Disability Inclusion: Celebrating 20 Years of Progress 

by Alison O'Hanlon
0 comment

Irish charity CBM Ireland is celebrating 20 years of supporting vulnerable people with disabilities across the globe. CBM Ireland, as part of CBM Global Federation, supports work in over 20 countries across Africa, Asia and Latin America.

Dualta Roughneen, CEO of CBM Ireland says “CBM Ireland celebrated its 20-year anniversary on October 26th in the Royal College of Physicians, on Kildare Street Dubin 2.

To mark the occasion, they collaborated with photographer James Crombie to curate an exhibition of his photographs then a discussion with a panel of speakers on the progress of disability rights in Ireland and internationally in the twenty years since our foundation.

James, who is a two-time Irish Press Photographer of the Year, travelled to Kenya to learn more about CBM’s work there and bring home some photographs for our celebration.

The exhibition will highlight the work of CBM Ireland in Kenya, Madagascar and Zimbabwe.

Pictured : Global Director of Advocacy Mary Keogh, Chairperson of the Disability Matters Committee TD Michael Moynihan, Irish ambassador for Down’s Syndrome Ireland Eileen Dunne, Chief Executive Officer of CBM Ireland Dulta Roughneen, Country Director of CBM Global Kenya Edwin Osundwa and Global Chief Executive Officer of CBM David Banbridge

The panel discussion included speakers from the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Disability Matters, the Director General of Irish Aid, a representative of Down Syndrome Ireland as well as our CBM colleagues, including our Country Director in Kenya who has travelled especially for the event.

Although a celebration of 20 years’ since CBM was established in Ireland, the event aims to look outwards, at progress – and challenges – to the achievement of disability rights in Ireland and internationally, in that period. 

Pictured : Bill Nolan former CBM Ireland board member, Michael Gaffey, Director-General, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Ireland, Irish Aid, Dualta Roughneen, CBM Ireland CEO, Mark Finan, CBM Global board member and Eoin McManus, Chairperson CBM Ireland

People with disabilities comprise 16% of global population – about 1.3 billion people worldwide. 80% of them live in the developing world where CBM Ireland works. There is much to celebrate in the progress that has been made on disability rights in Ireland and in international development.

There remain challenges even in Ireland, but there is a yawning gap in the achievements of rights in Ireland compared to the countries CBM Ireland works in. While Ireland is on track to achieve 80% of the Sustainable Development Goals, globally, only 15% of the targets look like they will be reached.

Featured Image: Dualta Roughneen, CEO of CBM Ireland and Photographer James Crombie

Photography: ©INPHO/Tom Maher

Related Articles