APRIL 2014
Message from the President
Dear Colleagues
In this issue you will find details of encouraging progress in our work with the
EFA-VI Global Campaign, our higher education initiative, the Vision Alliance, the
International Disability and Development Consortium, the development of a new
technology strategy and more. I should like particularly to draw your attention to
the IDP Africa Forum, which will be organised in Kampala in October 2014. Our
Executive has decided to re-launch the EFA-VI Campaign in conjunction with the
Forum in order to increase its visibility and also to promote its wider
implementation throughout the education sector. We will also be organising
meetings of the Executive Committee, Global Task Force and Regional Chairs in
Kampala around the time of the Africa Forum, and the significant presence of
ICEVI will help to raise the profile of our work in the vast Africa region.
A key priority at the moment is the development of a technology strategy as part
of the EFA-VI campaign. In conjunction with our international partners and other
experts, we are developing a number of pilot projects to demonstrate how
technology can expand educational opportunities for children with visual
impairment in developing countries and enhance the quality of education. The
aim will then be to scale these up on the basis of the models which appear to
work best. We gratefully acknowledge the generosity of Sightsavers and RNIB in
helping to fund this work.
Soon ICEVI is likely to become a member of the Global Campaign for Education
(GCE) and we have already been making a useful contribution to their Global
Action Week designed to highlight issues of disability and inclusion.
The Vision Alliance comprising IAPB, ICEVI and the WBU will put up an exhibition
stand in the forthcoming Lions International Convention in Toronto in July 2014
with the aim of bringing our organisations closer to the Lions movement
With the help of lawyers in London we are modernising our constitution. As part
of this work, we will aim to streamline our operations by registering all our
regions in London alongside the global organisation. We gratefully acknowledge
the support of RNIB with this work.
I also take this opportunity to congratulate Nandini Rawal, our Treasurer, who has
become the Executive Director of the Blind People's Association, one of the largest
organisations in India working in the disability sector.
I look forward to meeting those of you, who will be in Kampala in October.
Colin Low
President, ICEVI
APRIL 2014
ICEVI Strategy Document Revised
The ICEVI Strategy has been revised by incorporating the inputs
provided by members of the Executive Committee at the meeting held
in Vienna in November 2013. Global advocacy, networking, lobbying
with governments, strengthening national initiatives, promoting
national level centres of excellence, emphasis on regional development
etc., are some of the key focus areas of the ICEVI revised strategy.
This document has also been published in the January 2014 issue of
The Educator for the benefit of the larger ICEVI Constituency. As
strategy document is always a dynamic one, it will undergo revisions
periodically to accommodate the growing trends in the disability sector
particularly with reference to visual impairment. The next revision will
take place at the end of the Quadrennium 2013-16.
Participation in Online consultations of UNICEF
Working Groups
Following the participation of ICEVI at the global programme for
children with disabilities, conducted in UNICEF, New York in September
2013, ICEVI was included in two working groups of UNICEF viz., Policy
Beyond 2015 and Teacher Preparation. ICEVI took part in a number of
online consultations on these subjects since then and contributed to
various discussion areas. ICEVI will continue to strengthen its
collaboration with UN bodies to ensure that the disability agenda
becomes an integral part of the larger initiatives on education.
Participation in IDDC Task Group
Following the inclusion of ICEVI on the Inclusive Education Task Group
(IETG) of the International Disability and Development Consortium
(IDDC), M.N.G. Mani, CEO attended the face-to-face meeting of IETG
held at the CBM office in Brussels, Belgium in February 2014. One of
the key recommendations of the task group was to celebrate the Global
Action Week (GAW) 2014, which lays a special focus on disability.
Subsequently ICEVI encouraged its Regional Chairpersons to organize a
number of programmes including capacity building, lobbying with
governments for strengthening proactive policies about disability etc.
The Africa, Latin America, and West Asia regions collaborated with
APRIL 2014
many of our international partners at the regional and national levels to
organize activities to observe the Global Action Week.
Discussions on WBU-ICEVI Joint General Assemblies
As a result of the successful joint assemblies of WBU and ICEVI held in
Bangkok 2012, the ICEVI Executive Committee endorsed the proposal
to organize joint assemblies in 2016 and in this connection a bid from
the National Federation of the Blind (NFB), Baltimore, USA had been
received. Mr. Arnt Holte (President) and Penny Hartin (CEO) both from
WBU and M.N.G. Mani (CEO) representing ICEVI had a detailed
discussions with the officers of NFB in February 2014 and also visited a
few potential venues in Baltimore to organize the joint event. Final
decision on the venue will be communicated soon through e-mail,
publications and website. One of the features proposed in the joint
assembly is that ICEVI will have an exclusive day to assist professionals
to make academic presentations. More details of the format of the
joint assembly will be available soon.
Vision Alliance Stand in the International Convention
of the Lions Clubs
Vision Alliance, a network of the International Agency for the
Prevention of Blindness (IAPB), ICEVI and WBU will be putting up an
exhibition stand in the forthcoming International Lions Convention to be
held in Toronto from 3rd to 8th July 2014. Penny Hartin and Mani, CEOs
of WBU and ICEVI will attend the convention and interact with the Lions
Clubs of various regions to augment educational services for persons
with visual impairment. Lions International is working in the area of
education and rehabilitation too besides its primary focus on
prevention. ICEVI regions have also been encouraged to work with the
Lions Clubs for initiating educational programmes at the local level.
The collaborative process has begun and more concrete plans at the
regional and national levels are expected to emerge in the near future.
It is heartening that the Lions Clubs International Foundation has
become one of the organizational members of ICEVI.
APRIL 2014
Extension of Higher Education Programme
ICEVI has been implementing Higher Education programme in
Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, Philippines and Vietnam to
encourage students with visual impairment pursue higher education.
Use of technology and making universities as inclusive are some of the
key components of this programme. ICEVI has been making periodical
evaluation of the higher education activities with the Nippon Foundation
and the results are encouraging. In recognizing the positive outcome
as well as the impact of the programme, the Nippon Foundation has
sanctioned necessary grants to continue the work in 2014-15. One of
the future issues of The Educator, ICEVI’s official magazine, will focus
on higher education, which will give an opportunity to the project
partners to highlight the activities and modus operandi of the
Renewed approach to higher education programme
The coordinators of the higher education programme supported by the
Nippon Foundation met in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, in February 2014 to
plan specific implementation strategies for the year 2014-15. The
coordinators suggested that the fruits of higher education can be felt
only when successful rehabilitation takes place in the case of visually
impaired individuals. In response to this recommendation, a core
group was formed to discuss additional inputs to be added to the higher
education project to increase the employability of visually impaired
individuals. The core group met in Manila in March 2014 and resolved
that the higher education programme implementation in the future
should include development of job skills in persons with visual
impairment besides their academic studies and training them in soft
skills. These components will be built into the future activities of higher
education (2015-16 onwards) in order to facilitate a smooth
transmission of students with visual impairment from education to
IDP Africa Forum – ICEVI Activities
The ICEVI will organize a number of technical sessions in conjunction
with the IDP Africa Forum to be held in Kampala, Uganda from 13 to 18
APRIL 2014
October 2014.
The technical sessions include EFA-VI Campaign,
Regional Development, Vision Alliance, Early Childhood Education and
Intervention, Low Vision, Mathematics, Education of Children with
Multiple Disabilities etc. Registration for the Forum can be made by
website ICEVI will also organize its Executive Committee
Meeting on 11th and 12th October, which will give an opportunity to its
members to interact with our colleagues in the Africa region. A detailed
programme of ICEVI workshops will be shared with ICEVI members and
also posted on our website .
Re-launch of the EFA-VI Campaign
The EFA-VI Global Campaign implemented by ICEVI acting in
partnership with World Blind Union has shown tangible results in all
regions of ICEVI.
It is certainly increasing the pressure on
governments to formulate proactive legislative measures on disability
and the enrolment of children with visual impairment in schools is
steadily increasing. EFA-VI Campaign is a testimony to the collective
synergy of our international partners, local governments, NGOs, DPOs
etc., and ICEVI continues to serve as a catalyst in bringing different
stakeholders together for a common cause. The Executive Committee,
which met in Vienna suggested the re-launch of the campaign to
provide more impetus and visibility. ICEVI is proposing to organize a
re-launch programme in conjunction with the Africa Forum in Kampala,
Uganda, where the Global Task Force of the EFA-VI will also meet, prior
to the inauguration of the IDP Forum. ICEVI is planning to bring key
personalities connected with global initiatives such as Global Campaign
for Education (GCE) for the re-launch of the EFA-VI Campaign. More
details of the re-launch activity will be available soon.
Promotion of Parents’ Activities
ICEVI had a meeting with the officials of PAVIC (Parents Advocates for
Visually Impaired Children) in Manila, Philippines on 22nd April 2014 to
strengthen joint activities in the East Asia region. ICEVI works closely
with the International Parents’ Association for the Visually Impaired and
it is in the process of promoting parents association activities at the
regional levels. The July 2014 issue of The Educator is devoted
APRIL 2014
exclusively for parental issues in order to focus parents’ perspective in
education and PAVIC will also be contributing to this special issue.
ICEVI supported the PAVIC in organising its 4th National Parents
Congress in Manila from 9 to 11 May 2014. ICEVI is also proposing to
organize its East Asia Regional Conference in partnership with PAVIC in
ICEVI Technology Strategy
Technology plays an important role in implementing ICEVI’s strategy.
Colin Low, President, ICEVI is heading an initiative to develop an
appropriate strategy in technology that will be integrated into the
EFA-VI Campaign, which has a potential to enhance the learning
experiences of students with visual impairment and at the same time,
expand educational opportunities for children who are currently
un-reached in the developing countries. This strategy is likely to
culminate into a proposal, which will bring on board our international
players to take active role supporting the technology initiative. Further
development in this area will be informed to the ICEVI members in the
second half of 2014.
ICEVI’s involvement in GCE
Since the WBU-ICEVI Joint World Assembly held in 2012, ICEVI has
been collaborating with the mainstream initiatives on education. ICEVI
has approached the Global Campaign for Education (GCE) for formal
membership which will be taken up by the GCE in the future. ICEVI
believes that it will be able to influence general initiatives to
incorporate issues dealing with disability to make the general system
more inclusive in nature.
ICEVI was invited by the Collective Consortium of Non-Governmental
Organisations (CCNGO) on Education For All to attend its meeting held
in Chile on 21-23 May 2014.
Lucia Piccione, 1st Vice-President
represented ICEVI at this important event and shared the experiences
of the EFA-VI Global campaign.
APRIL 2014
Nandini becomes the Executive Director, BPA
Nandini Rawal, Treasurer of ICEVI has been elevated to the position of
the Executive Director at the Blind People’s Association (BPA), which is
one of the largest organizations in India working in the disability sector.
Nandini takes over from Dr. Bhushan Punani, who has been made the
Executive Secretary of the BPA. Bhushan also serves as the Regional
Chair of the ICEVI West Asia region. Congratulations to both Nandini
and Bhushan.
Potential topics for The Educator
ICEVI has been focusing on thematic issues such as inclusion, teacher
preparation, technology, early intervention, low vision, Braille literacy, etc.,
for The Educator and the past issues can be accessed through the website
of ICEVI Those who have suggestions with the new topics
for the future issues of The Educator may contact its Editor Aubrey
Webson ([email protected]), or MNG Mani ([email protected]),
Associate Editor.
ICEVI E-News comes to your mailbox in May and November
every year.
Please provide us with the e-mail addresses of
may be
receiving the ICEVI E-News and The Educator.
For further details, contact:
ICEVI Secretariat
3, Professors’ Colony, Palamalai Road, S.R.K.Vidyalaya Post
Coimbatore – 641 020, Tamil Nadu, INDIA
: 91-422-2469104
: 91-422-2693414
: [email protected]
Website :
APRIL 2014