Now that all six pilot villages in the Nepalese district Sunsari are continuing Inspire2Care or Share&Care independently, it’s time for taking stock. An external research team from Kathmandu therefore executed an extensive Impact Study in these six villages. We hereby mention the most important (preliminary) findings.

The researchers have visited all 257 children with a disability in the villages at home and conducted questionnaires. 8 focus group discussions were held with involved stakeholders, such as parents of children with a disability, health post leaders, chairmen of the Child Clubs and members of the Village Development and Rehabilitation Comminttees. Finally, 25 children were interviewed extensively for case stories.

Less birth defects

The report shows, among other things, that there was a 62% decrease in the number of birth defects and the development of disabilities with children. In numbers, this means that the number of new disabilities with children has decreas from 48 in the five years before the programme (2004-2008) to 18 in the five years during the programme (2009-2013).

More identity cards

The number of children in the possession of an identity card has increased from 11% before Inspire2Care to 78% after the programme. An ID-card is essential because it gives a person with a disability the right for government allowances and access to protection, but also increases his or her participation, acceptation and recognition.

Quality of life

70% of all children with a disability experiences moderate or even significant improvement in the quality of their lives. This corresponds to the intended result. However, we do ask ourselves the critical question: what about the other 30%? Improvement, however small it may be, is always possible. So how can we make sure that also the remaining 30% of the children experience positive change? That is what we continue to work on.

The improvement of the quality of life is partly due to a change in the attitude of people surrounding them. 80% of the children with a disability thinks that the attitude of co-villagers with respect to them has improved. Whereas people earlier call them after their disability, now 98% of the children says that people use friendly words to refer to them or approach them. Also, 93% says that other community members now find it very normal that children and adults with a disability take part in social activities.

Inspired to inspire

Apart from the positive numbers, it is the personal notes in the case stories that might be the most touching. For example, Bageshwor (20) said: “Inspire2Care has given me a second life, and has encouraged me to be an example in society. I want to help other people with a disability and stimulate them in the same way to have a better, dignified life.” That is why we do this work. Keep note of the website of Karuna to read more personal stories from the impact study.

Find the executive summare of the Impact Study in Sunsari here.