Principal Investigator: Dr Julie Marshall
|Start Date||April 2018|
|End Date||December 2018|
Elrha’s Humanitarian Innovation Fund – a grant making facility supporting organisations and individuals to identify, nurture - and share innovative and scalable solutions to the most pressing challenges facing effective humanitarian assistance. The Humanitarian Innovation Fund is a programme of Elrha and is funded by aid from the UK Government and the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) and Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA). Visit www.humanitarianinnovation.org for more information. Visit http://www.elrha.org for more information about Elrha’s work to improve humanitarian outcomes through research, innovation, and partnership.
Speech Pathology Australia
Manchester Metropolitan University
|Project Team||Dr Julie Marshall|
|External Providers and Collaborators||UNHCR Rwanda
Helen Barrett, Communicability Global
Dr Julie Marshall
Reader in Communication Disability and Development
+44 (0)161 247 2581
Rwanda is host to over 161,000 refugees mainly from DRC and Burundi, including many people with disabilities (PWD). PWD are under-identified in humanitarian contexts and many fail to access support they need. Those who are identified often have visible impairments. Up to 50% of PWD may have a communication disability (CD) (sometimes referred to as speech and language difficulties) and many people with communication disabilities (PWCD) go unidentified. This is partly because CDs are often associated with other diagnoses (e.g. intellectual disability) and are frequently invisible.
Refugees are commonly acknowledged to be at higher risk of Sexual and Gender Based Violence: (SGBV) sometimes referred to as gender based violence (SGBV) than others in a community, due to community breakdown, family separation and risky behaviours undertaken to survive. PWD are 3-4 times more likely to suffer sexual abuse and vulnerability increases further if s/he has a CD. Having a CD likely makes the reporting of SGBV challenging or impossible.
A recent literature review by Barrett & Marshall (2017) suggests that there is limited research about PWCD who are refugee-survivors of SGBV; there are no data available on the size/nature of the challenges facing refugee-survivors of SGBV with CD in accessing support; and there is extremely limited reporting of Sexual and Reproductive Health Education (SRHE) and support services specifically adapted for refugee-survivors of SGBV with CD. This project builds on a seed-funded project started in 2016.
The aim of this consultation, which has been carried out collaboratively between MMU, UNHCR Rwanda and Communicability Global, is to understand:
a) Current processes for accessing sexual and reproductive health education/ Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SRHE/SGBV) response and prevention services;
b) Availability and appropriateness of SRHE/SGBV response and prevention services;
c) Needs/opportunities for the provision of (more) inclusive SRHE and SGBV response and prevention services
- for refugees with communication disabilities, in Rwanda.
This project is a consultation and forms the first stage of the Humanitarian Innovation process (see the Humanitarian Innovation Guide) by looking at what services exist currently, how fit for purpose they are for refugees with communication disability, to begin to generate ides about solutions to improve services. The methodology draws on qualitative research methods, including participant interviews and focus group discussions
We synthesized findings from these 3 sets of data with the findings from our 2016 project, Supporting Refugee Survivors of SGBV with Communication Disability: https://www.elrha.org/project/supporting-refugee-survivors-gbv-communication-disability/ and ran a stakeholder workshop to:
The four data sets and the workshop led to agreement that:
Further detailed findings will be contained in publications, under development.
Please see the one page briefing note for more information.
Julie Marshall & Helen Barrett (2018) Human rights of refugee-survivors of sexual and gender-based violence with communication disability, International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 20:1, 44-49
Women’s refugee commission GBV against refugees with disabilities toolkit
WRC ‘I see that it is possible’ report on GBV and disability
UNHCR information: SGBV
Refugees with hearing and communication disability