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In general, disabilities are characteristics of the body, mind, or senses that affect a person’s ability to engage independently in some or all aspects of daily living.  Different kinds of disabilities affect people in different ways yet, the same kind of disability can affect each person differently.  While all disabilities are as different as the individuals who experience them, the challenges and opportunities for persons with disabilities are often similar.  Disability is not inability or in itself a sickness.  People living with disability can and do work, play, learn and enjoy full healthy lives in their communities.


A Disability is a condition at birth or acquired at some time later in life. That may be caused by genetics, accident, trauma, or disease which may limit a person's mobility, hearing, vision, speech or mental function. Some people with disabilities have one or more disabilities.


A Handicap is a physical or attitudinal constraint that is imposed upon a person, regardless of whether that person has a disability. Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary defines handicap as to put at a disadvantage.



People with disability are the largest minority group in the world.  In Africa, they are completely marginalized and isolated from society.  Often times, people with disability resort to begging as their sole means of survival.  Increasingly, factors such as Birth defects; Ageing population; Chronic conditions such Injuries at home, work and on the roads; Violence; HIV/AIDS; Environmental degradation; Malnutrition; and Population growth contribute to the growing number in African who live with disability.

People with disability account for an estimated 10% of the general population. However, they represent 20% of the poor.  80% of working age people with disability are unemployed.  Only about 10% of school age children with disability are enrolled in school and 1% of women with disability in developing countries are literate.

Yet, People with disability are people and only secondarily do they have disabling conditions.People with disabilities are not conditions or diseases. They are people first!