Institutional Development Program

African students working with a brailler.

6th Africa Forum

The Institutional Development Program (IDP), development partners and the Local Host Committee are pleased to announce the 6th Africa Forum to be held at the Speke Resort Munyonyo in Kampala, Uganda, from Oct. 4-8, 2015. The forum's theme is Beyond 2015: Delivering On The Agenda For Persons With Visual Impairment In Africa.

About the Institutional Development Program

Changing what it means to be blind and/or visually impaired in Africa.

The Institutional Development Program (IDP) works to expand the capacity of organizations of and for the blind in Africa to advocate for opportunities for improved policies and equal participation for people who are blind and visually impaired. For individuals, the IDP builds personal confidence and enables people who are blind to seek a life of independence, productivity and self-determination.

For organizations, the IDP strengthens the operational capacity of agencies providing and/or advocating for services to people who are blind or partially sighted through training, technical support, consultancy and mentoring to partner organizations.

The IDP was founded in 1991 by Perkins International and Sight Savers International to support the work of the World Blind Union (WBU) and the African Union of the Blind (AFUB). The IDP is managed by an international team led by Perkins International. It is supported by a senior manager from Sight Savers International and a team of consultants and trainers, all of whom are Africans. The IDP is led by and recruits trainers who are blind and partially sighted.

The Need for the IDP

In Africa, more than 20 million people who are blind and partially sighted are in need of services. Organizations of people who are blind are developed as entities to advocate for opportunities for citizenship and equal participation for people who are blind and partially sighted.

Every member country of the African Union has an organization of people who are blind in need of capacity building and service models. Women, girls, and children and youth with visual disabilities are among the most underprivileged people in Africa.

Our Values

The philosophy of the IDP is grounded in a belief in the empowerment of the individual. The program works to empower people who are blind and partially sighted to participate fully in their communities by strengthening the capacity of organizations of and for the blind.

We do this by:

  • Developing leadership skills at national and community levels
  • Building democratic systems that are operated and managed transparently by participating organizations
  • Strengthening the capacity of partner organizations to provide a range of services for blind people
  • Facilitating access to services
  • Building individual and group capacity to advocate for their rights as members of society in general and their home community in particular