Odisha Govt Inks MoU With Sightsavers To Create Livelihood & Job Opportunities For Persons With Disabilities

**Bhubaneswar: ** For the socio-economic development of persons with disabilities (PWDs) and also their inclusive eye health services, Odisha Government’s Department of Social Security & Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (SSEPD) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) today with international development organization ‘Sightsavers’ in presence of SSEPD Minister Prafulla Samal.

The MoU was signed by SSEPD Director Kailash Chandra Sahoo and Sightsavers India CEO R.N. Mohanty.

The agreement aims to promote socio-economic development of PWDs and inclusive eye health services for vulnerable population in 13 districts of the State.

As part of the MoU, Sightsavers will provide technical support to the SSEPD Department in facilitating inclusion of persons with disabilities in matters related to private sector employment, skill development and developing sustainable livelihood models for PWDs in the state.

Sightsavers will work with SSEPD Department and other government agencies like Odisha Livelihood Mission (OLM), Vocational Rehabilitation Centre (VRC), Odisha Rural Development and Marketing Society (ORMAS), etc, to create livelihood and employability opportunities for PWDs in the state.

The partnership will benefit more than 3 lakh youths with disabilities in the state and will develop model inclusive panchayats responsible for PWDS, a press note stated.

It also stated that, Sightsavers will also work on strengthening the Disabled People’s Organisations and their networks in the state by building their knowledge and awareness around disability rights, policies, acts, rules, entitlements, etc, enabling them to work as facilitators at panchayats/block/district level championing the cause of PWDs.

The programme will also make inclusive health service available for vulnerable population like the widows, transgenders, old-age population, etc, including the PWDs in 13 districts of the state namely Dhenkanal, Kalahandi, Bargarh, Kandhamal, Angul, Mayurbhanj, Keonjhar, Debagarh, Khordha, Cuttack, Rayagada, Ganjam and Gajapati, the press note informed further.

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