THISABILITY Newspaper was formed as a nonprofit organisation (NPO) in 2011 for the disability community at large, the public and private sectors to communicate better. The Newspaper is primarily in English and is available in print and electronic form.
Many initiatives are available to people with disabilities. But this information does not have any penetration in the urban areas and never got close to getting out into the rural areas.
The Newspaper and website strives to assist the families of people with disabilities and their caregivers. Articles from professionals in a wide variety of fields and advertisers of supplies and services all advertising in the paper and website.
Principal aim: To educate, inform and empower people with disabilities through information dissemination.
Goals and Objectives:
- Create awareness of disabilities;
- Improve people’s perceptions of people with disabilities;
- Alter people’s perceptions so they see a person’s abilities and what they can do rather than what they cannot do;
- Create a central database that can assist anyone needing information on disability societies, schools, support groups, etc.;
- Create a comprehensive guide of suppliers of medical services, medical personnel, disability services and equipment in South Africa;
- Advertise jobs availability and offer solid advice on career guidance;
- Assist companies offering sponsorships and bursary schemes to find suitable candidates; and
- Showcase government initiatives that aim to assist people with disabilities improve their level of education, job skills and emotional and physical wellbeing.
The Business Opportunity
To publish and distribute a relevant disability specific newspaper. The first issues have proved popular and have attracted interest from Learners with Special Educational Needs (LSEN) schools, disability organisations, corporates and the government at large. The Newspaper is issued free to all of the above targets throughout the country combined with an electronic copy that’s supported by the website.
There is no market competition since the paper is the first of its kind and is target specific. Advertisers perceive that they realised value from advertising in the first 10 issues. Advertising is expected to grow and cover part of the production and distribution costs plus allied projects that the paper partners with. The National Departments of Communications, Women, Children and People with Disabilities and the eThekwini Municipality have responded favourably to support the initiative with various strategic partnerships still under discussion.
Parents, teachers, professionals and school principals support the concept and initiative. THISABILITY Newspaper aims to solicit the support of the Department of Health, Social Development and various provincial and national Offices of the Status of People with Disabilities (OSPD) in respect of the various disability specific initiatives, policy framework and events. The Newspaper aims to establish a strategic alliance with the Department of Education and various Provinces so as to spread wider in reach.
Over the past year or so, THISABILITY Newspaper has managed to form partnerships and alliances with the following organisations which it has publicity platform for all their programmes:
- South African Disability Alliance (SADA) is the largest disability organisation with all the major 13 individual disability organisation across the disability spectrum;
- Partnerships with some provincial and national governmental departments for various projects;
- Representation of the Newspaper on the Miss Deaf Pageant steering committee, KZN Cerebral Palsy, KZN Financial Literacy and media partnership at the Airports Companies of South Africa;
- Disability Conference and the Retirement Expo;
- Database of provincial LSEN schools;
- Database of disability organisations;
- Advertisements of posts from corporates and government;
- Media participation in national government programmes;
- Invitation to disability organisations World Congresses held in South Africa; The Down Syndrome Congress, Cape Town, The World Deaf Congress, Durban, the Disabled People’s Organisation, The Cerebral Conference, Johannesburg, The Autism Conference, Pretoria, etc.;
- Presence in all nine provinces;
- Different columnists headlining THISABILITY Newspaper’s pages;
- Partnership with SA FM-Disability Report aired every first Tuesday of the month;
- Future partnerships with radio stations: Ukhozi FM and Lotus FM;
- Radio and TV interviews with Ukhozi FM, Radio2000, SHIFT on SABC TV, Radio Today and SA FM;
- Community Impact;
- Calls to THISABILITY Newspaper desk for information and advice;
- Calls for partnerships from corporates, civic organisations and other NPOs;
- Rotary Clubs and various foundations’ interest;
- LSEN schools participation;
- Hospitals (rehabilitation centres) interest;
- Redistribution of second hand computers from corporates to schools and other NPOs.
To view THISABILITY Newspaper in the Prodder NGO Directory, click here.