Last week, the CESD staff participated in a disability awareness training organised by the ICCO Regional Office South East Asia and The Leprosy Mission Myanmar. The training assisted the CESD’s researchers to better include people with disabilities from a research and policy perspective which will support the CESD’s mandate of bringing socio-economic reforms that benefit all communities in Myanmar.

The training was an appropriate run up towards The United Nations’ International Day of Persons with Disabilities (December 3rd), which aims to focus on issues that affect people with disabilities worldwide and increase awareness about these communities.


The term disability can be more encompassing than imagined: A disability is a condition or function judged to be significantly impaired relative to the usual standard of an individual of their group. The term is often used to refer to individual functioning, including physical impairment, sensory impairment, cognitive impairment, intellectual impairment, mental illness, and various types of chronic disease.

Globally, approximately 15% of people live with a disability. In Myanmar, 4.6% of the population (2,301,250 people) report having a disability. It was also observed that there is a likely chance that atleast 1 household out of every 12 could have a family member with disability in Myanmar.

The training gave different perspectives towards the term “disability” and provided ideas to our research and overall organisation on how best to make our research and workplace more inclusive and disability-friendly.

CESD is currently implementing a project with the ICCO that also focuses on inclusion of people with disabilities through the Civic Engagement Alliance (CEA) with the intention of empowerment of farmers in the beans and pulses sector across Myanmar.