The effect of the disability fund on individual livelihoods: a case study of persons with disabilities in the Atwima Nwabiagya District of the Ashanti Region of Ghana

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This study seeks to explore the effect of the Disability Fund on Persons with Disabilities in the Atwima Nwabiagya District of the Ashanti Region of Ghana. Particularly, the study accesses the effects of the Disability Fund on the lives of physically challenged, visually and hearing impaired, evaluates how the Disability Fund was managed and investigates the challenges associated with the management of the fund at the District Assembly level. The study uses quantitative method of analysis where a sample of 212 respondents was obtained using a register of Persons with Disabilities (PWDs), a random selection of respondents at meetings of the Disabled Persons Organisations (DPOs) and also questionnaires and interviews. Statistical Package for Service Solution (SPSS) was employed to analyse the data. From the data, majority of the respondents (71.3%) agreed that the fund was useful for their livelihoods. The study findings show that for effective utilization of the fund, the National Council for Persons with Disabilities (NCPD) in collaboration with the Ghana Federation for the Disabled (GFD) under the authority of the Minister for Employment and Social Welfare, in cooperation with the District Assembly Common Fund (DACF) and with the approval of the Minister for Local Government and Rural Development, provides guidelines on the disbursement and management of the Fund to Persons With Disability. The research points out that out of five member management team, only one person is disabled. The study recommends that, the PWDs must be given more representation of about 60% in the management team. They should be given the opportunity to make an input into how the Disability fund should be managed. In an attempt to bring all PWDs on board, it is further recommended that every PWD must be registered with a group in order to assess the fund. In conclusion, disability in the district is prevalent among female respondents and rural areas in the district. The disability fund affects respondents in several ways as it supports them in providing basic needs for themselves and their dependants. Even though the disability fund supports disabled persons who participated in the study, key challenges exist and need urgent attention.  
A thesis submitted to the Department of Community Health, School of Medical Sciences, College of Health Sciences, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science Disability Rehabilitation and Development.