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The Institute for Community Inclusion to Partner with the Duskin Ainowa Foundation in Japan


Boston, MA: The Institute for Community Inclusion (ICI) at UMass Boston is partnering with the Duskin Ainowa Foundation in Japan to launch a five-month intensive disability leadership training program for Japanese people with disabilities, ages 18–35.

Starting in August 2014, the ICI will welcome the first cohort of Duskin trainees in Boston. Trainees will participate in an intensive leadership experience, improving their English language proficiency, acquiring knowledge and skills in disability studies, and developing their advocacy skills. Trainees will also intern with a disability-focused government agency or community organization.

This leadership training program is one of the most prestigious programs of its kind in Japan, and has been in existence for over 30 years. The program previously provided individual fellowships funding Japanese people with disabilities to go abroad to gain disability leadership and advocacy skills. Starting next year, the program will be using a new group or cohort model to further participants’ disability leadership and advocacy training.

Through this intensive program, Japan’s disability leadership capacity will increase. The partnership will create a new generation of leaders who will become mentors to the next cohort of Duskin trainees, as well as to other Japanese people with disabilities.

The Duskin Ainowa Foundation has been promoting the full inclusion of persons with disabilities in society since 1981. It primarily funds activities and programs that help build disability leadership capacity in Japan.

For more information, please contact program director Dr. Heike Boeltzig-Brown at heike.boeltzig@umb.edu.

ICI: promoting inclusion for people with disabilities