Building advocacy skills for improved inclusion

Three people are in a living room. The screen of  a video camera is in the corner of the image. A dark haired man leans against a pale wall he is talking to a woman sitting on a couch. A second woman sits on the titled floor. The women wear headscarfs

Effective advocacy is critical to organisations of persons with disabilities (OPDs) in driving meaningful change and advancing the rights and well-being of their constituents. However, OPDs are not always in a position to effectively generate and communicate evidence to support their work.

The Nossal Institute for Global Health, has been granted an Australia Awards Fellowship to work with Fellows from four Indonesian OPDs to develop digital stories for  evidence‑informed advocacy. These are the Centre for Advocacy for Women and Children with Disability, SAPDA; Inclusive Youth Indonesia, PII; Bawayang (BWY) an affiliate of the Indonesian Association for the Welfare of the Deaf; and the Healthy Disability Association of Sukoharjo, SEHATI. These organisations work to empower people with disabilities and ensure equitable access to services and participation in social and economic life. This Australia Awards Fellowship will foster collaboration and contribute to strengthening the impact of messaging by participating OPDs.

The Australia Awards Fellowships helps realise the rights of people with disabilities and builds towards the 2030 Agenda commitments to leave no one behind. This can only be achieved through collaboration, and in that spirit, we are very much looking forward to exchanging ideas, strengthening our partnerships, and co-developing impactful stories.

Dr Alex Robinson, Nossal Institute, Disability, Inclusion and Rehabilitation

The Fellows will build capability in communicating advocacy messages and will engage in practical experience, collecting evidence in ‘real life’ scenarios. Through the use of media production and editing techniques, these storytelling-based approaches will provide opportunities to support programs of disability advocacy and communicate real impact and change.

We are excited to have the opportunity to learn new skills to engage policymakers, government agencies, and other stakeholders. We hope sharing our evidence-based stories will influence legislation, policies, and programs that directly impact the lives of individuals with disabilities.

Ms Nurul Saadah Andriani, Director, Sentra Advokasi Perempuan, Difabel Dan Anak (SAPDA)

The program will be delivered in Melbourne in October followed by remote mentoring from Nossal staff, enabling OPDs to deliver improved advocacy products can create a lasting impact on their community.

Funded by the Australian Government, the Australia Awards Fellowships will work with eligible developing countries to build capacity and strengthen partnerships between Australian organisations and partner organisations to to advance development outcomes in priority areas and increase the institutional capacity of partner countries through their leadership.

Dr Kate Neely is a Senior Technical Advisor at the Nossal Institute. She is passionate about ensuring the voices of people experiencing vulnerability are highlighted within development. Kate is a strong advocate for equity and inclusion.

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Dr Kate Neely