Merging Movements Practice Note

Staff training at MADRE headquarters on intersectionality.
MIUSA and MADRE are merging disability rights and women's rights movements through our innovative partnership.

"This training feels like the key to actually acting on our principles about disability rights." - Yifat Susskind, the Executive Director of MADRE

We are excited to share the impact of a two-year partnership between MIUSA and MADRE. Our innovative partnership represented a merging of women’s rights and disability rights movements, a strategy we hope more organizations will adopt in the future. In our newly released Practice Note, co-written by MIUSA and MADRE, we share our progress and learning trajectory, as well as recommendations for other development organizations and funders interested in making disability inclusion a strategic priority.

MADRE, a global women’s rights organization, wanted to ensure disability inclusion was at the core of their values and principles, so they reached out to MIUSA, a disability-led organization, to provide strategic consulting. As part of the Commitment to Inclusive Excellence Initiative, MIUSA conducted trainings with staff in MADRE's New York office and provided technical assistance to develop disability inclusion action plans. MADRE also attended MIUSA’s Gender, Disability and Development Institute (GDDI), and our organizations have collaborated in several other capacities. From participant recruitment to donor education, MADRE has completely transformed its approach toward disability inclusion.

"MADRE understands that serving disabled women and girls is not an extra component or an extra service or a lesser priority,” said MIUSA CEO Susan Sygall, “They know that anyone who serves women and girls must inherently serve disabled women and girls." 

MADRE is one of the few organizations taking this initiative and leading by example. Though every part of the organization may not be 100% accessible yet, MADRE has concrete action plans and timelines set toward ensuring women with disabilities are fully included as beneficiaries and leaders in everything they do. MIUSA and MADRE will continue to work together to do meaningful international human rights work. It has been an honor to support MADRE on this exciting journey and we look forward to continuing our collaboration to do meaningful and intersectional human rights work globally.

Read the short or long version of our practice note, Merging Movements: Supporting Inclusive Women’s Rights Work through Innovative Partnerships, found in the Documents section. 

If your organization is interested in having a similar type of partnership or training with MIUSA, please email Project Manager Suz Dunn at sdunn [at] miusa.org