COSP8_Invitation Header

From 9-11 June 2015, one of the world’s largest international disability community gatherings is being held at UN Headquarters in New York: the 8th session of the Conference of States Parties to the CRPD. The Zero Project Team is on its way to this important event!

In the uprun of the conference, the Zero Project, UNICEF, UN DESA and the Gulf Disability Society, are co-sponsoring today’s GAATES forum on “Accessibility and Education: Challenges and Solutions”.

The forum will discuss key indicators of accessibility in the UN CPRD and of accessibility in educational environments, including the built environment, assistive devices and technologies, and accessible learning materials. Mr. Tom Butcher, Zero Project NY representative, will be joining high-level panelists, including, among others, Mr. Mukhtar Al-Shibani – GAATES President (Opening Remarks) and Mr. Gopal Mitra / Ms. Rosangela Berman Bieler – UNICEF.

If you wanna follow the event, you can do this by checking out the Live Webcast provided by Gaates. The Livestream will start at 3 pm EDT or 21:00 Uhr CEST.

Live webcast:

Graphic by ENIL — Toward Independence

Today is the Second European Independent Living day!!

ENIL invites everyone to join with an activity and to speak about Independent Living! Check out also the Zero Project Report 2015 which focused on this topic: 

On 15th April we held our first informal consultation with the experts of the CRPD Committee and received member’s inputs and advice as to where best direct our research on inclusive education. The consultation was held in Palais Wilson, from 1:45-2:45pm Geneva time and captioning was provided via:

Here you see some impressions from the day:

20150416_134804 20150416_140041 20150416_140050

On 15th April the Zero Project team was taking part in the Day of the General Discussion on the Right to Education for Persons with Disabilities of the UN CRPD Committee at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, Switzerland. Many organizations, including our partner the European Network for Independent Living (ENIL), had submitted contributions for that day. Submissions from all those who contributed can be found here.

Inclusive education will be also the research focus of the Zero Project team this year and we will be holding tomorrow our first informal consultation with the experts of the CRPD Committee in Palais Wilson in Geneva. Find out more here: INFORMAL CONSULTATION – Inclusive Education – Invitation and read our news post about it

Independent Living for All: Towards Inclusive and Sustainable Societies - Conference

On 5th March 2015, the Permanent Mission of Austria and the International Disability Alliance will hold, together with the Permanent Missions of Australia, Brazil, China, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Finland, Mexico, New Zealand, Spain and Thailand, as well as the European Network for Independent Living, supported by the Zero Project, the Essl Foundation and the World Future Council, a side event on “Independent Living for All: Towards Inclusive and Sustainable Societies”.

The aim is to discuss the challenges connected to promote independent living, to highlight Innovative Policies & Practices, and to explore ways to strengthen the work at all levels towards ‘a world without barriers’. Several high-level speakers will be providing their insights on the topic. The event will take place at the 28th session of the Human Rights Council in Palais des Nations, Geneva, and will gather representatives of Permanent Missions, international organizations and nongovernmental organizations.



H.E. Thomas HAJNOCZI, Permanent Representative of Austria to the UN in Geneva

Opening remarks:

H.E. Lenín Voltaire MORENO GARCES, UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy on Disability and Accessibility (video)

Catalina DEVANDAS, Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities


Lisa MACNAB, Down Syndrome International: What means Independent Living for me?

Nadia HADAD, European Network on Independent Living: My human rights through Independent Living?!

Frédérique WIEMEIJER, Essl Foundation & Ingrid HEINDORF, World Future Council: The Zero Project Report 2015 on Independent Living & Political Participation – Social Indicators, Innovative Practices and Policies

Closing remarks:

H.E. Thani THONGPHAKDI, Permanent Representative of Thailand to the UN in Geneva,

H.E. Regina Cordeiro DUNLOP, Permanent Representative of Brazil to the UN in Geneva, &

H.E. Yisheng REN, Minister Counsellor of China to the UN in Geneva

Refreshments will be served. Captioning will be provided.


Biographies speakers (DOC)

Flyer (PDF) (DOC)


Find some impressions from the #HRC28 on our Facebook-Page.




The International Disability Alliance (IDA), partner in the Zero Project, organised in collaboration with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) a technical meeting on Inclusive Social Protection. The meeting brought together 30 people from different areas to discuss the topic of Social Protection. One of the participants was another Zero Project partner, Light of the World. Find out more here.


Agenda Save the date-rd32014

The General Election Network for Disability Access (AGENDA) – one of our Innovative Practices this year- is a consortium of civil society organizations and disabled people’s organizations across Southeast Asia working together to improve the quality of persons with disabilities’ access to political and public life, including the right to vote and be elected.

On January 28-29th, AGENDA will host a regional dialogue to share lessons learned and good practices regarding equal access. You can view a live stream of the conference (starting at 9 AM on 28th) or you can watch the sessions after the conference on YouTube


The dates of our annual Zero Project Conference are coming closer.

This year the conference will take place from 25th until 27th February 2015, once again at the UN Vienna, Austria. More than 500 stakeholders from around the world are expected to attend. 40 Innovative Practices and Policies advancing Independent Living and Political Participation of persons with disabilities will be presented.

On our website, you can find now an updated programme as well as a speakers list – have a look here!



ACCESSIBLE TOURISM: Innovative approaches between accessibility and heritage protection_Flyer
Brussels — Fri, Dec 5th 2014, 09.00 am – 05.00 pm

Friday the fifth of December, the European Foundation Centre is organising a conference involving several experts as well as local and regional authorities’ representatives who will discuss the issue of accessible tourism dealing with the challenges of protecting the historical heritage and providing accessibility for all. The head of the Zero Project and Programme Manager of the Essl Foundation, Dr. Michael Fembek, will be providing his insights on the issue of ‘technology solutions’.

Information on the conference and registration can be found here on the EFC-Eventpage!

Header Webinar


Increasingly foundations are talking about ways to break down silos in their grant making approaches in order to step away from the single-issue approach to improve effectiveness and achieve long lasting solutions to long standing problems. The European Foundation Centre (Zero Project operating partner), along with ARIADNE, invites you to join an online discussion which will highlight how tackling disability as a cross-cutting issue can respond to the needs of persons with disabilities while producing broader, high-impact, systemic change at local, region and national level.


Join the Webinar on Nov 26, 2014 at 5-6:30 pm CET


This webinar will also offer an opportunity to launch the forthcoming publication “Breaking down grant making silos: disability as a cross-programme initiative”, a collaborative effort in the frame of Agora+D, a platform recently set up by the European Network for Corporate Social Responsibility and Disability (CSR+D), led by Fundación Once with the financial endorsement of the European Social Fund. This publication explores the intersection between disability and other funding priorities such as employment, youth, ageing, gender issues, research, environment, accessibility, culture, cooperation and development. During this one-hour webinar, representatives from the foundation world will share some of their best practices and will explain how partnering with different actors to look for creative and alternative avenues to addressing social issues such as social innovation and entrepreneurship can become a key opportunity for people with disabilities.

– Jo ANDREWS, Ariadne
– Cecilia Conde, European Network for CSR+D, on behalf of Fundación ONCE
– Michael FEMBEK, ESSL Foundation
– Brian KEARNEY-GRIEVE, the Atlantic Philanthropies
– Rana KOTAN, Sabanci Foundation

Register here:

Share our Facebook Event with friends and colleagues: