Education and Social Security Project was started in partnership between Swedish Autism & Asperger Association/MyRight (SHIA) and AutismCare Nepal Society. It was entitled “Increased access of persons with Autism (PWA) in Education and Social Security in Nepal” and started from 2013 . Partnership was continued for year 2014 with immediate objectives:
- ACN equipped with relevant professionals in the area of autism.
- Special school for PWA established and functional.
- Increased awareness and recognition of autism amongst authorities.
- Vocational training centre established and operational.
- ACN’s organizational capacity strengthened.
- ACN partnership cooperation increased.
- ACN’s internal management and leadership capacity improved.
- ACN’s administrative and financial management capacity improved.
ACNS continued collaboration with SAAA/MyRight to continue the same project entitled,“Increased access to Education and Social Security for the PWAs in Kathmandu” designed to empower Persons with Autism(PWAs) to protect, promote and utilize their education and social rights so that they can have full and effective participation in the society to ensure the good quality of life with following immediate objectives for year 2015-2017:
- To enhance capacity of parents/siblings/carers to address needs of PWAs.
- To increase understanding about Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and special needs regarding education and social security among policy makers and other decision makers.
- To enhance competence of health care professionals to conduct early detection of ASD.
- Enhanced competence in Autism among educational professionals in order to increase access to education for PWAs in Kathmandu.
- Strengthened organisational capacity of ACNS.
Key Achievements 2017
ACNS successfully organised an Interaction program on Autism on 31st March on the occasion of World Autism Awareness Day/Month 2017 with representatives from line ministries, different medias, disability activists, parents and staff of ACNS. The interaction program was also supported by DAP project. During the program Honorable Minister of Health Mr. Gagan Kumar Thapa was the chief guest. During the program Mr. Thapa said, “In the cases like Autism; parents, families, and organization working for it are doing. However, there is no recognition from government. These types of issues are ignored from government side. It is government responsibility to work on it. What I think main is the state and non-state partnership. There are various organizations which are proving they are enough capable in the issue and doing their best by showing the effective results. In the connection state and non-state partnership work best in achieving more result. As a state representative we want to work with the organization like Autism Care Nepal Society which is not only seeing in only one area. As a Health Minister I can’t remain silence in the Autism and its issues as it was yesterday. It’s our responsibility to work on it. We want to have partnership. I wish children/person with Autism can real feel the state is also theirs and have feeling that state has taken the responsibility towards them. This is not the matter of talk we should really work on it. I appreciated all who are working on it. Now we are compelled to say the estimated data so I request to the concerned department like NHRC to work on research identifying the needs. While celebrating next year’s World Autism Awareness Day I wish we can see or map out the progress of collaboration. Like Autism Care Nepal Society and other organization we target the plans aiming its results. Be committed..!! “.
This program has been an achievement for us to increase understanding level of government officials and raise awareness on Autism.
Key Achievements During 2016
During year 2016, Government of Nepal (GON) had amended the, “Inclusive Education Policy” by Legislative Parliament, which also addressed the educational need of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) as a result of continuous work of ACNS team and joint effort of DPOs. Advocacy was fruitful to produce positive responses from the concern stakeholders including GON; provided grant support of NRP 862,175 (SEK 71.848) through line ministries for training parents and publication of handbook for school teachers on “Inclusive Education for children with Autism”. Numbers of PWA successfully collected disability ID card throughout Nepal including 14 from Kathmandu District, which insure the support of more than 70 types of medicine free, NRP 2000 (SEK 166) every month for person with profound disabilities where NRP 600 (SEK 50) every month for person with severe disabilities by the government. 50% discount in public transportation and free assistive devices free education in all academic level in government institution for People with Disability. ACNS initiated workshop for the 40 health care professionals (paediatricians, psychiatrists, clinical/psychologists, nurses etc.) for early detection and identification of Autism/ASD through international expert and published 1000 developmental growth chart and distributed to the hospitals, clinics, health centre and relevant stakeholders. ACNS updated its strategic plan and advocacy strategy along with working process in its thematic areas. Similarly, overall ACNS financial health has become more systematic, transparent and easily manageable using “Money Works” Accounting software on day-to-day basis.
Key Achievements During 2015
During year 2015, Government of Nepal (GON) has tabled the amended Disability Right Act to Legislative-Parliament, which has mentioned Autism as separate disability in category of Disabilities. The inclusive education policy has provisioned educational need of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) as a result of continuous work of ACNS team. Advocacy and lobby work has also become successful to produce positive responses from the concern stakeholders for example MOWCSW provided grant support of NPR 500,000 (35.000 SEK) for training parents and DoE arranged to provide NRP 166,000 (11.000 SEK) for education. Numbers PWA successfully collected disability ID card throughout Nepal including 11 from Kathmandu District, which insured the support of more than 70 types of medicine free, NRP 1000 (SEK 70) every month for person with profound disabilities where NRP 300 (SEK 21) every month for person with severe disabilities by the government. 50% discount in public transportation and free assistive devices free education in all academic level in government institutions for PWDs.
ACNS developed its strategic plan and advocacy strategy along with membership guideline Monitoring and evaluation training increased competencies of EB and staffs of ACNS. Similarly, ACNS financial health has become more systematic, transparent and easily manageable using Accounting Software.