Offering opportunities to women with disabilities in Cameroon’s cultural industries

Association des Femmes Handicapées Actives du Cameroun (NGO), Cameroon
IFCD funding: USD 32,701 | Timeline: March 2013 - February 2014

© UNESCO

About the Project

Empowering women with disabilities through professionalization in design, arts and crafts
The project aims to provide professional training in design, arts and crafts for young women with disabilities in the city of Yaoundé and to raise awareness of the socio-economic value of the local arts and crafts sector.

These main objectives are interdependent and complementary; activities will strengthen Yaoundé’s arts and crafts cultural industry by building up the artistic and entrepreneurial skills of these women. Finally, the project seeks to create a framework for consultation, exchange and awareness raising among stakeholders operating in the field of the cultural industries.

Project leader: Association des Femmes Handicapées Actives du Cameroun - AFHAC
The Association des Femmes Handicapées Actives du Cameroun (AFHAC – Cameroon Association of Active Women with Disabilities), a non-governmental organization created in 2006, contributes to improving conditions for women with disabilities through artistic occupations. Member of the “Inclusive Society for Persons with Disabilities” platform, the organization has a solid track record in empowering vulnerable people through arts and crafts activities and maintains an active collaboration with PROMHANDICAM, ISESCO and the ministries in charge of culture and social affairs in Cameroon.

Key targets

  • The skills of 30 unemployed women with disabilities are reinforced in occupations related to design, arts and crafts.
  • A consultative platform bringing together art and culture professionals in Cameroon is set up to raise awareness of the situation of Cameroon cultural industry professionals among the country’s cultural decision-makers.
  • An exhibition is organized and a catalogue published to present the artworks produced.

Main activities

  • Conducting a six-month training programme in design, arts and crafts for 30 out-of-school, and unemployed women with disabilities. Follow-up courses will be conducted in business planning, product commercialization, setting up SMEs and exploring alternative finding opportunities.
  • Setting up a national consultative platform, bringing together art and culture professionals in Cameroon.
  • Launching a communication campaign in order to raise awareness of Cameroon’s cultural industries among national decision-makers, as well as the general public and media.
  • Organizing an exhibition presenting the artworks produced during the capacity-building activities.

How does this project contribute to the implementation of the 2005 Convention?

  • Reinforces local artistic skills and cultural industries: by providing training in design, arts and crafts, this project will strengthen the skills of women with disabilities in Yaoundé and include them in the working world, promote income generation and underline the importance of the link between culture and development.
  • Raises awareness of the important contribution of artists, those involved in the creative process, cultural communities, and organizations that support their work, and their central role in nurturing the diversity of cultural expressions: this project promotes the participation of women with disabilities in cultural industries, by contributing not only to their economic empowerment but also to improved social cohesion.
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