The strides made by the CBC Health Services in supporting and promoting inclusive education in Cameroon since 2010 were recognized with an invitation to participate in the 6th Annual African Disability Rights Conference organized by the Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria. The conference took place at St. George Hotel in Pretoria, South Africa from November 5-7, 2018 under the theme “Are we learning together? Addressing barriers to inclusive education in the African region.”
This annual event was focused on addressing the barriers to the implementation of inclusive education in the African region and brought together a diverse range of actors namely: parents, educators, policy makers, funding organizations, students, disability rights activists and development managers working to promote inclusive education in the African continent.
At the conference, the CBC Health Services’ Coordinator of Services for Persons with Disabilities (SPD), Mr. Awa Jacques Chirac, made a presentation titled “A New Model of Inclusive Education in Cameroon” in which he highlighted the challenges currently faced by children with visual impairments despite Cameroon’s ongoing practice of inclusive education. The presentation proposed feasible solutions which constitute the new model for training children with visual impairment in any African education system to foster inclusion.
Quizzed on why the CBC Health Services was selected to participate in the conference, the SPD Coordinator said, “We submitted a paper which was selected based on its merit in addressing current challenges to inclusion in education in the African continent.”
Mr Awa added that unlike other conferences, this one had a unique approach which combined experience sharing with workshop sessions on topical areas of inclusive education. He described the workshops on advocacy and inclusive education and teachers’ training in inclusive education as learning and educative forums during which professionals shared their experiences.
The Services for Persons with Disability (SPD) Coordinator noted that new learning included ways on how to best engage universities to support the inclusion agenda, a lesson which will certainly strengthen the CBC Health Services’ ongoing partnership with the University of Bamenda.
He maintained that as planning for future perspectives on CBC Health Services’ work in inclusive education commences in January of 2019, both the University of Bamenda and CBC Health Services will be looking forward to institutionalizing inclusion.
The CBC Health Services was also represented at the conference by Bridget Longla Fobuzie, Socio-Economic Empowerment for Persons with Disability (SEEPD) Program Education Advisor, Glory Tsangue, Manager of the Empowerment and Disability Inclusive Development (EDID) Program, Jaff Romanus, Mayor of Jakiri Council and Barbara Johnson, an overseas volunteer with the CBC Health Services.