What is Making it Work?

A rights-based approach to improve the lives of persons with disabilities

 Boy with albinism

The Making It Work (MIW) initiative uses a rights-based approach aiming at generating lasting improvements in the lives of persons with disabilities, in line with the principles of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

This initiative is based on identifying effective or innovative practices as evidence of achieving positive changes in the lives of persons with disabilities, whether from grass-roots level initiatives or regional-level activities, and analyzing how they could be sustained or replicated.

At the heart of this process, personswith disabilities are validating what works and using the evidence-based good practices to strengthen their advocacy to influence social change.

The methodology uses a multi-stakeholder approach, building alliances and collaboration around disability inclusion issues. MIW puts an emphasis on a “learning by doing” process that empowers groups to work collectively to document and promote change.  

Rather than focusing on human rights violations and what is not working, MIW shifts attention to what has worked and how it could be replicated or ‘scaled up’ putting forth constructive, practical recommendations to decision-makers, service providers and other development stakeholders.

Why use the Making It Work approach?

People around a table discussing the best way to implemment Making It Work

The MIW approach is relevant to any organizations working on disability inclusion and wanting to:    

• More effectively document examples of good practice to better understand what worked and why

• Learn from other people’s experiences and expertise and incorporate a more holistic perspective that values multiple points of view (people with disabilities, academics, practitioners, etc)

• Benefit from collaborating with other stakeholders in order to facilitate alliance-building around disability inclusion issues

• Get additional validation for what your organization believes is good practice by using a multi-stakeholder perspective in which persons with disabilities play a central role

• Optimize the outcomes of your inclusive development work by using good practices to advocate for replication or scaling-up, and for contributing to the implementation of the SDGs

• Get practical guidance from the Making It Work coordination team to strategize on how Making It Work could best contribute to your work and strengthen advocacy

• Contribute to a global level initiative to document evidence of what works and what’s possible to ensure persons with disabilities can exercise their human rights and be included in development work


If you are interested in using this initiative, you can read more about the technical aspects of the methodology, and contact us directly to discuss your project!