Over the years, CBR became a popular strategy in low and mid income countries and programmes were mainly focused on physiotherapy, assistive devices, and medical or surgical interventions. Over the years, many different models of CBR emerged due to different context and socio economic realities. Like disability sector, CBR also started evolving and along with the growth in number of CBR programmes, there were changes in the way CBR was conceptualized. Besides the World Health Organization (WHO), other UN agencies, especially the ILO, UNESCO, UNICEF got involved and CBR started to become a multisectoral strategy – beyond only health intervention.

In 2003, during an international consultation while reviewing 25 years of CBR practice at Helsinki, there was an unanimous voice that as CBR is more relevant to the low and mid income countries, CBR programmes need to focus on:

• reducing poverty, given that poverty is a key determinant and outcome of disability;

• ensuring greater community involvement and ownership;

• developing and strengthening of multisectoral collaboration and

• involving disabled people’s organizations in CBR.

Sorry I don't know the exact source of this text, but it's an extract of a paper about community development and the disabled, especially about CBR(Community based Rehabilitation).

I understand what 'community involvement' is, but what does it mean by 'community ownership' here? Usually ownership is used when there's a specific individual, I mean, as in someone's ownership. But I don't get it if it's community's ownership.. I have no idea what it means here. Can anyone help me with this?

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    In the context of Community-Based Rehabilitation, I don't suppose "community ownership" is supposed to imply that the community should actually "possess" a programme (What would that even mean? Who would they "buy" it from?). It's a more metaphoric reference. Consider many written instances of We must own the problem, which usually mean We must take responsibility for [solving] the problem. Commented Sep 24, 2017 at 14:38

1 Answer 1


Ownership is here being used in an extended meaning:

The normal meaning of ownership is "having possession". In business, it is sometimes used for "Having responsibility". Managers may talk about "John having ownership of a project" (John is responsible for it) Managers may say "We all have ownership of this project" (everybody has responsibility for making the project a success"

In the context you give, I understand that CBR programmes need everyone in the community to be involved and feel responsible for the success of the programme. If the community has shared ownership, everyone will be working towards the same goal, and there will be a greater chance of success.

It might be noted that this kind of "business jargon" annoys some poeple who find it pretentious and manipulative.

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