Press Release

The UN in Turkmenistan welcomes national initiatives in the humanitarian sphere

26 December 2023

December 25, Ashgabat - A meeting was held at the Center for Public Organizations of Turkmenistan on the activities of the Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov Charitable Foundation for Assistance to Children in Need of Guardianship.

Ms. Narine Sahakyan, UNDP Resident Representative and a.i. UN Resident Coordinator in Turkmenistan also spoke at the event that brought together high representatives of the Cabinet of Ministers of Turkmenistan, deputies of the Mejlis of Turkmenistan, and heads of ministries and departments.

Ms. Sahakyan emphasized that the humanitarian activities of the Charitable Foundation over the past year have received recognition not only in Turkmenistan but also in other countries where children who face difficulties receive support. She also noted the significant mission of the Children's Health and Rehabilitation Center named after Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov in the city of Arkadag, and the feasibility of disseminating the Center’s experience throughout the country to exchange knowledge and best practices in the field of treatment and rehabilitation of children.

In connection with the activities of the Foundation for the Rehabilitation of Children with Disabilities, Ms. Sahakyan informed the participants about the priority direction for the UN system in Turkmenistan - promoting inclusivity and realizing the rights of persons with disabilities, including children.

UN agencies in Turkmenistan are actively involved in several projects for the rehabilitation of youth and children with disabilities. Work is being done to integrate persons with disabilities into society, including collecting data on people with disabilities and developing legal, vocational, and computer skills.

So, in December 2022, for the first time in several cycles of the national population census, questions about disability were included in the questionnaire, which made it possible to obtain verified statistical data on people with disabilities. The use of such disaggregated data will help develop national programs that take into account the needs of persons with disabilities.

With the assistance of the UN, an assessment of national legislation was carried out, and as a result, recommendations were presented to national partners on promoting vocational education and employment for persons with disabilities. An inclusive education strategy was also developed, and a national system of early intervention and early child development was created. Together, Turkmenistan launched a speech synthesizer in the Turkmen language for people with visual impairments, allowing them to access texts in the Turkmen language using text-to-speech technology.

Technical support was provided to the manufacturing enterprise of the Turkmen Society of the Blind and Deaf to install high-tech equipment for the production of paper products, and the Yenme Public Association was provided with assistance in establishing a vocational skills center for vulnerable youth, where young people are trained in various vocational skills. All these initiatives contribute to the realization of the rights and empowerment of persons with disabilities for their full integration into the socio-economic and public life of the country.

UN agencies have been successfully cooperating with the National Red Crescent Society of Turkmenistan (NRCS) for many years. One example is the provision of psychosocial support to patients with tuberculosis, which ensures adherence to treatment and good results of tuberculosis treatment. Support through innovative and digital technologies is planned and the UN system is grateful to partners for their openness and willingness to innovate.

At the end of her speech, Ms. Sahakyan once again emphasized the readiness of the UN system to deepen cooperation with the Government and civil society of Turkmenistan on promoting the rights and interests of persons with disabilities, including children and youth.

UN entities involved in this initiative

United Nations Resident Coordinator Office
United Nations Development Programme

Goals we are supporting through this initiative