Opportunity for International Cooperation to Advance Disability Rights

The Global Disability Rights Library (GDRL) is inviting human rights, poverty reduction and humanitarian organizations to join a global effort to collect and disseminate disability-related information to those who lack digital access. Organizations need not have a primary focus on disability to participate.

The goal of the GDRL project is to bring disability rights knowledge to grassroots advocates and policymakers beyond the reach of the Internet. The project is currently collecting resources and identifying 60 locations in developing countries with limited web access to receive a free, offline copy of the digital library. The GDRL is a joint initiative of the U.S. International Council on Disabilities (USICD) and the WiderNet Project at University of Iowa (with funding support from the U.S. Agency for International Development).

The project uses an innovative, offline digital storage technology called eGranary units to deliver the library — like having a slice of the Internet inside a box. An online version of the library will also be available.

Organizations and people who would like to contribute to this crucial effort can help in the following ways:

  1. Suggest or contribute digital content. The GDRL needs all languages and digital formats, especially accessible formats. This includes both disability-focused and mainstream content on human rights, poverty and humanitarian issues, capacity-building for grassroots organizations and accessibility software.
  2. Identify potential deployment sites in developing countries. Share information about the GDRL with contacts and help them apply. Applications are due by September 1, 2011.
  3. Offer, coordinate or host volunteer support in building the digital library. A network of volunteers and interns around the world are helping to identify important content for the library daily.

For more information about this project or to receive the notice in a different language (six translations are available), please visit the GDRL website at: www.usicd.org. Learn more about the type of content the project is seeking, the application process and more ways to help the GDRL project at the Frequently Asked Questions page: www.usicd.org/index.cfm/gdrl-faq .

The online application form is at www.widernet.org .

Contact the GDRL team via gdrl@usicd.org or via postal mail at:
Global Disability Rights Library
U.S. International Council on Disabilities (USICD)
1012 14th Street, NW, Suite 105
Washington, D.C. 20005 USA