“It is truly an honour and privilege to share my story with key policy makers,” said Greg Silvester. “It is important to educate them about the real and significant social consequences that arise from the stigma around intellectual disabilities. I want to make sure that people with intellectual disabilities are top of mind when critical decisions are made about aid in Africa.”
In many cultures throughout Africa, stereotypes, entrenched stigma and misunderstanding about intellectual disabilities exists and the effects are devastating. Many people with disabilities experience severe social isolation and suffer from neglect, abuse and violence.
Inclusive development is critical for Africa as part of a post 2015 Millennium Development Goals framework, and the United Kingdom continues to serve as one of the most important development partners for African nations. As part of a renewed disability and development approach – and one that focuses on rehabilitation and service provision – DFID stands to make one of the largest and most sustained impact of any foreign aid. More than 200 million people worldwide have an intellectual disability, making this the largest disability group worldwide.
The International Development Committee monitors the policy, administration and spending of the Department for International Development (DFID), and its associated public bodies, and takes an interest in the policies and procedures of the multilateral agencies and non-government organisations to which DFID contributes. The Committee consists of eleven backbench Members of Parliament and is an investigative Committee rather than a legislative Committee. As such, it sets its own programme and chooses subjects for inquiries. For more information visit https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-international-development
About Special Olympics
Special Olympics is an international organization that changes lives through the power of sport by empowering people with intellectual disabilities, promoting acceptance for all, and fostering communities of understanding and respect worldwide. Founded in 1968 by Eunice Kennedy Shriver, the Special Olympics movement has grown from a few hundred athletes to 4.2 million athletes in 170 countries worldwide, providing year-round sports training, athletic competition and related programs. Special Olympics takes place daily, changing the lives of people with intellectual disabilities all over the world. Special Olympics provides people with intellectual disabilities the opportunity to realize their potential, develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, and experience joy and friendship. Visit Special Olympics at www.specialolympics.org. Engage with us on: Twitter @specialolympics; fb.com/specialolympics; youtube.com/specialolympicshq, and specialolympicsblog.wordpress.com