We, the European Disability Forum (EDF), have an active role to play to ensure persons with disabilities and representative organisations of persons with disabilities (DPOs) are included in European Union (EU) development aid. In 2019, we launched our first international cooperation strategy called “EDF in the world: Strategy for international cooperation 2019-2022”.
We hired a consultant company to review the progress on the implementation of our International Cooperation strategy. We also wanted to be provided with learning outcomes and suggested directions for EDF’s future work in this field. The consultants used a participative Strength Based Approach, meaning they analysed existing documents, interviewed key people and conducted two focus groups.
In term of progress regarding the implementation of our International Cooperation strategy, the consultants noted the extraordinarily high commitment of EDF staff, with good results achieved. In terms of learning outcomes, the influence on the EU has largely increased by bringing the overall and combined viewpoints of European DPOs together. We also provide an opportunity for networking with other DPOs in order to achieve decision-making, advocacy and policy influencing, something highly appreciated by project partners. Finally, in terms of suggested direction for our future work, we should become the point of contact and reference to also influence the external action section of the new EU disability strategy. It was suggested to further expand our work to gender, humanitarian aid and climate action (to follow the EU shift) as well deinstitutionalisation and intellectual disability (to engage in the work of our members).
The full results of this assessment were presented at EDF’s board meeting in July 2021.
For more information, contact EDF’s International Cooperation Manager: Marion Steff, firstname.lastname@example.org