Representative organisation

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Participation to design, implementation and evaluation of DRR programmes is essential and enshrined in relevant policy and legal framework. People from at-risk groups often participate through their representative organisations. 

Representative organisations:

  • Are led, directed and governed by persons from the at-risk group themselves.
  • Have a clear majority of their membership consisting of persons from the at-risk group themselves.
  • Are committed to and fully respect the principles and rights recognized in the relevant policy frameworks protecting the rights of the at-risk group.
  • Are established predominantly with the aim of collectively acting, expressing, promoting, pursuing and/or defending the rights of the at-risk group.
  • May represent one or more constituencies/at-risk groups.
  • Can be local, national, regional or international in scope.

Organisations of persons with disabilities (DPOs) are organisations made up of persons with disabilities to represent the rights and interests of their members. Inline with the CRPD, best practice is that DPOs comprise a voting membership of persons with disabilities, and a board, of which at least a majority is made up of persons with disabilities. Some DPOs represent people with all impairment types, while others may focus on a particular impairment type, gender, sectoral issue, or represent geographical areas (local, provincial, national, regional or international). A DPO might exist as a national platform with members at local level. Where there are no formal DPOs, there might be Self-Help groups or other loose networks of persons with disabilities and disability rights activists. There are international DPO networks that can provide information about their regional and national DPO members, such as International Disability Alliance.

Women with disabilities remain at the intersection of gender inequality and disability stigma, and thus often find themselves specifically marginalised and at risk during and after a disaster. They are starting to organise in networks or alongside womens’ organisations.

Older persons are increasingly organising themselves into networks and associations, called Older People’s Associations (OPA). They are usually led in majority by older men and women and promote the rights and inclusion of their members and older people in general. 

How to contact them?

Contact the international representative organisations beforehand at their headquarters, they will probably have information about specific countries and contacts to provide. At country level, representative organisations might be registered with the relevant national authority or registry of social ministry at local levels. Disability and age specific NGOs as well will be able to put you in contact with these organisations.

Sources