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HI has been working in China for more than 16 years, in particular in poor and rural areas. The organisation promotes the inclusion of the most vulnerable groups in society.

A rehabilitation session, Humanity & Inclusion China

A rehabilitation session, Humanity & Inclusion China | © E. Mogster / HI

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When major natural disasters such as earthquakes or extensive flooding occur in China, HI offers emergency relief assistance to victims. Its first relief efforts were rolled out in the provinces of Guangxi, Heilongjiang, and Inner Mongolia between 1998 and 2000, then in Sichuan, which was hit by earthquakes in 2008 and 2013, and also in Yunnan in August 2014.

HI helps improve policies and practices on poverty reduction and the social inclusion of people with disabilities in rural China, particularly in Shaanxi province.

Moreover, the organisation encourages civil society organisations to make their voices heard and to advance the rights of vulnerable people, so they play an active role in society.

With its partner PEER, HI works to achieve the objectives of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which is intended to protect the full and equal access rights of people with disabilities.

HI also ensures the dignity and basic freedoms and advances the rights of people with mental impairments including through training on psychosocial support for civil society teams and advocacy.

Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, HI has continued to help the world’s most vulnerable people. We have adapted our interventions in more than 45 countries.

Areas of intervention

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Handicap International in Tibet: an operation spanning 15 years
© Handicap International

Handicap International in Tibet: an operation spanning 15 years

Handicap International began working in the Tibet Autonomous Region - where its many projects were designed to promote the social inclusion of people with disabilities - in 2000. In mid-2015, the organisation withdrew from the region and entrusted the follow-up of its projects to its former local partner, the Tibet Disabled Persons' Federation.


Map of Humanity & Inclusion's interventions in China

China is currently the world’s most populated country with 1.3 billion inhabitants. There are more than 85 million people with disabilities[1], most of whom live in extremely precarious conditions.

[1] Communiqué on major statistics of the second China national sample survey on disability. Beijing: Leading Group of the Second China National Sample Survey on Disability & National Bureau of Statistics of the People’s Republic of China; 2006.

According to the latest national disability survey[1], the mean annual income of people with disabilities in China is more than 50% below the national average. Only a third of people with disabilities requiring functional rehabilitation services have access to this care, and only a fifth of people who need mobility aids – prostheses, wheelchair, braces, etc. – have access to them. Schools and workplaces are also difficult to access for people with disabilities.

Though the country has modernised, its rapid development has been accompanied by the emergence of new disparities. One of the most worrying consequences is the growing inequality between the poor regions in China’s interior and the rich provinces to the east and south. Many people also live in poverty in the west of the country. People with disabilities in these regions are highly vulnerable.

Furthermore, China is prone to major natural disasters and its provinces are frequently affected by major earthquakes and widespread flooding.

Number of HI staff members: 14

Date the programme opened: 2000


[1] Conducted in 2006.

Where we work