Ugandan-Canadian partnership advances research on disability studies

June 21, 2016
Karen D. Schwartz, Youn-Young Park, and Ssanyu Rebecca
Raised latrine with accessible ramp

Sustainable Sanitation

In Uganda, statistics show that 20% of the country’s population has some form of physical disability. Despite these numbers, little research has been conducted to provide a window into the lives of people with disabilities. Without formal research and concrete data, a knowledge gap exists that hinders disabled peoples’ organizations in Uganda from effectively advocating on behalf of and providing the appropriate services and supports. To address this issue, the National Union of Women with Disabilities of Uganda (NUWODU) partnered with the Canadian Centre on Disability Studies. Among their objectives were to build up NUWODU’s research capacity and to generate a baseline of qualitative data on the experiences of disabled women and girls in two districts of Uganda. Six women with disabilities were selected for formal training in interviewing techniques and qualitative analysis. Their work generated a baseline of qualitative research data and determined six key areas for further study and advocacy. In addition, two training manuals on qualitative research methodology, data analysis, and ethical research practices were produced. The research sets a framework to scale up the project to other Ugandan districts and for further advocacy by and on behalf of people with disabilities.

Read the Partnership for Women with Disabilities report.

Photo: Flickr/Sustainable Sanitation
An attempt was made to make a latrine accessible. However, the ramp's steepness and the step up at the bottom make it difficult to use.​​