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There are more than 200 people with disabilities living in Rowa, the most populated VDC in Mugu. To ensure the rights and well-being of people living with disability in Rowa, the Disabled Rehabilitation and Rural Development Organisation (DARRDO), a local UMN partner, implemented the Karnali Quality Education Program (KQEP) from 2007 to 2009, and provided education scholarships for 180 children with disabilities in Rowa, Rugha, Shreenagar, Karkiwada, Pina and Rara VDCs. After this programme phased out in 2009, DARRDO supported in the formation of the VDC-level Rowa Disability Self-Help Group (RDSHG) to keep working for the rights of people living with disability, and to mobilise the VDC budget to support disability work in the VDC. RDSHG is the first disability self-help group formed in the Mugu.

After the formation of RDSHG, DARRDO assisted RDSHG to open a group bank account, set up a management system, establish networking with other government and non-government organisations in the district and raise support for disability work. Impressed by their work, in 2009, Rowa VDC provided NRS 65,000 (GBP 400) to RDSHG to support disability work. With the VDC funds, RDSHG conducted a disability awareness-raising programme in the community, organising a stage show and street rally on the rights and issues of people with disability.

In 2010, Rowa VDC provided NRS 75,000 (GBP 470) to RDSHG and the money was used for providing educational scholarships to 30 very poor and needy students with disabilities, who are currently continuing their school education without any difficulties. Hari Bahadur Budha, chairperson of Rowa Disability Network, says: “For the first time, school education has become a reality for students with disability from Rowa VDC. We are very thankful to DARRDO and UMN for making this a reality in the lives of poor children with disability.”

This year, Rowa VDC has set aside NRS 110,000 (GBP 685) to support disability work through RDSHG to ensure the rights and well-being of people living with disability, and end all forms of discrimination.