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A focus on global health and rehabilitation

Queen’s International Centre for the Advancement of Community Based Rehabilitation (ICACBR) hosts first tri-university conference on global health and rehabilitation.

[Conference Executive Committee]
Some of the members of the conference’s Executive Committee, formed by members of Queen’s University, the University of Toronto, and McGill University. (Photo credit: Atul Jaiswal)

The first global health and rehabilitation conference run collaboratively between Queen’s University, the University of Toronto, and McGill University took place this weekend at Queen’s.

Scholars from the three participating universities and beyond came together for the Future Leaders in Global Health and Rehabilitation Conference 2018. They tackled global topics such as human rights, equity promotion, and global health research competencies.

“This is a first of its kind collaboration between the three disability- and rehabilitation-focused research centres, and may act as a stepping stone for larger engagement among students and faculty in global health research,” says Heather Aldersey, Director of the International Centre for the Advancement of Community-Based Rehabilitation (ICACBR) in the School of Rehabilitation Therapy. “Giving students and junior scholars a chance to connect with others interested in this field is a fantastic opportunity for them to share, learn and grow, and we were happy to host the first conference at Queen’s.”

The three centres that organized in the conferences included ICACBR, the International Centre for Disability and Rehabilitation at the University of Toronto, and the Global Health and Rehabilitation Initiative (GHRI) at McGill University. Community engagement funding from the Queen Elizabeth Scholars program supported the event. Many of the executive organizing committee members were Queen Elizabeth Scholars from low- and middle-income countries.

Students from disciplines such as law, engineering, social work, and geography joined health and rehabilitation students to discuss how to build capacity for global health research competencies, share the activities underway at each centre, and plan for future collaborations.

“This tri-university event provided a wonderful opportunity for the ICACBR to share how and what it has contributed to the developing and developed world in the global health and rehabilitation field,” says Atul Jaiswal, Executive Committee Member for the conference and doctoral candidate with the School of Rehabilitation Therapy. “Bringing three leading centres on this discipline together creates opportunities to collaborate and do much more than one centre can do on its own.”

The ICACBR began in 1991 with a mandate to advance the development of community-based rehabilitation (CBR) internationally. Since then, Queen’s has spearheaded CBR, disability, and global health initiatives in over 15 countries in Central and South America, Central and Eastern Europe, Africa, and the Asia-Pacific Region.

To learn more about ICACBR and their work within the School of Rehabilitation at Queen’s, visit their website.