By MUNAMBEZA MUWANEI -
THE Cheshire Homes Society of Zambia (CHSZ) is working with the ministries of Health and General Education to come up with programmes that will enable the enrolment of children with disabilities in mainstream schools.
CHSZ executive director Miyoba Hamuhuma said the programmes would enable children with disabilities attend school without any difficulties.
One of the programmes was the rehabilitation of public schools in making them accessible to children with disabilities.
Mr Hamahuma, who was speaking in an interview in Choma said the rehabilitation had been completed at some schools in Mazabuka, Monze and Pemba which had become accessible to children with disabilities.
Rehabilitation includes the putting up of ramps for wheel chairs, compatible desks, pathways and modified lavatory seats.
“We are working with the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Health as we want children with disabilities to be enrolled in mainstream education, so we want the schools to be accessible.
“We are happy that the Government is implementing inclusive education programmes,” he said.
He said his organisation was working with the University of Zambia, Zambia Open University and the Ministry of General Education on the training of teachers to handle students with disabilities.
So far, 180 teachers have been trained and another 40 teachers would be trained during a session set for February 22, in Mazabuka.
“We have identified teachers who are focal points for children with disabilities so far we have trained 180 teachers and we hope to train more, “he said.
He commended the Government for scrapping examination fees for Grade 12s, but appealed for free education for people with disabilities.
He said his organisation was also advocating for children with disabilities to be given access to decent jobs not just as telephone operators.
Meanwhile, Mr Hamahuma said his organisation was also working on advocacy programmes to find out from the various political parties what they will do for people with disabilities if elected during the August 11, 2016 general elections.