INCLUSIVE EDUCATION IN GUINEE-BISSAU
Guinea-Bissau is one of the poorest countries in the world, where 70% of the population live below the
poverty line. The country's needs are immense: Guinea-Bissau has high levels of maternal and infant
mortality, the health services are very under-developed and under-staffed, and the personnel often have
little training. There is a similar landscape in education, where the indicators are alarmingly low: only one
out of every two children will complete basic primary education. Furthermore, half of the population over
15 years old is illiterate according to the 2015 World Bank MICS (Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey).
Beyond these statistics, the education system in Guinea-Bissau is in a critical situation: the financial
resources are dire, and the percentage of the countrie's budget assigned to education is one of the
lowest in Africa, according to UNESCO.
In this context, the project APPEHL (Promotion of children with disabilities participation through education)
increases access for children with disabilities to attend school. There are 14 schools in Bissau capital city
and 12 schools in Oio Region that participate on this programme. Since APPEHL started in 2015, 960 children
with disabilities in Bissau and 333 children in the Oio region have benefited from it. The project for inclusive
education in Guinea-Bissau was implemented by the NGO Humanity & Inclusion (formerly Handicap Inter-
national) in partnership with the Ministry of National Education and FADPD-GB (Federação das Associações
de Defesa e Promoção dos Direitos das Pessoas com Deficiência). Funded by EU, UNICEF, French Development
Agency and EAC (Educate a Child), this project promotes the universal access to education as well as the rights
of persons with disabilities in Guinea-Bissau.
This series of pictures shows the great impact this project has had on some of the children who benefited
from the first Inclusive Education programme ever implemented in Guinea-Bissau.