Let us continue protecting the rights of Persons with Disabilities | Western Cape Government



Let us continue protecting the rights of Persons with Disabilities

4 December 2023

Disability Rights Awareness Month – which is observed between 03 November and 03 December – may be coming to an end, but we should continue recognizing that the rights of persons with disabilities are human rights. On 03 December we commemorate International Day of Persons with Disabilities.

During this month the Western Cape Minister of Social Development, Sharna Fernandez, engaged with various NGOs that are supported by the Provincial Department of Social Development (DSD) and met incredible individuals who shared their stories of hope.

The Department has allocated R164 million to support NPOs that provide therapeutic and support services.

“I was greatly moved by the passionate staff working at DSD’s Sivuyile Residential Facility, where significant upgrades are currently underway to ensure the children and adults who receive care there are extra comfortable, and those working at our NGO partners, the Carel du Toit Centre and the League of the Friends of the Blind, and not forgetting the clients at these facilities. These clients shared their inspirational journeys of living with a disability and how they have been able to access job and skills development opportunities through the support of these NGOs,” says Minister Fernandez.

“It is all about inclusion. If we as a society can do more to create accessible spaces free of discrimination, we would have the benefit of the many wonderful talents, knowledge and skills of these individuals.”

The Department, in partnership with NPOs, provides various support services to persons with disabilities to promote their well-being, protection and dignity, including:

  • Disability awareness and educational programmes;
  • Developmental supportive and therapeutic services (social work interventions): counselling, support group programmes;
  • Daycare programmes for adults and children with disabilities;
  • Support programmes for families/caregivers; and
  • Protective workshops services and residential care services.

“Disability Rights Awareness Month coincides with the 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children. So we do not forget persons with disabilities in our call for an end to violence and abuse. We should be creating more inclusive spaces where these individuals can also share their trauma and receive the same support services so that they may start their healing journey. More work needs to be done on this front. We need the support of the private sector in joining hands with government, NGOs and communities in accelerating the rights of persons with disabilities,” says Minister Fernandez.

To access more information about services offered by the Department, call our toll-free number on 0800 220 250, send an email to SD.CustomerCare@westerncape.gov.za  or visit the department’s website: https://www.westerncape.gov.za/dept/social-development

Media Enquiries: 

Monique Mortlock-Malgas
Spokesperson to MEC Sharna Fernandez

Department of Social Development

E-mail: Monique.Mortlock@westerncape.gov.za

Website: www.westerncape.gov.za