A United Nations report says about five million Ghanaians live with disability. There are an estimated one billion disabled people in the world out of the 7 billion we have, i.e. 1 out every 7 people are disabled.
According to the UN Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) are “the World’s Largest Minority”.
The report noted that: “People with disabilities in Ghana are often regarded as unproductive and incapable of contributing in a positive way to society, and rather seen as constituting an economic burden on the family and the society at large, which leaves them in a vicious cycle of poverty.”
“In developing countries there are rarely strong disability movements actively working to improve the living conditions for people living with disabilities. Disabled persons are often only weakly represented in civil society and Ghana is no exception,” the report suggested.
The UN during this year’s International Day for Persons with Disabilities called for the world to “leave no one behind”.
The United Nation indicates that “evidence and experience shows that when barriers to people with disabilities are removed and persons with disabilities are empowered to participate fully in societal life, their entire community benefits. Barriers faced by persons with disabilities are, therefore, a detriment to society as a whole, and accessibility is necessary to achieve progress and development for all.”
There are different types of Specific Learning Disabilities which are manifested in individuals. These include:
Dyslexia: Difficulty in reading, writing and spelling
Irlen Syndrome: has to do with difficulty in how the brain interprets printed material
Dyspraxia Difficulty: in movement and coordination (‘clumsiness’)
Dyscalculia: Difficulty in mathematics
Attention Deficit (Hyperactivity) Disorder: Inability to concentrate well, pay attention and control behaviour.
Autism: Difficulty in relating and communicating with other people