Number of national staff: 8 (provided by the KFPD and the Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs)
Number of international staff: 3 (two full-time and one for six months)
Principal donors: Dutch Embassy, DGD, EU NSA, EU Special Measures, SIDA.
Handicap International began operating in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPR Korea) in 1998 at the request of the Korean Federation for the Protection of Persons with Disabilities (KFPD). Among the various projects implemented is the orthopaedic workshop support project in Hamhung, with the introduction of the use of polypropylene for making orthopaedic devices. Since 2004, the KFPD and Handicap International have also cooperated in the field of sensory disability. After almost ten years working alongside the KFPD, Handicap International's role has been reduced to providing institutional support, with the organisation gradually withdrawing from direct implementation of projects. In 2005, with humanitarian projects now coming under the European Union Programme Support (EUPS) system, the North Korean government announced that the country no longer needed international aid. Handicap International was able to continue its activities through Unit 7, a structure under the supervision of the EUPS, and to maintain the relationship established with the KFPD.
Looking to the future, the partnership between Handicap International and KFPD should continue until 2013. One challenge will be to ensure the KFPD’s financial sustainability. Handicap International would also like to give greater visibility to the issue of disability and to ensure that this subject is incorporated into national policies.