Two Hopeful Programs in Nepal


From May 14 - 23, 2014 I will be traveling through Nepal providing technical assistance to the tourism industry on accommodating travelers with disabilities.  I have been researching on the current situation for PwD there.

Here is a disability rights campaign implemented by National Federation of Disabled Nepal - NFDN in partnership with Handicap International and UNICEF.


Another positive program in Nepal is the English Access Micro-Scholarship Program.

From May 14 - 23, 2014 I will be traveling through Nepal providing technical assistance to the tourism industry on accommodating travelers with disabilities. This video is courtesy of the National Federation of Disabled Nepal - NFDN, the Government of Nepal, the Disability Working Group of Association of INGOs in Nepal and UNICEF. Focusing on physical accessibility it was produced for the Career Expo for People with Disabilities in Nepal, December 2013.


From May 14 - 23, 2014 I will be traveling through Nepal providing technical assistance to the tourism industry on accommodating travelers with disabilities. This post looks at living with a disability in Nepal.

Nepali disability advocate Nirmala Gyawali speaks from inside her culture on attitudes toward disability.

Nirmala speaks on the simple act of crossing the street in this video.


This video, "Challenging the Cultural Stigma of Disability in Nepal"  documents projects done with Nepali disability activists by Robert Rose of Seattle.


There are many people who find that fishing is more than just a hobby. It is a way of relaxing and enjoying what life is all about. The feeling of being outdoors is nothing short of perfect and should be enjoyed by everyone.  It has been proven that fishing increases attention span, offers social inclusion, a sense of achievement & motor skills development. 

There are some wonderful global fishing destinations and the Caribbean is a favourite.  Aruba, Bahamas, Dominican Republic, St. Lucia, Bermuda  and Barbados all have the perfect setting for fishing itineraries.  Barbados, however, is the island taking the lead with it's "Fully Accessible Barbados" initiative. "Fishing is a fact of life" in Barbados so what better time to introduce "adaptive fishing" than now.  

Here are some options which support the fact that fishing can, indeed, be enjoyed by everyone:

Blind Fishing:  Lawrence Euteneier

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For those who are blind or have vision impairment, meet Lawrence Euteneier, - a gentleman who has been registered as blind since the age of 8 years old.  Lawrence   specializes in arranging guided fishing adventures for persons with limited or no sight.
Lawrence says blind fishing is all about "feeling the bite".    He has spent his life researching and trialing gear and techniques proven effective for fishers with vision disabilities.  His guides are trained in sighted-guide techniques and blind etiquette.  Adventures can be arranged from one day to two weeks in length and can include equipment rental, sighted guide assistance, transportation, meals and accommodation.

Wheelchair Users: Larry Cooper

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For those who are wheelchair users, here's a different kind of fishing experience -  nothing stood in Larry Cooper's way after he was paralyzed  in a car accident in 1992
Six years later, after designing a wheelchair-accessible boat (Sport fisher) and adaptive fishing equipment,  Larry was back fishing on the Sea of Cortez in Mexico.  

Larry also saw an opportunity to provide others with disabilities the chance to enjoy fishing.   Whether it is the excitement of big game fishing, twilight/night fishing for Grouper, Pargo, & Swordfish, diving with the seals or exploring the National Marine Sanctuary after a day of fishing, Larry can provide it all.  As well, Larry can also top off an excellent vacation by providing a wheelchair accessible condo Villa Tranquilllo  and a wheelchair accessible rental van. 

Jim Hargaden

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Jim Hargaden founded Armchair Anglers,  a non-profit organization enabling persons with disabilities to participate in light tackle angling in South Florida.   Jim is building a custom, fully accessible fibreglass catamaran and his primary goals are to provide safe and comfortable day fishing; education in smart "catch & release" techniques promoting conservation of valuable resources and assist  other programs in providing  adaptive fishing opportunities across the country 

Terry Moseley

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In the UK, 54,000 disabled people hold a fishing license, of whom 1,000 fish competitively and the majority for pleasure. One such disability fishing group, The British Disabled Angling Association (BDAA), was founded in 1996 by Terry Moseley to help develop opportunities for people with disabilities to access the activity of fishing in the UK. The BDAA  works with its partner organizations to develop new and exciting opportunities in angling participation, from grass roots to competition levels.

Deaf Fishing

People who are deaf and who like to fish have started clubs all over the world so they can socialize, plan fishing trips, share experiences and teach others their sport. 

The National Bass Association of the Deaf  has affiliations all over the United States.  As well, there is the Ontario Fishing Club of the Deaf in Canada,   the Brisbane Deaf Angler's Club in Australia  and the   Portsmouth Deaf Sea Angling Club in the United Kingdom. 

Having brought awareness of the possibilities and opportunities for persons with disabilities to enjoy fishing, Barbados might want to take note of the potential in creating  programs/itineraries such as these offered by Jim Hargaden,  Larry Cooper,  Terry Moseley and  Lawrence Euteneier,

The warm waters off the coast of Barbados offer ideal fishing for Barracuda, Tuna, Wahoo, Dolphin (Dorado), and the Marlin species. Spin fishing from the many beaches and inshore fishing from open boats is a popular pastime for Barbadians   With this in mind, it would make sense to offer itineraries to accommodate the significant disabled Barbadian population as well as attract disabled fishing fans globally with the lure of appealing, adaptive fishing packages and tournaments.   


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"Sailing for everyone regardless of ability"

There is no more straightforward way to present the "Sailing for Everyone" philosophy emanating from Victoria's Dockland Yacht Club than to give it to you verbatim below.

It has taken root in China Ai Hung Hai (I Love Sailing) on one side of the globe and France's La Voile Ensemble (Sailing for Everyone) on the other. 

"Sailability Victoria - Sailing for Everyone" grew out of the need to the re-think entry level sailing, to simplify everything, to return to the basics. In today's world of seemingly unlimited choice, we have to encourage people into a new activity, not threaten them with confusing rules and jargon and reward them with a dunking.

The philosophy of "Sailing for Everyone" has found expression in an organisation known as "Sailability" which itself began as sailing for the disabled, then grew into facilitating sailing for people with disabilities, and finally blossomed into sailing for everyone, regardless of ability.

We have now amalgamated with Sailability for a cohesive front to promote sailing for everyone, including the disabled, worldwide.

Access Sailing Incorporated

Access Sailing Club Inc is a member of the Victorian Disabled Sports Advisory Committee and the charity of the Victorian Boating Industry Association's melbourne Boat Show. As an incorporated entity it facilitates its branches to own their own property, primarily sailing dinghies and safety craft purchased through sponsorships from local businesses and service clubs, and maintains the organisation's insurance policies. Currently we have branches at Docklands, Bennala, Ballarat, Warnambool and Portland with more evolving all the time.

Club established at Docklands, Melbourne merging with the Docklands Yacht Club.

For any feedback or requests, please e-mail Web Manager, Colin Johanson.


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Walk a mile or two in the shoes of Jeff and you will be opened to world of touch and sound that is rich and literally "overlooked" by those who are profoundly sighted. 

This video by Accessible Media sneaks in a powerful message of inclusion in this video "Jeff's Day."

What would it be like if a cruise line created a set of videos with this quality of environmental description for each of its ports-of-call? How about if someone started by doing a proof of concept video in Barbados?

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The ENAT Code of Good Conduct

ENAT Code of Good Conduct labelThe international commitment label for accessible tourism providers

Read the ENAT Code of Good Conduct

Go to Sign-up page ( - for ENAT Members only)

Go to ENAT Code of Good Conduct Background Information

What is the ENAT Code of Good Conduct?

  • Launched in October 2009, the ENAT Code of Good Conduct is a commitment label and certification scheme for tourism businesses and organisations, recognising their efforts to promote accessible travel and tourism.
  • It is the first and only international labelling scheme for the promotion of ethical business standards in Accessible Tourism for All.   
  • The Code consists of 8 guiding principles which businesses and organisations follow, so as to make travel and tourism accessible for all visitors who experience access difficulties. These customers may need better access and services due to disability, long-standing health problems, age-related conditions or other temporary or permanent personal conditions which restrict their access.
  • The guiding principles of the Code are based on the objectives of ENAT, (as contained in the Association's statutes), and also on sound and ethical business practices which enhance accessibility, sustainability and the quality of customer service.
  • The first 24 businesses received their certificates in 2009. 
  • Over 40 ENAT members had signed the Code of Good Conduct by the end of 2010.   

Why is the Code needed?

  • Signing the ENAT Code of Good Conduct is an expression of the commitment a business or organisation makes to its customers and partners to promote and strive for better access to its premises, its services and information. 
  • The Code is primarily intended for public or private enterprises that directly serve tourists, in Europe and countries around the world. It can also be used by organisations involved in, for example: tourism policy-making; planning, design and management of tourist venues; production or management of tourism facilities and equipment; tourism marketing, education and training and travel and tour services.
  • ENAT has launched the Code as a way of enabling customers and businesses to find reliable, trustworthy suppliers in the Accessible Tourism field. These must be people who share ENAT's values and who strive to improve the quality of their services, making tourism more accessible, comfortable and safer for everyone .

Who follows the ENAT Code, and why?

  • The Code of Good Conduct is offered only to paid-up ENAT Members, as a supplementary service.There is no extra charge. Signing up to the commitments in the Code is optional. Some members may feel that not all the principles are relevant to their work, for example if they are an educational or professional training institution. Others may feel that they are not ready to commit to all the demands of the Code until they have put certain policies or practices in place.
  • ENAT Members who sign the Code undertake a pledge to serve all their customers responsibly and with due care to their access needs. They also agree, as far as possible, to use only those suppliers who adhere to principles of the Code. 
  • After they have signed the Code and provided the details of an accessibility resource person in their organisation, ENAT issues the member with a Code of Good Conduct Certificate and a window sticker, which can be displayed on their premises, as evidence of their commitment. The window sticker bears the year in which it is valid and a new sticker is issued annually to members who re-subscribe to ENAT.
    The ENAT Code of Good Conduct logo may also be used on their website or in printed marketing and advertising material. 
  • The ENAT Members' Directory, which can be viewed freely on-line by the general public, allows potential visitors and businesses to verify ENAT Members' contact details and type of business activity. The Directory will provide public verification of those members who have signed the Code of Good Conduct and those who have not. (New feature, to be implemented soon).      
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From San Francisco Bay comes a story of interdependence and sailing.


Floor marker for people with disabilities in N...

Image via Wikipedia


"Findability precedes usability in the alphabet and on the web. You can't use what you can't find." Peter Morville - Ambient Findability

But what happens when you can't "find" the alphabet?

Well, that might be because you are print-disabled person and the information that you seek exists but is in a format that is not findable with the assistive technology (AST) that you use.

The Reading Rights Coalition points out that:

George Kerscher coined the term "print disabled" (circa 1988-1989) to describe persons who could not access print.

The definition is as follows:

print disabled, noun; print-disabled, adjective.

A person who cannot effectively read print because of a visual, physical, perceptual, developmental, cognitive, or learning disability.

When used as an adjective, the word should be hyphenated, e.g. print-disabled person.

(outdated) The Higher Education Opportunity Act defines "print disabled" as "a student with a disability who experiences barriers to accessing instructional material in non-specialized formats, including an individual described in Title 17 of the Copyright Act."

The Google Library Project Settlement defines "print disabled" as "User is unable to read standard printed material due to blindness, visual disability, physical limitations, organic dysfunction or dyslexia."


Data Conversion Laboratory dives deeper with George Kerscher into solutions based on XML and the DAISY format in this interview. An excerpt:


 What does all this mean for people with disabilities?

George Kerscher:

 RFB&D launched its digital service on September 3, 2002. This marks the transition from more than 50 years of analog (with the last 25 years being on 4-track cassette). The powerful navigation of the DAISY format makes the cassette obsolete. And I predict a rapid adoption of this technology. Once we start to use text encoded in XML, we can begin to deliver full text synchronized with full audio multimedia product. This dual reinforcement ... see it and hear it at the same time ... is what we believe will make a real difference in the education of all persons with print disabilities. I believe it will revolutionize education for this disability group. No kidding, we are on the verge of a breakthrough that will change the lives of people with print disabilities.

Read the full interview:

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Image by Getty Images via @daylife

by Shirley Barber

"Do you know what my favourite part of the game is?
The opportunity to play"

How Barbados is leading the way with adaptive sports

Barbados has been synonymous with cricket since the 1800's so it was not surprising that the island was also in the forefront with it's creation of the first blind cricket program in the Caribbean in 2001.


Inter territorial matches have since been played with   much success.  Barbados hosted the first regional   tournament in 2006 and in the same year,  became  the first territory to establish the Barbados Blind Cricket Association.  This was followed by the creation of the Jamaica Visually Impaired Cricket Association, T & T Blind Cricket Association. (Trinidad and Tobago) and Guyana Blind Cricket Association


There have been many "firsts" for Barbados, so at a time when global awareness of accessibility and inclusion are at the forefront,   might Barbados   once again demonstrate its   leadership by expanding its blind cricket program to include an all  disability program?


Cricket  and How it  has Survived  and Evolved into Including Persons with  all Disabilities


The earliest cricket  may have developed by the 8th century or earlier from   ancient bat-and-ball games from the region   between   North India and Pakistan.  The trend traveled through Persia (now called Iran)   and into Europe and Great Britain.  Initially, the game was called "creagh" or "cricke"   by the Normans who conquered England in 1066.


Cricket was banned from 1300 - 1500 A.D. as monarchs and British barons   favoured archery (which would serve as a military advantage) over  "such a disreputable activity that only idlers, gamblers and dissolute characters played".   Outlaws such as Robin Hood were rumoured to having been excellent players along with famous political leader Oliver Cromwell.


Deaf Cricket


Interestingly, the idea of "adaptive sports" came in the form of deaf cricket as far back as 1895 when the first deaf cricket interstate match was held in South Australia.   In Great Britain, deaf cricket started out as a Great Britain Team (part of the British Deaf Sports Council)   with a trip in 1988 to the West Indies by a squad of 15 players to play some matches against local teams.


Blind Cricket


In 1922,  blind cricket was developed by Australia.    At the time of a Test Match,  two creative residents thought "blind people could play cricket as well, and put rocks in a tin can" and began to play a crude version of the  modern day cricket .


Blind cricket  has also been played in England and Wales since the 1940's.  While the England and Wales Cricket Board,  established in 1997 in the U.K.,  is  the single national governing body for all cricket in England and Wales and provides access to the sport of cricket for persons with disabilities,  the British Blind Sport (BBS) and Blind Cricket England and Wales (BCEW) are the organizations who are responsible for the day to day running of the sport.


Physical, Emotional and Learning Disabilities


Along with the blind and deaf cricket,  the  Hampshire Cricket Board which was setup in 1998 in the U.K., has developed  categories and programs for persons with physical, emotional and learning disabilities,  HCB, whose mission statement is "to provide a cricketing future for all" has one of the most advanced disability cricket programs

in the country and works with professional players and coaches in assisting players with disabilities in training and competition .   


One of the newest programs HCB has launched is the Bluebird Care Elite Player Development Program for cricketers with disabilities who have international potential.   Hampshire Talented Athlete Scheme was formed to provide support services to these talented athletes based on their performance levels. 


The HCB also supports the Hampshire Visually Impaired Cricket Club in providing  opportunities for the blind and partially sighted.  


Cricket as Youth Development


Cricket for Change was setup in 1981 and targets disadvantaged youth as well as disabled youth.  Just recently, the team has traveled  to Trinidad and Tobago to introduce a new program called "Street20" which is a crime reduction program proven to be very successful  in the U.K.   As well, the team traveled to Jamaica in 2009  to launch The Courtney Walsh Foundation which replicates the Cricket for Change programs   specifically for  males and females 18 - 21.


Rules and Regulations


In disability cricket, the rules and regulations are disability specific, however there is no recognized international cricket for people with physical disabilities at the   present,  therefore the rules are based on a domestic structure called DSE profiling system for athletes with physical impairments also known as the Coaches Guide to Functional Ability.




Recognition for Barbados


Barbados already receives   recognition   for its excellence in regular and blind cricket as well as being a cricketing destination.  Through the "Fully Accessible Barbados" initiative launched by the BCD in 2005, Barbados has taken leadership in   creating a culture of inclusion.  The island is also known for its  mantra  of "can do" in the cricket world.  The cricket community along with the regular community has recognized and acknowledged what talented cricketers can contribute to the game rather than what their limitations are.


With 14,000 persons with disabilities on the island,   (in England and Wales there are between 3,000 and 4,000 persons with disabilities playing regular or occasional cricket at present),  creating an all disability cricket program would be welcomed.  Such a program would give persons with all types of disabilities an opportunity to play the sport of their island where they could develop their self confidence and social skills.   As well, the camaraderie along with the exhilaration and excitement of international competition can be experienced for the first time.


Barbados could introduce programs similar to the Hampshire Talented Athlete Scheme to recognize and support those disabled cricketers who demonstrate exceptional performance and could be considered for international competition


The island  could draw on the  expertise  of other cricket boards such as the Hampshire Cricket Board and the English and Wales Cricket Board. As well, Barbados could seek the support and input from non profit organizations such as BARNOD, Barbados Council for the Disabled,  Disabled Peoples' Organization of North America and the Caribbean (DPOC) and Disabled People's International.    There are ample resources to access with the deaf, physical, learning, and emotional disabilities programs already in place.  The combined efforts could  serve well to set the ground work for education and  training programs to encompass all the Caribbean islands and beyond.







Cricket for Change, Street20 and The Courtney Walsh Foundation would be excellent programs to integrate into the cricket world of Barbados.  Although the crime rate is low in Barbados, it is a known fact that sometimes poverty goes hand-in-hand with disabilities and where there is poverty, there is crime; particularly among youths. Street20  has been successful in reducing crime amongst the youth stating that  "the more kids play the more skills they develop, they learn cooperation, discipline and working with a team without getting angry;  it has had a lot of success bringing communities together ",


Barbados as the Caribbean's Champion and Host of Disability Cricket


On May 31, 2011, Hampshire Cricket announced   that the Barbados Tourism Authority will become the Official Twenty20 Shirt Sponsor and Travel Partner to Hampshire Cricket and The Rose Bowl.  Upon a previous visit to Barbados, Hampshire Cricket Group Commercial Director, Zac Toumazi said that Barbados' facilities and hospitality were   "second to none" and that "We hope that, in our own way, we can bring awareness to the jewel in the Caribbean that is Barbados."


Might there be a possibility that similar arrangements can be made with disability cricket?  Perhaps the Barbados Tourism Authority could consider reciprocal agreements with disability cricket programs in England, Australia, India, Pakistan, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Bangladesh and Nepal


If Barbados were to host  all disability cricket tournaments, the potential for increased tourism would be significant.  Regular cricket teams already visit Barbados annually and Test matches, especially between England and Australia alone bring in thousands, so the numbers would increase substantially.


In conclusion, creating a disability cricket program   could reaffirm Barbados' position as leader in accessibility, inclusion and adaptive sports in the Caribbean.  Moreover,   this  positive endeavour could contribute significantly to the enhancement of the initiative of  "Fully Accessible Barbados".




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