IM has been working in Moldova since 2002, supporting local partners and civil society organizations in the field of inclusion of persons with disabilities. The work focuses on the right to education, the right to economic empowerment and the right to have a voice in the society. Furthermore, IM is working with partners in the area of sustainable and peaceful community development and gender equality.

In Moldova, IM and its’ partners address issues common to most of Eastern Europe; the weak capacity of the civil society and people who are excluded from the society and from demanding access to their rights. To address such issues, civil society organizations must work together, therefore IM fosters a network of partners where natural synergies, such as coalitions and joint activities contribute to a greater society impact.

The focus of the work covers foremost participation and inclusion of persons with disabilities through provision of rehabilitation services, inclusive education, family assistance, vocational support and advocacy activities.

The results and lessons learned in IMs work in Moldova function as a basis for the program in the whole of the Eastern European region. The main lessons concern the need to promote an inclusive community where all people live together and enjoy human rights. Being part of the life of a community is not possible without an active engagement and support of all community members.

Focusing on just the persons with disabilities, their families and the places where they spend most time – for example in schools, is not enough. Also, there should be no “special” places for persons with disabilities, rather all activities in the community should be accessible to all (currently most activities and places are not).

Achieving this requires a massive change of attitudes at all levels – individual, organizational and institutional, and it will take time. However, we really believe that this is the only way to achieve sustainable change for a better and happier lives of everyone.

Participates in job training

Valentina Dimicenco participated in a job training program run by IM’s partner Eco-Razeni. It opened up an opportunity for her to become financially independent, something that is difficult for people with disabilities in Moldova. Photo: Mikhail Calarasan