Community Participation or Community Exclusion? The Distant Voices from Women with Physical Disabilities in Rural Northern Thailand
Participation is the buzzword in rural development these days; many countries have adopted it to get people together. Community participation is a great idea in rural development, but it does really beg a question of how people with disabilities are included. Therefore, this study attempts to analyze the interplay between community participation and social exclusion felt by women with physical disabilities. Forty physically disabled women were interviewed and studied. Based on in-depth interviews, it was found that the more these women participate in community activities, the more they become excluded from able-bodied community because able-bodied people within community usually regard these women as beneficiaries rather than community stakeholders. In addition, it obviously shows that unfriendly community facilities during participation process, charity-based approach and over protection are significant factors which exclude these women from normal community participation.
Keywords: Community Participation, Public Participation, People with Disabilities, Women with Physical Disabilities
Ph.D Student, Asian Institute of Technology, Silpakorn University