Guyana first National Youths with Disabilities Conference 2022 will engage young people across Guyana on ways to address challenges faced by persons with disabilities across society.
Nearly 100 young persons, ages 18 to 30, from Regions One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six, Seven, Eight and Ten will participate in the first ever National Youths with Disabilities Conference.
This conference, set to become an annual event, will be held on December 1 and 2 at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre.
Ganesh Singh, Programme Coordinator at the Guyana Council of Organisations for Persons with Disabilities (GCOPD) says it is vital to give young people a platform to voice their opinions because they often bring fresh perspectives and novel ideas.
“Over the years we’ve also seen the lack of inclusion of young persons with disabilities in leadership within the various organisations for persons with disabilities and also in general disability advocacy. We have also, over the past two to three years, making a concerted effort to have more young people involved in leadership and advocacy.”
This conference is being hosted by the GCOPD in collaboration with International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) and United States Agency for International Development (USAID) under the Youth ALLIES programme.
Singh says the conference will cover a wide range of topics in areas affecting people with disabilities.
“They will discuss the implementation of the Guyana Persons with Disabilities Act; where we are in terms of implementation of that legislation and what they would like to see in the short, medium and long term as it relates to provision of services for persons with disabilities and fulfilment of the rights of persons with disabilities.”
Some specific focus areas include; access to employment, making systems around voting and electoral systems more accessible to persons with disabilities and general accessibility for persons with disabilities in terms of the physical environment as well as access to information.