Paraguay: The right to decide

IMG_2925Luis Gabriel Villlareal, Inclusion International Council member for the Americas recently presented at a virtual seminar on “The Right to Decide” organised by Fundacion Saraki in Paraguay.

The seminar provided information about the right to decide, autonomy and advocacy of people with intellectual disability. Participants heard from panelists from:

Argentina: Movimiento Autogestores Argentinos de la Fundación Itineris
Spain: Down Toledo, – Área de autonomía.
Colombia: ASDOWN Colombia
Paraguay: Autogestores Paraguay – Fundación Saraki

Luis Gabriel presented Inclusion International and the work that has been done in the Americas with self-advocates. He spoke about the challenges they face and their need to expand their work with self-advocates. You can view his presentation (in Spanish) here.

He also talked about the meetings with self-advocates in other regions of Inclusion International where they discussed the challenges of people with intellectual disabilities where they said:

  • Talk for ourselves and be supported when needed, be able to say what we think.
  • Our voice is important
  • Be clear about what inclusion means. Work to achieve inclusion
  • Make our own decisions and seek support when needed
  • Be recognized as valuable people
  • Knowing that human rights are not exclusive of some, they are for everyone. They are the same for people with disabilities too.
  • We want to participate: vote, work, have fun, belong to the community.

Independent does not mean being alone … we need support to make decisions and be independent.

He highlighted what is gained when self-advocates are empowered:

  1. It makes us owners of our lives
  2. It makes us responsible
  3. It enriches us in our relationships
  4. It prevents violation of our rights
  5. It strengthens our personality
  6. It makes people acknowledge our point of view

Luis Gabrielle  also invited participants to join self-advocates in Orlando (25-29 October 2016)  and presented the GUÍA DE FORMACIÓN AUTOGESTORES: MI VOZ Y MI OPINIÓN which is part of the work of self-advocates from ASDOWN Colombia.