The Regional Leadership Conference for Persons with Disabilities in South Asia 2010 was inaugurated at a local hotel today. The three-day conference has been organized by Special Talent Exchange Program, SightSavers Pakistan and Ministry of Social Welfare and Special Education in partnership with Telenor Pakistan’s flagship corporate responsibility program ‘Khuddar Pakistan’. Some 80 leaders of organizations working on issues related to persons with disabilities (PWD) from Pakistan as well as dignitaries from Bangladesh, Japan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand and US are also attending.
Chief Guest at the occasion, Vice President Corporate Affairs and Chief Strategy Officer Telenor Pakistan Aamir Ibrahim while commenting on the event said: “Through Telenor’s Khuddar Pakistan program we aim to provide the disabled community of Pakistan with integration and inclusion opportunities. We believe that a platform like the Leadership Conference enables participants to devise ways and means to resolve the issues that they face. It is also an opportunity for government and corporate sector stakeholders to get a clear perspective on steps necessary to mainstream Persons with Disabilities.”
Country Director, Sightsavers Pakistan, Niazullah Khan appreciated the initiative as a positive step towards inclusion of Persons with Disabilities. He said: “We are extremely satisfied with how the conference has progressed from a national initiative last year, to a regional one during 2010. We are sure that the conference will achieve its desired results and will continue to grow as a potent platform for Persons with Disabilities”.
Others who spoke at the inauguration were Muhammad Atif Sheikh, President, STEP; Akiie Nino Miya, Executive Director, APCD; Dong Lin Li, Country Director, ILO Pakistan; Toshiya Sapo Chief of JICA; and Adam Thomson, British High Commissioner to Pakistan.
The conference is expected to provide various stakeholders with an understanding of upcoming developments in the disability sector and the needs of persons with disabilities. It will close on August 2.