April 2006 Lancering af projekt for handicappede børns rettigheder

Mission East’s Managing Director, Dr Kim Hartzner, returned last week from a trip to Armenia. While there he participated in a press conference to mark the official launch of a new project supporting the rights of disabled children in Armenia.
Local interest was high - 6 Armenian TV companies and 12 journalists from national newspaper agencies and radio companies attended the launch. Furthermore, representatives from 3 Ministries (Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education and Science and Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs) attended and expressed their gratitude to Mission East, our partners and Danida for the past and current activities in Armenia. Other development agencies, including UNICEF, UNDP, WHO and USAID also participated in the launch of the project.

The project is funded by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs(Danida) and aims to improve both social attitudes and healthcare practice for disabled children in Armenia. The project is designed and carried out by a collaboration of Mission East and 3 local partner organizations- Nairi, Bridge of Hope and Arabkir. It responds to the discrimination against disabled children in Armenia and the corresponding poor provision for them, which keeps them from reaching their potential. Many disabled children are still kept at home and remain ‘hidden’ from the world, without the opportunity for development, education and activities with other children.

The new project is working to change that and help disabled children take their place in Armenian society.

Kim Hartzner’s speech at the conference was warmly welcomed: "I hope the work of Mission East and our partners in Armenia will lead to disabled children gaining the same rights as other children. There is a need for these children to be treated with dignity and respect."

April 2006