Woman working with her baby on the back

The primary target group of iSAVE is women, men and youth with disabilities, as well as their family. iSAVE ensures that all disability categories and persons with severe impairments are included, such as hearing, visual and mental health impairments as well as multiple impairments.

To secure large-scale, sustained participation, priority is given to females and youth with disabilities. During implementation, persons with disabilities are encouraged to be at the forefront to champion all the processes and increase their ownership.

iSAVE also targets caretakers in the savings and credit groups. To ensure effective and sustained participation of persons with disabilities, it is important to include the caregivers since some disabilities require the assistance of a non-disabled. For instance, blind members may need a guide, members with physical impairments may need a helper to push their wheel chair/tri-cycle, while those with hearing impairment may need a local interpreter to keep abreast throughout the training and group transactions. In addition, parents and relatives of persons with disabilities are empowered to support their family member(s) with a disability not only with food, but also with education and proper health care. This will enable the person with a disability and their family member to have a better life. This also strengthens the community.

The savings and credit groups also include non-disabled community members. Only through interaction can community members learn to know each other rather than fear what they do not know or understand. Having a disability places an individual within the world’s largest minority group, which in many countries experiences stigma and discrimination. To eradicate this stigma, persons with disabilities must be included in the social and economic activities of their local communities, as well as in the mind-sets of development organizations and donors.