2011 Asia Pacific Regional Disability Rights Monitor Training


03-10 July, 2011

Prince Palace Hotel
Bangkok, Thailand

Ms. Chona M. Sabo
Regional Officer
Disability Rights Promotion International-Asia Pacific (DRPI-AP)
Disabled People’s International Asia-Pacific (DPI/AP)
Email: Email Ms. Chona Sabo

Date: July 03 – 10, 2011

Venue: Prince Palace Hotel, Bangkok, Thailand

Organizers: Disability Rights Promotion International (DRPI)

In collaboration with Disabled Peoples’ International-Asia Pacific (DPI/AP)

Purpose of the Training Workshop:

Disability rights monitoring involves collecting information about the whether or not persons with disabilities are able to enjoy their human rights. Credible and accurate information about the human rights situation of people with disabilities can persuade governments that abuses are occurring and that action is needed to fulfill human rights obligations. Recording information about the experiences of individual persons with disabilities can uncover a pattern of discrimination affecting large numbers of people. Data outlining the extent of disability discrimination can:

  • promote greater awareness of the need for social change,
  • provide facts and figures useful for lobbying and other advocacy, and
  • supply governments with credible documentation to support the creation of more inclusive social policies and laws.

The DRPI project has developed a holistic approach to monitoring disability rights, focusing on finding the facts in three key areas:

  1. Individual experiences of persons with disabilities (through face to face interviews);
  2. Systemic measures taken to protect and promote disability rights (laws, policies, programs)
  3. Societal attitudes toward disability (by looking at depictions and coverage of disability in the media)


  • Learning about DRPI’s tools and methods for monitoring in the first two focus areas (individual experiences of persons with disabilities and systems).
  • Addressing how the information collected can be analysed and reported as well as how to organize and coordinate a disability rights monitoring project.


Limited only to five countries in Asia-Pacific Region namely:

  1. Bangladesh – Bangladesh Protibandhi Kallyan Somity (BPKS)
  2. Cambodia – Cambodian Disabled Peoples’ Organization (CDPO)
  3. Lao PDR – Lao Disabled People’s Association (LDPA)
  4. Nepal – National Federation of the Disabled- Nepal (NFDN)
  5. Thailand – Council of Disabled People of Thailand (CDPT)

Abided by its set criteria, these five countries were chosen in collaboration with Disability Rights Promotion International and its partner organization Disabled Peoples International-Asia Pacific. The people involved were Marcia Rioux, Co-director of DRPI, Rita Samson, International Project Coordinator of DRPI, Christopher Lytle, Research Associate of DRPI, Chona Sabo, Regional Officer of DRPI-Asia Pacific and Saowalak Thongkuay, Regional Development Officer of DPI/AP.

Organizing the Regional Training

1. Choosing the Five Countries

It took four (4) months to organize the regional workshop in Bangkok, Thailand from late February until June. It started from identifying eight possible countries within Asia Pacific region which are proactively involve and committed in promoting disability rights for People with Disabilities, countries that are eligible for Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) funding and those that ratified the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). We narrowed it down to five qualified countries following these criteria;

– To sign and ratify the UN Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities;

– To have the laws protecting the people with disabilities in their country;

– To have a steering committee for the Decade on the Rights of Persons with Disability;

– To have a stronger National Federation working at countrywide on behalf of persons with disabilities;

– To have Disabled Peoples Organizations who have in their agenda, the disability rights monitoring system

– To have one person in the UN Committee on the Rights of People with Disabilities should be a plus advantage.

Very intense examinations of the eight proposed countries were made. Finally, using these criteria, the five countries were chosen to participate in the DRPI Asia Pacific Regional Disability Rights Monitoring Training in Bangkok, Thailand.

  1. Bangladesh
  2. Cambodia
  3. Lao
  4. Nepal
  5. Thailand

2. Choosing the Disabled Peoples Organizations and Federations

In each country, we identified national cross-disability organizations and federations which are actively involve in promoting the rights of people with disabilities and those have member organizations in their countries. Their active participation both national and international and engagement in promoting disability rights were among of the factors that we considered in choosing the five organizations in those five chosen countries.

The five organizations that represent their countries are as follows:

Bangladesh was represented by Bangladesh Protibandhi Kallyan Somity (BPKS)

Bangladesh Protibandhi Kallyan Somity (BPKS) was established in 1985. As a result of the need for national cross disabilities organization, work for people with disability and run by people with disabilities. The leading vision of BPKS is to create society where all individuals including people with disabilities enjoy their human rights and have equal opportunity to enhance their livelihoods and dignities. Therefore, the mission of BPKS is full commitment to people with disabilities causes and rights to live in barrier free society where their dignities are protected and they are capable to fulfill their human potentials in all aspects of life. BPKS believe this vision and mission cannot be achieved without people with disabilities themselves play important role in the decision making of every steps in the road to accomplish their objectives.

For more information visit the BPKS website.

Cambodia was represented by The Cambodian Disabled Peoples’ Organization (CDPO)

Cambodian Disabled People’s organization (CDPO) represents persons with disabilities in 23 provinces in Cambodia. CDPO’s mission is to support, protect, serve, and promote the rights of persons with disabilities as well as to promote the interest of persons with disabilities so that they can fully and equitable participate in society. CDPO was established in 1984. Currently CDPO has over 10,000 members (men, women, girls and boys with different types of disabilities) belonging to 37 Disabled peoples Organizations and 8 Women with Disabilities Forum in all 23 provinces of Cambodia.

For more information visit the CDPO website

Lao PDR was represented by Lao Disabled People’s Association (LDPA)

Lao Disabled People’s Association (LDPA) is a civil society organization. It represents rights, dignity and equality of people with all types of disability. It has been established by the willingness and voluntary of a group of disabled people they and it functions in accordance with the constitution of the Lao PDR. The organization functions on compliance with the by-law of the LDPA, members of the committee have been elected in the National Election Meeting.

For more information download this PDF about the LDPA

Nepal was represented by National Federation of the Disabled- Nepal (NFDN)

National Federation of the Disabled – Nepal (NFDN) is an umbrella organization representing the Disabled Peoples’ Organizations (DPOs) working for the cause of disability across the country. As an apex umbrella body it has been leading disability movement in Nepal since 1993m in rights based approach and working to ensure the rights and dignified life of people with disabilities by emphasizing social inclusions, mainstreaming and opportunity equalization.

For more information visit the NFDN website

Thailand was represented by Council of Disabled People of Thailand (CDPT)

The Council of Disabled People of Thailand was formed on October 20th 1983 from the inspiration of a small group of disabled people following their attendance at the Disabled People’s International Assembly in Singapore, 1982. This group realized that citizens with disabilities in Thailand had long been ignored by their government and society and did not enjoy the same rights and privileges as their fellow citizens.  Furthermore, people with disabilities did not have the same opportunities or chances to participate in the activities that would allow them to enter the main stream of Thai society. As such, disability groups of all kinds joined together with a common bond to form the Council.  Having a common voice in their fight for equality to pursue legislation in the Thai Parliament that would guarantee them legal rights

3. People Involved in the Organization

Disability Rights Promotion International Coordination Centre

  • Marcia Rioux – Co-Director of DRPI
  • Bengt Lindqvist – Co-Director of DRPI
  • Rita Samson- International Project Coordinator of DRPI
  • Christopher Lytle – Research Associate of DRPI

Disabled Peoples’ International – Asia Pacific Regional Centre

  • Saowalak Thongkuay – Regional Development Officer of DPI/AP
  • Chona Sabo – Regional Officer of DRPI – Asia Pacific

Supporting Staff:

  • Kwanruthai Savangsri – Disability-Related Adaptations
  • Sureeporn Yupa – Transportation Arrangement
  • Worapan Buranasilpin – Accommodation Arrangement
  • Walaiphorn Phanomkun – Financial Arrangement
  • Supawat Samurpak – Certificates and Name Tags
  • Nittayaporn Tharasuk – Sight Seeing Activity
  • Wansao Chaiyakul – supporting staff
  • Taisuke Miyamoto – supporting staff
  • Mariam Ali – supporting staff
  • Apanee Mitthong – supporting staff
  • Somchay Phumcharoen – driver & photographer
  • Anurak Suasum – driver/supporting staff

4. Accommodation

The training was held at Prince Palace Hotel and so participants and facilitators stayed at Prince Palace Hotel for nine nights upon their arrival on July 2 until the date of departure, July 11.

Prince Palace Hotel is perfectly located in the governmental and commercial heartland of downtown Bangkok, where you find many old town attractions, government offices and garment business offering good bargains. It is also within easy access to the Expressway network leading to the Airport or anywhere else.

The hotel premise comprises 4 towers occupies the 11th to 32nd floor of the Bobae Tower. The lower floors of Bobae Tower contain more than 1,000 shops forming a world class wholesale fashion center.

Accommodation for the participants and facilitators were provided in this hotel. Among the hotels in Bangkok, Prince Palace is considered to be the most accessible one when it comes to hotel rooms. Hotels in Bangkok commonly have only two accessible rooms for people with disabilities. And Prince Palace hotel does have several rooms with accessible toilets having handrails in it and bigger space rooms. Accommodation was catered in Tower 1 and the training venue was in Tower 2. Accessible ramps and lifts were provided in the hotel which links Tower 1 to Tower 2.

5. Food

Food (breakfast, lunch & dinner) was provided by the organizers from 3rd – 10th of July. Per Diem was provided on 2nd of July (arrival date) and on 11th of July to participants whose departure flights were late.

Halal Foods were served to complement with participants’ food restrictions.

6. Transportation

Transportation was arranged for picking up and sending off the participants and facilitators from and to the airport and hotel. Two vans were provided (one with lift and one without lift). On 3rd of July for the Sight Seeing Activity, four vans were provided from and to the hotel, Rattanakosin Exhibition Hall, Sky High Restaurant, Grand Palace and MBK Centre.

7. Disability-Related Adaptations

Accessibility was made available during the training not just for the venue but also for the training materials. Training materials in English were adapted into Thai for the participants from Thailand & Lao PDR and Khmer version for the participants from Cambodia. Khmer Language Interpreter, Thai Language Interpreters, Thai Sign Language Interpreters and American Sign Language Interpreters, translation booth and equipment were provided to develop good communication during the training between and among facilitators and participants who doesn’t speak the English language and those who have hearing disability.

8. Facilitators

  • Chief Facilitator

    • Marcia Rioux – DRPI Co-Director and York University Professor, Canada
  • Co-Facilitators

    • Christopher Lytle – DRPI Research Associate, Canada
    • Nathan Bond – National Executive Committee Member of Disabled Persons Assembly, New Zealand
    • Lauro Purcil – Chairperson, National Committee on the UN Conventions of Katipunan ng May Kapansanan sa Pilipinas, Inc., Philippines

9. Guest Speakers

The opening ceremony was headed by Ms. Marcia Rioux, co-director of DRPI and Ms. Saowalak Thongkuay, Regional Development Officer of DPI/AP with Chona Sabo, Regional Officer of DRPI – Asia Pacific. The participants were welcomed with an inspiring thoughts to ponder from our honored guests speakers Mr. Patrik Andersson, Chief, Social Integration Section, Social Development Division, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) of Bangkok, Thailand and Ms. Kingkaew Inwang, Secretary-General of National Office for Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, The Ministry of Social Development and Human Security of Bangkok, Thailand. Then, the training had been moved to start and set forth for a new beginning towards disability rights monitoring in Asia Pacific region.

Having a law is a good start. However, to have real progress, laws must be enforced and rights of persons with disabilities must be explicitly respected, protected and fulfilled

Mr. Patrik Andersson

Chief, Social Integration Section, Social Development Division, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), Thailand

South to South cooperation is the key to promoting the human rights of persons with disabilities in developing countries, because we can easily share common experiences and good practices with each other.

Ms. Kingkaew Inwang

Secretary-General of National Office for Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (NEP)

The Ministry of Social Development and Human Security, Thailand

(Speeches of Patrik Andersson and Kingkaew Inwang are appended in this report (Annexes 9 & 10).)

10. Sight Seeing Activity around Bangkok

The 3rd of July, 2011 was the Election Day in Thailand and so in-country participants and speakers were not available. As an alternative means, a sight seeing activity around Bangkok was provided for the out-of-country participants and moved the opening ceremony on 4th of July, 2011.

Summary of Evaluation Report

Evaluation Report

Participants were encouraged to respond to an Evaluation Form, the results which appear below. These results have the potential to review the workshop and evaluate its success.

1) What is the overall evaluation of the workshop?

Majority of the participants wrote that the Regional Disability Rights Monitoring Training done was very good and helpful in doing the country monitoring in their respective countries and in writing the report about the human rights of people with disabilities.

The Pie Chart below illustrates that the workshop was rated “Excellent” or “Very Good” or “Good” by the majority of participants. Out of 22 participants who filled in the evaluation form, 15 rated the training “Very Good”. No “Fair” and “Poor” ratings were observed.

Rating of Overall Workshop


Figure 1: Illustrative results of the Rating of the Workshop

This diagram shows a pie graph indicating that 68% of participants rated the workshop as very good, 18% good and 14% excellent

Table 1: Results of the Evaluation of the Workshop
Rating Number of Respondents
Total 22
Excellent 3
Very Good 15
Good 4
Fair 0
Poor 0

2) What parts of the workshop they find most useful?

For the participants, the NVivo session, mock interview portion (getting the consent) and the process of monitoring and reporting of human rights issues were found to be the most useful part in the workshop. The NVivo as an important tool in gathering and keeping the data in a most accurate way, mock interview as a right way to know on how to approach the respondents and then monitoring and reporting as an essential part of the whole process in conducting a holistic country monitoring in their countries.

3) Where there any parts of the workshop that they did not find useful or that should be improved.

The participants find the workshop as a useful one.

But, these are some things that they pointed out which needs to be improved:

  • The training should not be too long and should keep the participants free after in the evening.
  • The facilitator must be time conscious (coffee breaks & lunch) and avoid overtime sessions. –Time Management
  • Avoid sudden changes of the schedule (cancelling & moving of activities) as it affects the participants and interpreters schedules (it affects everybody’s plan) which greatly affect their interest of participation.
  • There should be an ice breaker so participants won’t get sleepy.
  • There should be a video clip for mock interview so other participants can comment.

4) The participants rank the following using these scale:

According to the results below, majority of participants rank the following:

  • Organization – very good
  • Transport – very good
  • Hotel – good
  • Food – very good
  • Assistance – very good

Figure 2: Graph illustrating the ranks of Organization, Transport, Hotel, Food and Assistance during the training.

This diagram shows a bar graph indicating that most participants rated the services provided by the training as good or very good. The information is also represented in Table 2 below

Table 2: Results in ranking the Organization, Transport, Hotel, Food and Assistance using the scale above.
Very Good Good Satisfactory Poor Unacceptable No. of Respondents
Organization 13 8 1 0 0 22
Transport 11 9 2 0 0 22
Hotel 6 9 5 2 0 22
Food 11 7 4 0 0 22
Assistance 14 7 1 0 0 22
Comments in any of the above:
  • Hotel doesn’t have Braille tactile so it is not accessible for the blind.
  • Recommend to use Thai Government dormitory which is accessible for all types of disabilities.
  • The venue is nice but participants should have an internet access for free (internet access is so slow and expensive).
  • Distance between the accommodation rooms and the training room (far).
  • Foods are spicy (should prepare food according to every individual’s preference).
  • Provide an allowance per day, if possible take off one meal and provide money for that meal (let the participants eat outside).

5) What did the participants learn in this workshop?

In this workshop, the participants learned the following:

  • Using NVivo and its importance in conducting a country monitoring.
  • Importance of human rights and its five principles to be use as an indicator in monitoring.
  • Integrating the individual experiences data, systems data and DPOs experiences.
  • Experiences and human rights situation of Persons with Disabilities in other countries.
  • How to monitor People with Disabilities’ rights and gather theoretical knowledge in writing a report in line with UNCRPD.
  • Proper way of conducting the interview and learning to be patient, listen by heart and not just with ears.
  • Importance of monitoring and writing parallel report.
  • Ways on how to become an effective monitor.

6) What has impressed the participants in this workshop?

In this workshop, the participants were impressed of the following:

  • UNCRPD handbook and philosophy of DRPI training.
  • Using NVivo and holistic reporting.
  • The DRPI Systemic Templates.
  • Methodology of the workshop (open discussion and participation).
  • Ideas expressed by other participants during group discussion.
  • Dedication of facilitators and their expertise in analyzing and data gathering.
  • Willingness and interest of participants to learn especially in using the NVivo software.
  • The interpreters were very good.
  • Training package (training materials & disability-related adaptations).
  • Hardworking staff.
  • The acceptance of every individual’s differences during the workshop.
  • The sightseeing activity around Bangkok, Thailand.

7) Do they have any comments about the organization of the workshop?

Participants’ comments about the organization of the workshop are as follows:

  • The organization is good but, preparing the activity in day time is good rather than having it in the evening.
  • The schedule is very tight.
  • Payment to participants is late.
  • Very nice management and nice workshop.
  • The communication and coordination is very satisfying.
  • Suggestion: DRPI should give importance to Women with Disabilities’ participation in the disability movement.

8) Do they have any comments about the workshop Facilitators?

Participants’ comments about the workshop Facilitators are as follows:

  • Very good/Excellent
  • Very appreciative, accommodating, approachable, energetic and friendly.
  • They work well altogether in solving a problem.
  • Should change teaching to participation (give more time to participants to talk more, facilitators should not talk more).
  • Facilitators should give more time to participants who have hearing disability to participate.
  • Should stick to the topics and think about time of the workshop.
  • Should include games or exercise so as to make participants lively.

9) What will the participants do after this workshop?

After this workshop, the participants wrote that they will do the following:

  • Try to teach other members of organizations in writing a country monitoring report.
  • Share new information to other monitors, site coordinators and project coordinators for future reference.
  • Disseminate the knowledge gained to other DPOs for the enactment of legislation on disability.
  • Improve ourselves and learn more about disability and law.
  • Increase awareness about human rights.
  • Advocate and support any advocacy in ratifying the UNCRPD.
  • Start monitoring and writing parallel reports about human rights situation of people with disabilities in our country.
  • Start working with Disability Rights Promotion International (DRPI).
  • Seek for help in translating the training materials into our own language.
  • Report back to our organizations and submit Project Proposal to implement country monitoring in our country.
  • Continue the NVivo and share it to others.


The results in this Evaluation Report can potentially act as a good tool for further improvements to the next events that will be organized by DRPI and DPI/AP.

This report illustrates that this workshop was a successful event. But of course, there is always a room for improvement. The ‘lowest’ rank was measured in the accessibility of the venue. And the weak points in terms of organization are time management and tight and not fix schedule during the training. The training materials also had a problem in terms of translation (usage of words). Due to the time constraint, Khmer translation was done in Thailand and not in Cambodia. It is very important to do the translation in their respective countries, as the usage of words may always differ.

Responses from the participants that we can declare as positive are that they learned during the training and are passionate in implementing disability rights monitoring in their respective countries. They are eager to learn more and apply what they had learned after the training. They also appreciate the efforts and dedications of facilitators and staff in realizing the training.

All the participants were given a freedom to write freely any feedback in the evaluation form. Some did not submit the evaluation form but majority of them fill it up and wrote that this was an overall booming and of high importance event in monitoring the human rights situation of People with Disabilities all across the region.