The SEMA (Strengthening Enabling Mechanisms for Accountability) project is an extension of the SASA (Strengthen Agency for Social Accountability) program that aims to build accountable and responsive governance structures and processes for people with disabilities (PWDs) in Kenya and Tanzania. The project focuses on raising awareness of inclusive governance and human rights issues, building capacity of right holders and duty bearers, and promoting community dialogues on issues of inclusive governance and PWDs rights issues.
SEMA’s first category of activities involves raising awareness of inclusive governance and human rights issues with a focus on PWDs’ rights at the local level. This includes conducting community meetings and public forums to discuss issues related to PWDs’ rights and inclusion, as well as using media channels such as radio programs and social media to disseminate information and raise awareness about these issues.
The second category of SEMA’s activities involves building the capacity of right holders (PWDs) and duty bearers (local leaders) at the local levels on PWDs issues and rights as well as inclusive leadership. This includes training sessions and workshops for PWDs and local leaders on topics such as disability rights, inclusive leadership, and effective communication and collaboration between the two groups.
The third category of SEMA’s activities involves promoting and strengthening community dialogues on issues of inclusive governance and PWDs rights issues with considerations of PWDs. This includes facilitating community dialogues and discussions on issues related to PWDs’ rights and inclusion, as well as supporting the establishment of community-based organizations that advocate for these issues.
Since its inception, SEMA has had a significant impact on the communities it serves. Through its various activities, the project has raised awareness about PWDs’ rights and inclusion, built the capacity of PWDs and local leaders, and promoted community dialogues on these issues. As a result, there has been an increase in the number of PWDs participating in decision-making processes at the local level, as well as a greater understanding and acceptance of disability rights and inclusion among community members and leaders.
In conclusion, SEMA is a vital intervention that seeks to empower communities to build accountable and responsive governance structures and processes in Kenya and Tanzania. Through its various activities, the project is making significant strides towards promoting PWDs’ rights and inclusion at the local level, and creating a more inclusive and equitable society for all.
The SEMA and SASA initiatives are organised by the AndRose Disability Organization Tanzania (ADOT), run by Rosemary Choma. ADOT started initially operating as a social enterprise originated with the view of dignifying the lives of the Most Vulnerable Persons With Disabilities (MVPWDs) in Tanzania and beyond; the lives which seem not having a voice to systematically and consistently air-out their views and to honor the challenges facing them.
See Rosemary Choma’s presentation at the YDAR 2023 festival here.
SEMA had its first major forum in July 2023.