An idea that started with three excited friends in a café has evolved into a monumental example of consistency and resilience. Most people have ideas that just remain that, ideas. It takes driven people to turn an idea into reality. Tunaweza foundation is a solid example of a team that is driven and does not stop until the set goal is achieved. An idea, a dream that started with a team of 5 members who were all volunteers is now a place of employment for 8 employees and 5 volunteers which volunteers are all with disabilities. It is now a well-established organization that not only challenges people’s ill perceptions about people with disabilities but also provides opportunities for its beneficiaries considering they mostly end up missing out on transformative ways of life because of missed opportunities.
The foundation set a goal to try and level the ground for women, youth and children with disabilities so that they can have access to opportunities like every other person. They did and are doing this by enrolling financially disadvantaged children with disabilities into good schools, providing the youth with disabilities with entrepreneurial opportunities like trainings in skill development and creating a platform for them to sell their goods. They also have and are intervening in GBV cases involving women with disabilities through counseling and involving law enforcement in dire situations. The bigger picture behind this goal was and is that, the people with disabilities should be part of the contributing and decision-making panels in their country. How can they be part of these panels when they are uneducated? How can they be part of their society and contribute to its development when people look at them as people with inabilities? How can other people look at the disabled with nothing other than pity unless they see what they are capable of?
The foundation has in its works promoted awareness and addressed misconceptions about women, children and youth with disabilities for all that it has approached. It has given people with disabilities long overdue empowerment they needed to realize how much they can accomplish if only they changed their attitudes towards themselves.
AINEMBABAZI SHARON JEAN
Governance and International Relations