In the 75+ years that the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) has sponsored academic, professional, cultural, and sports exchange programs between the U.S. and countries worldwide, it has led the way in ensuring that people with disabilities are included and represented in citizen diplomacy.
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Mobility International USA (MIUSA), in partnership with three leading U.S. organizations, welcomed a delegation of 25 disability rights leaders from six countries to Washington D.C. for the RightsNow!: Exploring the U.S. Model conference during one week in September 2016. This prestigious and high-level conference was a part of the RightsNow!: Strong Communities through Enforcing the Rights of Persons with Disabilities project, funded by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor of the U.S. Department of State and administered by MIUSA.
The Brilliant & Resilient photo exhibition displayed at the World Bank for two weeks in September 2016. The exhibition event launched on September 21, 2016 with a reception and panel discussion on how women with disabilities across the globe are working as change agents to empower women and girls with disabilities in their communities.
This interactive session at 10:30-11:30 am on September 16, 2016, "Students with disabilities: A primer for mobility advisers," educated attendees at the European Association for International Education (EAIE) conference on strategies to resolve access barriers in study abroad. Activities sought to dispel misconceptions about specific disabilities, guide in respectful interactions, and build confidence to champion inclusion.
For 35 years, MIUSA has been changing the lives of people with disabilities through its innovative leadership exchange programs and by bridging the global disability community with the international development and exchange fields. We're proud to count 2300 alumni from 135 countries as our MIUSA family, plus an entire extended family of current and former homestay families, community supporters, funders, staff, volunteers, interns, board members, and partners...that extended family includes YOU!
Blind people access many mainstream opportunities for international exchange including study, volunteerism and internships, yet they also confront a set of unique challenges such as access to printed materials.
The World Blind Union (WBU) is an organization of associations of blind people across the world, which is actively involved in advancing the rights and opportunities of blind people to access education and employment.
The MIUSA workshop was very useful because I became more independent, brave and self-confident. I also did things that I never thought I can do. I met a lot of awesome, great and amazing people and friends! - Valeria, FLEX student from Moldova
Twenty-six international high school exchange students with diverse disabilities traveled to Eugene, Oregon, this August for an orientation prior to the start of their academic year in host communities across the United States.
Co-convening with MIUSA's signature international exchange program, WILD, the Gender, Disability and Development Institute (GDDI) brings senior-level development professionals together with disabled women leaders from developing countries, all delegates of the WILD program. The event is a unique opportunity to bridge these two communities to engage in direct dialogue about strategies for including women with disabilities in development projects throughout the world.
Two students with disabilities traveled from Russia to Eugene, Oregon in August 2016 for an orientation with MIUSA. The students are participants in the Year of Exchange in America for Russians (YEAR) program and are enrolled at higher education institutions across the U.S.
The EducationUSA Forum happened and Mobility International USA (MIUSA) was there! The annual forum is designed for professionals at accredited U.S. colleges and universities seeking to recruit, enroll, and support international students.
MIUSA staff who work on the National Clearinghouse on Disability Exchange (NCDE) project, sponsored by the U.S Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA), were represented to make sure people with disabilities are not missing from these conversations.