1. MORIRO MARKAZ
Moriro Markaz – the First Center of Excellence for Disability Inclusion – is an integrated and comprehensive one-stop solution for the independence and empowerment of people with disabilities (PWDs), managed by NOWPDP and funded by the DEPD (Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities) Government of Sindh.
The Story of Moriro:
The story of Moriro’s valor and courage has its roots deep in the region of Sindh. A hero who received homage from none other than the great mystic sufi poet, Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai, in the well renowned Shah Jo Risalo. Moriro was a son of the soil who had a disability that he chose to rise above. Using his knowledge and grit, Moriro avenged the death of his brothers and brought them back from their grave inside the body of a crocodile to lay them at rest in their native village.This story of courage and bravery inspired NOWPDP to name the Center of Excellence for Disability Inclusion as Moriro Markaz depicting the deep-rooted cultural impact of Sindh.
How Moriro Markaz Came Into Being:
NOWPDP has always emphasized the emancipation of persons with disabilities from unwarranted prejudice and pressure from society. As a nascent organization formed in 2008, NOWPDP achieved a number of set goals. However, in 2013, the team realized the lack of special and inclusive education schools in Pakistan and the scarcity of resources available in special education. Through a rigorous needs assessment, Sujawal - one of the poorest districts of Sindh, was identified as an area without any services available for PWDs.
After seeing this colossal gap, NOWPDP proposed the idea of opening the First Centers of Excellence for Disability Inclusion to the Government of Sindh in the Sujawal District. Two years after the formulation of the Department of Empowerment for Persons with Disabilities (DEPD), NOWPDP signed an MoU with DEPD and the foundation of Moriro Markaz was eventually laid. An unoccupied, unused and dilapidated building in central Sujawal was transformed into Moriro Markaz and was launched in December 2020.
What Moriro Markaz’s Logo Entails:
The interpretation of the logo of Moriro Markaz is quite thought-provoking. The bolt conspicuously and creatively shaped like a human is the new icon for disability. It signifies the faculty in PWDs to move forward in their professional lives. The book highlights education and its importance. The corresponding drawings of leaves on both sides highlight the collaboration of Moriro Markaz with the government.
Moriro Markaz has four partners assigned for different types of assistance that NOWPDP deals with.
They are as follows:
- Family Education Services Foundation (FESF) - for the hearing disability
- Ida Rieu Welfare Association - for the visual disability
- Institute of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation (IPM&R) - for rehabilitation
- Special Olympics - for physical education
2. 100 DAYS 100 LIVES
EMPLOYMENT DRIVE FOR PERSON WITH DISABILITIES
100Days100Lives is NOWPDP’s employment campaign to create employment opportunities for 100 people with disabilities in Karachi in 100 days each year. This campaign gives individuals and institutions an opportunity to take up the mantle of disability inclusion by creating jobs and internships, and contribute in making Pakistan an inclusive country.
The global economic turmoil caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has created a financially precarious situation in Pakistan. For people with disabilities, for whom the lack of access and opportunities has been ever present, the situation has become even more critical as 71% of people with disabilities in Pakistan are still unemployed.
What do we need?
We are looking for internship and employment opportunities for 100 persons with disabilities who have either been trained on computer operation skills (Microsoft Excel, Word, PowerPoint) or as call center representatives by NOWPDP.
How can you help?
You can help by simply providing one job opportunity or a one-month internship to our trainees.
- A one-month internship with a transportation stipend.
- Due to Covid-19, we understand that a minimum in-person interaction is advised, which is why you can call the person in for a limited number of hours and a minimum number of days for the internship to be complete.
- The purpose of this internship would be to give people with disabilities a chance to witness a workplace environment and see how working professionals execute their day-to-day tasks in order to achieve their long-term targets.
- The employment opportunity can be a part-time or full-time position.
- The salary requirement is at least minimum wages (PKR 17,500/month).
- Your organization or you will be provided with complete guidance and support by NOWPDP throughout the recruitment process.
3. BASHAMOOL BANKARI
FINANCIAL INCLUSION FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES
With the launch of the policy of State Bank of Pakistan on the financial inclusion of persons with disabilities, NOWPDP also launched Bashamool Bankari. This is an initiative of NOWPDP with the banking sector to ensure the policy is being implemented. Every person with disability has the right to be financially empowered and NOWPDP pledges to further this cause. For the past decade, NOWPDP has been advocating to bring about sustainable change to the regulatory framework for financial inclusion of persons with disabilities (PWDs) in conjunction with the State Bank of Pakistan. We are grateful that our efforts as representatives of PWDs have started bearing fruit through the passage of this historic policy.
Salient Features of the State Bank Policy for Financial Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities:
Center of Excellence for Financial Inclusion (CEFI)
CEFI aims to facilitate the implementation of the State Bank’s Policy for the Financial Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities by addressing the core policy objectives.
Two-Pronged Mandate of CEFI
4. SAHELI PROJECT
Female with disabilities face more discrimination because of their gender. In Pakistan, only around 21.4% (World Bank, 2019) of the female population is able to participate in the workforce. If we separately discuss the statistics around unemployment of PWDs, then in developing countries more than 90% (UN Factsheet on PWDs) of PWDs are out of the workforce. Considering this reality and the fact that including PWDs in the economic activities can bring additional US$11.9bn-15.4bn in Pakistan's economy, NOWPDP has always been eager to engage women with disabilities for its employment related initiatives. Unfortunately, it has been even more difficult for NOWPDP to counsel and convince women with disabilities and their parents to participate in various employment programs, as they have always been reluctant because of many environmental and attitudinal barriers.
In order to cater to these challenges NOWPDP has launched a Saheli project where a few selected women with disabilities will be trained to become community leaders and influencers and will play a major role in devising our female outreach interventions after taking the needs and challenges of WWDs into account. These Sahelis will act as a bridge between the NOWPDP and WWDs in order to engage them for its employment programs. NOWPDP hopes that this inclusive approach will assist women with disabilities in overcoming the societal barriers and challenges and through it WWDs will become financially independent and economically empowered.
The objective of the “Saheli project” is to identify females with disabilities who are community leaders, working professionals and influencers and utilize them to engage other women with disabilities through field outreach, events, activities and sessions. These Sahelis will primarily be responsible to counsel and mentor women with disabilities and their parents and understand their issues and challenges while acting as their focal persons in order to create an environment where women with disabilities feel safe and confident enough to seek employment opportunities and become financially independent and economically empowered.
The Saheli Project is spread over 3 years across 3 cities (Karachi, Sujawal & Islamabad) that will serve as a gateway to decrease the multi-dimensional poverty for women with disabilities in urban and semi urban households within the region of Sindh and Punjab. It is primarily a women economic empowerment project funded by FCDO with British Asian Trust as their implementing partner. NOWPDP is amongst the 6 partners in Pakistan working under the livelihood ambit of this grant.
Through the proposed project, NOWPDP aims to:
- Build capacity of and train 260 women with disabilities in the following demand driven employable trades
- Data Entry/ Computer Operator
- Call Center Training
- Hand Embroidery
- Screen and Block Printing
- Machine Embroidery and Peco
- Graphic Designing/ Web Designing
- Ensure women economic empowerment through job placements of 156 women with disabilities in various partner organizations
- Self-employment of 10 women with disabilities
- Provide facilitation with disability certificates and Special CNICs to 120 women with disabilities