People with Disabilities


Engaging People with Disabilities

Building an inclusive environment where diverse volunteers can feel welcome and able to utilize their skills is essential for all non-profits. However, persons with disabilities are often underrepresented in volunteer activities. Many people with disabilities experience physical and attitudinal barriers in their daily activities. These same barriers may result in skilled and enthusiastic volunteers with disabilities choosing not to volunteer.

It is important that we remove barriers to participation in all aspects of society, especially in emotionally rewarding activities such as volunteering. Volunteering opportunities are particularly important for people with disabilities and other populations that experience barriers because they can alleviate social exclusion. Volunteering also allows individuals who may require assistance or supports for some of their daily activities to be in a position of helping others and develop a greater sense of self-efficacy.

Making your organization inclusive may require changes in recruitment, training, task development, volunteer support, environment, policies and procedures.  Many of these changes are inexpensive to implement and there are a variety of resources already developed to help your organization.