Rehabilitation International (RI)

RI is a global network with all important stakeholders, promoting the rights and inclusion of persons with disabilities and/or health problems, through means including advocacy, habilitation, rehabilitation to achieve an inclusive world where all people can enjoy active participation and full human rights.

Founded in 1922, Rehabilitation International (RI) is the worldwide network of people with disabilities, service providers, government agencies, academics, researchers and advocates working to improve the quality of life of people with disabilities. With member organizations in 100 countries and in all regions of the world, RI provides a forum for the exchange of experience and information on research and practice.
RI grew from its small town roots in the American Midwest in 1922 to an internationally prominent organization in just a few years. RI maintained its contacts around the world during World War II, thanks to the efforts of Bell Greve, LLD, and Dr Henry Kessler, who were determined to keep it alive. Unlike most international organizations with a large core staff at the headquarters level, the RI Secretariat in New York has never been large. Instead, the majority of the work has been carried out by RI’s member organizations.
Along the way, there have been four major name changes: The International Society for Crippled Children, 1922; The International Society for the Welfare of Cripples, 1939; The International Society for the Rehabilitation of the Disabled, 1960; and Rehabilitation International, 1972. These name changes reflected changing social awareness towards disability. At present, the organization prefers to go by the abbreviation of its 1972 name, and RI now stands for Rights and Inclusion as well.
RI and its members work to protect the rights of people with disabilities, including ensuring access to and the improvement of crucial services for persons with disabilities and their families. RI also promotes collaboration among stakeholders and advocates for strong policies and legislation in the international, regional and national levels to promote these rights.
RI maintains official relations with the United Nations (UN) and its agencies and institutions such as the World Health Organization (WHO), the International Labor Organization (ILO), UNDP, UNESCO and UNICEF among others, as well as regional bodies, service providers and universities.
RI also partners with other civil society groups, organizations of persons with disabilities and others who share similar or the same vision.
The Malaysian Council for Rehabilitation became it member since October 1985.

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