Projects in Nigeria

Tackling COVID-19 stigma and discrimination through the media

A man in a wheelchair is interviewed by a man holding a microphone and wearing headphones.

Project lead partner: BBC Media Action

BBC Media Action is refocusing its media brands in Nigeria to tackle a range of COVID-19 issues including preventative behaviours, myths and misinformation, government accountability, security and the additional impact of the pandemic on vulnerable groups, including people with disabilities.

This project’s work on radio, TV and social media includes accessible content for audiences with disabilities, topics reflecting the additional stigma and discrimination people with disabilities are facing as a result of COVID-19, as well as featuring their voices and views.

People with disabilities are included wherever possible to normalise their involvement as equal members of society and challenge stigma.

An inclusive COVID-19 health response

An accessibility audit is carried out.

Project lead partner: Sightsavers

Inaccessible health services are a major barrier for people with disabilities. In a crisis, these barriers are often greater and make people with disabilities more vulnerable to not receiving COVID-19-related and other essential health care.

This project is carrying out rapid accessibility audits of COVID-19 testing centres and isolation and treatment units, and is providing support to remove key barriers and improve accessibility. A small team, which has already assessed the accessibility of business premises as part of the Inclusive Futures formal employment programme, will adapt to carry out the audits.

The project will also develop a Social and Behaviour Change Communication strategy focusing on COVID-19 and disability, and operate a hotline service to provide counselling and information about pandemic relief and response services for people with disabilities.

Tackling stigma and discrimination through the media and radio

Filming an interview with a man on the streets of Nigeria.

Project lead partner: BBC Media Action

BBC Media Action is supporting media partners to produce creative, thought-provoking media programming, which tackles stigma and discrimination around disability and supports people with disabilities to have their voices featured more prominently.

This work builds on a long history of supporting the political participation and inclusion of marginalised communities in Nigeria.

As part of Inclusive Futures, the charity is also bringing its popular, long-standing radio drama, Story Story, back to the airwaves, with a new focus on disability issues. Launched back in 2004, the show encourages constructive political discussion and accountability between citizens and their leaders and has a loyal following of millions of listeners across the country.

In its latest phase, the drama will introduce new characters and plotlines to help challenge societal stigma and discrimination against people with disabilities.

Working with employers and jobseekers for long term work prospects

Two women at a desk.

Project lead partner: Sightsavers

We are working with our Nigerian partners to promote job opportunities and generate evidence about how we can make it easier for people with disabilities to find formal employment.

We’re currently supporting HR professionals to help build company capacity as disability-inclusive employers. We’ve supported Unilever in rolling out company internal disability audits and in the recruitment of qualified job seekers with disabilities to undertake job shadowing. The Chartered Institute of Personnel Management has mentored 31 job seekers; thanks to this project, seven of them are now in full-time jobs/internships, increasing the total number of job seekers employed to 13.

Inclusive primary education

A group of children with disabilities sit at desks in an outside classroom.

Project lead partner: Sightsavers

In Kaduna State, we are working with education authorities, education professionals, children with disabilities and their families, and disabled people’s organisations to develop a community-driven model for inclusive education in public schools. Our goal is to increase access to quality education for primary-aged children with disabilities in their local school.

Through a system-strengthening approach, we want to develop innovative and scalable education practices in Kaduna State. We’re focusing on building capacity of school management committees and teachers to develop disability-inclusive education services, as well as have a better understanding of how to actively engage students with disabilities in the classroom. With support from DPOs and civil society, the project promotes setting up strong local support networks for children with disabilities (and their families) to tackle any barriers that impact their learning.

Inclusive health for improved eye care services

A woman with crutches stands in front of a whiteboard covered in notes.

Project lead partner: Sightsavers

In Kogi State, Nigeria, we are piloting an inclusive health approach to improve quality and equity in access to eye care services for women and men with disabilities.

Working with the Kogi State Government, people with disabilities and disabled people’s organisations, we’re supporting the implementation of a comprehensive eye care programme to strengthen local eye health systems and improve access to eye care for all.