HI works in Cuba to make society more inclusive for people with disabilities. The association also works on including people with disabilities in disaster risk reduction, as Cuba is very exposed to natural disasters, such as hurricanes and earthquakes.
A show organised as part of the community-based rehabilitation project | © Marta Burgaya / HI
Actions in process
HI has been implementing a range of functional rehabilitation projects, using local community resources and developing models implemented by local actors.
The organisation helps people with disabilities to obtain adapted employment, with a special focus on women and youth, whilst strengthening existing vocational training structures in collaboration with state services and civil society organisations. HI empowers people with disabilities to participate in the socio-economic development of Cuba.
The organisation also works with the local authorities and civil society actors on disaster risk reduction and resilience strategies, taking people with disabilities into account in the responses developed.
Situation of the country
In Cuba, the largest country in the Caribbean, the most vulnerable people, and people with disabilities in particular, find it difficult to access healthcare and employment.
The Republic of Cuba is the largest country in the Caribbean. It has a population of 11 million people. The United States continue to impose a commercial, economic, and financial embargo against Cuba. Although people with disabilities receive free medical care, the lack of transport and of modern, specialist equipment (such as hearing tests) limit this access to healthcare. The Covid-19 crisis has worsened the situation, depriving the country from one of its main resources: tourism.
People with disabilities are particularly vulnerable when natural disasters occur, in particular hurricanes such as hurricane Matthew, which hit the east of Cuba in October 2016, affecting 300,000 people.
Number of HI staff members: 9
Date the programme opened: 1998