“Empowering People to Embrace Disability”

Kanamugire is a passionate social worker and chairperson of Greater Masaka Association of Cerebral Palsy in central Uganda. He provides psychosocial support to parents of children with cerebral palsy and those affected with HIV, and advocates for the rights of people living with disabilities and those who have been sexually abused. 

To raise awareness on community reporting structures and legal procedures, he supports 6 parent groups to understand different types of disability and to overcome stigma. Furthermore, Kanamugire has received training on mental wellbeing and uses his knowledge to help parents, youth and families in his community. 

Aware of the discrimination and trauma faced by those living with disabilities, Kanamugire believes that healing and wellness begins with self-care. Thus, he was pleased to have attended the training and to use its insights to empower his community

Training has helped me engage parents and the community to embrace people living with disabilities. I got knowledge on how to handle mental illness, how to motivate them to engage in community activities,” Kanamugire.  

According to Kanamugire, the lack of support for children living with disabilities is due to certain organisations not taking into account the knowledge and experience of those living with disabilities. “Being inclusive in project planning is crucial because the people living with disabilities know the solutions to challenges,” Kanamugire. 

Kanamugire suggests that regular sensitization is key to establishing positive attitudes around disability and inclusivity which will enable communities to more readily embrace the fostering of children living with disabilities.

The more parents are sensitised, they will champion children staying in their families and cases of children abandonment reduce in communities,” Kanamugire.

Kanamugire recommends that those in charge of institutions should be informed of the significance of kids being with their relatives or guardians.

If the institutions start to sensitise their communities, there will be less children joining the institutions,” Kanamugire.

Kanamgire aspires to be an expert on disability inclusion for children.