning program, local trainers are equipped to continue working with families and youth in the region and continue to support the development of their independent life skills. ETI’s virtual training supports the replication of this program to multiple locations around the globe and direct engagement and empowerment of local partners for sustainable inclusion.
Contact person: Anna Barbosa, firstname.lastname@example.org