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Recent Work


Paulien Bruijn giving an online training. Sitting behind computer screen with headset on.

As a consultant I am delivering training and advice on disability inclusion. I have worked on the following assignments the last year:

Disability Inclusive Livelihood/economic empowerment:

  • Development of a of Disability Inclusive Village Savings and Loan Associations manual for CARE Ethiopia, as part of the Bridging the Gap Programme. Austrian Development Agency. 2020/2021
  • Design of a TOT training for Disability Inclusion Facilitators about inclusion in BRAC vocational training centers, as part of the Inclusive Futures Programme of Sightsavers in Bangladesh. Light for the World. 2020

Disability Inclusive Humanitarian Action:

  • Online training of Dutch Relief Alliance partners on disability inclusion in humanitarian action in Lebanon.  Dorcas Aid International 2021
  • Facilitation of an online international learning and sharing session for Dutch Relief Alliance on Disability Inclusive Humanitarian Action. DCDD/ Stichting Vluchteling. 2021
  • Online training of Dutch Relief Alliance partners on disability inclusion in humanitarian action in South Sudan – Light for the World 2020
  • Online training of Dutch Relief Alliance partners on disability inclusion in humanitarian action in Nigeria – Save the Children Netherlands 2020
  • Development of Online Training on Disability Inclusive COVID-19 Response for Light for the World Mozambique. 2020

Inclusive Health/SRHR:

  • Desk study on Disability Inclusive Universal Health Coverage for SIDA on behalf of Royal Tropical Institute. 2020
  • Co-facilitation of Online Training for Plan International Programme Partners in Myanmar about disability inclusion as part of the My Body My Future Programme. Light for the World Cambodia. 2020

Training of Trainers and Self Advocates:

  • Online TOT training for Disability Inclusive Community Development for Light for the World International. 2020
  • Online Refresher Training for Disability Inclusion Facilitators in South Sudan. Light for the World. 2020
  • Training of self-advocates to promote the rights of people with disabilities at municipality level. As part of the  “Niets over ons zonder ons” Programme of Iederin. Amersfoort & Breda/ Online training. 2019/2020

Other assignments:

  • Online Training on Inclusive and Accessible communication for EU DEVCO staff. Bridging the Gap Programme. 2020
  • Disability Inclusion Workshop for Leprosy Mission Netherlands. Apeldoorn. 2020
  • Masterclass Disability Awareness for Dutch Municipalities, during regional meeting organised by VNG/Iederin. Hoofddorp. 2019


Type of assignment: Online training on Inclusive and Accessible Communication 
Designed for: DG DEVCO and EU Delegations staff (European Commission’s Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development)
Commissioned by: Bridging the Gap
Date: May 2020

Paulien Bruijn sitting behind two computer screens while facilitating an online training from her living room

The EU funded project Bridging the Gap approached me to deliver a training for DG DEVCO in Brussels, but unfortunately COVID-19 came in between. Realising that it would take a while before physical meetings would be possible again, we decided to go for an online training instead. I reworked the origional two-day training into four online sessions of two hours. We spread the four sessions over two weeks, so the participants would have time between the sessions for homework and self study.

The following topics were covered:

Session 1: Basics of Disability Inclusion
Session 2: How to communicate with people with different impairments?
Session 3: Accessible & rightsbased communication (including digital accessibility)
Session 4: Organising accessible events & meetings

I have always been a bit sceptical about online trainings, because in webinars there is often little room for interaction. So I decided to make it as lively as possible with videos, group work, quizzes and by involving guest speaker Iris Wijnen from deafbyiris. In total 11 participants from all over the world joined the online training which was held in Zoom. The kids, pets and spouses that were walking around in the participants’ rooms added a very special flavour to this training. Despite all these understandable districations, the participants were so dedicated and engaged in the training sessions, that really impressed me! So at the end it was difficult to say good-bye to this lovely group of people!

group picture in zoom online meeting

“The training was very interactive, with quizzes and discussion rooms that made the sessions lively and participative. We looked at many different aspects of inclusive and accessible communication and everyone felt that they had learned some key tools for being more inclusive in their work or in their everyday life” Liane Riordan, Web editor at the Communication Unit of DG DEVCO

Check the website of Bridging the Gap for more info on this training.