“Being a Person”: Congress in Milan

Disability in the World: Rights, Inclusion and Rehabilitation

5th and 6th of April 2019

Milano, Centro Congressi Fondazione Cariplo, Via Romagnosi 8

The congress has been organised by AIFO in collaboration with Don Gnocchi Foundation and Ovci.

The issues discussed will be in-depth studies of the new languages and goals, which arise from the international scenario, with reference to the “Guidelines for the introduction of the disability issue within the policies and activities of the Italian Cooperation” and the OMS programme “Rehabilitation 2030”.

Click to see the programme



Alarcos Cieza, Carla Colicelli, Giampiero Griffo, J.E. Bickenbach, Johannes Trimmel, Mina Lomuscio, Mons. Zuppi, Sunil Deepak, Victoria Lee


More info at:



4th Asia-Pacific Community-Based Inclusive Development (CBID) Congress 2019

Asia-Pacific CBID Congress LOGOThe 4th Asia-Pacific Community-Based Inclusive Development (CBID) Congress 2019 will be held on 2nd-3rd July 2019 in Shangri-La hotel, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. The Congress will be the regional platform to exchange lessons learned and good practices on the economic empowerment of persons with disabilities in order to break the cycle of poverty towards sustainable social development and economic growth through CBID. It is also meant to strengthen collaboration among representatives from governments, leaders with disabilities, Disabled Peoples’ Organizations (DPOs), Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), International NonGovernment Organizations (INGOs), youth groups and service providers from Asia-Pacific countries.

More info at: http://www.apcbid2019.mn/index.html


World Leprosy Day

On the last Sunday of January, every year, Aifo and its groups in Italy together with its international partners, celebrate the World Leprosy Day (WLD). WLD was estbalished by Raoul Follereau in 1954. Aifo activities related to the WLD already start in December, linked with the World Disability Day on 3 December, and continue till February.

Last WLD was celebrated on Sunday 28January 2018.

Preparatory activities of WLD included a private audience of the Aifo groups and representatives with the Holy Pope in Vatican city, held on 6 December 2017.

A key activity for the WLD is the sale of “honey of solidarity” by the AIFO volunteers in around one hundred city squares by Aifo volunteers to raise the funds for Aifo’s activities. This is also an opportunity to raise awareness among the general public about the different themes of Aifo’s work inspired by the ideals of Raoul Follereau such as human dignity, equality of people, access to human rights and universal brotherhood.

Different groups of AIFO all over Italy organise other local activities in their own cities for fund-raising and awareness building, such as cultural programmes, meetings in schools and exhibitions.

Aifo & the World Health Organisation

AIFO is in official relationship with the World Health Organisation (WHO) and participates in the World Health Assembly in Geneva. In WHO, AIFO has especially close relations with Disability and Rehabilitation team (DAR), with which it collaborates through Joint Plans of Action.

In the image on the left you can see, Maria Alarcos Cieza from WHO/DAR with AIFO representatives – Antonio Lissoni (President of Aifo), Francesca Ortali (Head of International Project Office) and Dr Sunil Deepak, (collaborator) at the DAR office in Geneva in August 2016 to discuss the new Joint Plan of Action.

Some of the recent significant activities carried out by AIFO in collaboration with WHO/DAR included the following:

– Quality of life of elderly persons – With technical support of WHO, AIFO togehter with Municiple Government of Ponte San Niccolo (PD) in Italy and in collaboration with University of Padova, is involved in a action research on the quality of life of elderly persons, including their need for technical appliances. This project initiated in 2015 and is expected to be completed by 2018.

– Collaboration for organisation of international CBR congresses in Bangkok (2009), Abuja (2010), Manila (2011) and Agra (2012). In Bangkok, AIFO organized three pre and post congress workshops on (1) Community-based Rehabilitation (CBR) and mental health, (2) CBR and United Nations Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), and (3) CBR and Leprosy. In Manila, AIFO organized a pre-congress workshop on CBR and emancipatory research. Finally in Agra (India) in November 2012, AIFO in collaboration with WHO/DAR and other international partners, coordinated the organisation of two workshops – (1) CBR and persons with intellectual disabilities; and (2) Going beyond the taboos in CBR – (a) sexuality and reproductive rights, and (b)violence and abuse towards persons with disabilities.

– Collaboration for preparation of CBR Guidelines published in 2010. Ongoing collaboration for preparation of “Training of Trainers – online training package” and for “Monitoring and evaluation of CBR”.

– Collaboration for preparation and diffusion of first World Disability Report published in 2011.

– Conducting significant research initiatives such as the S-PARK/CBR initiative on impact of CBR and the research on violence towards persons with disabilities..

– During 2013-14, AIFO also collaborated with WHO/DAR for the development of monitoring and evaluation manual for CBR and for the development of Training of Trainers package for CBR.

More information about the work of WHO/DAR is available from their webpage (opens in a new window).

Links & Alliances of Aifo

This page presents the key alliances and partnerships of AIFO. In 2017, AIFO completed fifty-six years. In these years, AIFO has played a key role in setting up of some important international networks and federations. Apart from the networks mentioned below, AIFO also collaborates with other UN organizations, international non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and with different universities.

World Health Organisation (WHO)

AIFO is in official relation with World Health Organisation (WHO). In WHO, AIFO works closely with Disability and Rehabilitation (DAR) team and with Global Leprosy Programme. Read more about AIFO’s work in collaboration with WHO.

International Federation of Anti-leprosy Associations (ILEP)

AIFO is a founder member of ILEP that coordinates world wide work related to fight against leprosy. More informaiton about ILEP is available from its webpage.

International Disability and Development Consortium (IDDC)

AIFO is a founder member of IDDC, that brings together all the major world organisations involved in work related to disability and development. More information is available from the IDDC website.

RIDS – Italian Network on Disability & Development

RIDS, the Italian Network on Disability and Development was started in 2011. It involves four organizations, 2 non-governmental organizations (AIFO and Educaid) and 2 organizations of people with disabilities (FISH and DPI Italy).


Disabled Peoples International

AIFO has a long history of collaboration with Disabled Peoples’ International (DPI) that brings together national organisations of persons with disabilites (DPOs). Among the different DPI organisations, AIFO has a Framework agreement of collaboration with DPI Italy and with DPI of Asia Pacific region. You can read more about DPI from their website.

IDEA – International Association for Integration, Dignity and Economic Advancement

IDEA brings together the organisations of persons affected with leprosy from different parts of the world.

Amici Trust India

Amici Trust is the partner and international member of Aifo in India. Its office is based in Bangalore.

BRASA Brazil

BRASA is the partner and international member of Aifo in Brazil. Its office is based in Sao Paulo.