Global Forum of People's Organizations on Hansen's Disease

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The Global Forum of People’s Organizations on Hansen’s Disease brings together representatives from organizations of persons affected by Hansen’s disease, together with major stakeholders as observers, for four days of exchanges ahead of the 20th International Leprosy Congress in Manila,Philippines. We are expecting about 80 participants from more than 20 countries.

Background Information

Hansen’s disease, also known as leprosy, is a curable infectious disease treated with multidrug therapy (MDT) available free of charge worldwide. Since the introduction of MDT in the early 1980s, some 16 million persons have been treated and cured, while annual new case numbers have plateaued at around 200,000 in recent years.
Regardless of the progress made, challenges remain to breaking transmission of the disease and further reducing case numbers to achieve the goal of “zero leprosy”. Meanwhile, persons diagnosed with Hansen’s disease and their family members continue to face stigma and discrimination, which acts as a barrier to early case detection and treatment, limits their opportunities in life, and leads to social and economic exclusion.
Over the years, organizations of persons affected by Hansen’s disease have formed that are actively engaged in the struggle for an inclusive society, free from discrimination and prejudice. Both The Nippon Foundation and Sasakawa Health Foundation have been supporting a number of these organizations for more than 20 years in some cases.
But while the active participation and wider involvement of People’s Organizations in policy-making and medical and social programs is seen as crucial to making further progress against Hansen’s disease, People’s Organizations face a number of challenges in common, including a lack of organizational sustainability and capacity to enable them to achieve their long-term goals.
The purpose of the Global Forum is to discuss these and other issues important to People’s Organizations and provide delegates to the 20th International Leprosy Congress with a “people’s perspective” on Hansen’s disease issues to help sharpen efforts against the disease by all stakeholders going forward.

Objectives of the Global Forum

1. Strengthen the ability of People’s Organizations to make their voices heard.
2. Provide training to build organizational sustainability and capacity of People’s Organizations.
3. Promote networking among People’s Organizations and stakeholders.
4. Enable People’s Organizations to learn from the successes and failures of their counterparts.
5. Identify key priorities for People’s Organizations
6. Explore the role of People’s Organizations can play in Hansen’s disease services.
7. Provide ILC delegates with perspectives on the key issues that matter to People’s Organizations and to present them with a list of recommendations.

Expected Outcomes

1. Enhance the ability of People’s Organizations to make their voice heard.
2. Stronger ties between People’s Organizations and stakeholders.
3. Regional Alliance/Global Alliance of People’s Organizations
4. Take a join action on World Leprosy Day.


September 7-10, 2019 (4 days)
All the participants will attend the first day of the 20th International Leprosy Congress where the results of the Global Forum will be shared and discussed.


*Please note that more detailed program information will be available in due course with downloadable PDF.  

DAY 1: Saturday, September 7, 2019 

9:00–12:00   Opening Session

13:00–17:30 Training Workshop

DAY 2: Sunday, September 8, 2019

9:00–12:00   Human Rights Session

13:00–17:00 Sustainability Session

DAY 3: Monday, September 9, 2019

9:00–10:00   Keynote Speech by Mr. Yohei Sasakawa,
                      WHO Goodwill Ambassador for Leprosy Elimination

10:30–12:00 Public Health Session

13:00–17:00 Excursion

DAY 4: Tuesday, September 10, 2019

9:00–12:00   Discussion

13:00–15:30 Discussion on ILC Plenary Session

16:00–18:00 Discussion on ILC Official Session


Century Park Hotel Manila, Philippines
Address: 599 Ocampo St, Malate, Manila, 1004 Metro Manila, Philippines
Phone:   +63-2-528-8888

Access from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport:  20-40 min by taxi (6.4km)

Call for informal session proposal at dinner table of Global Forum

We are inviting session proposal at Global Forum dinner table on 8th and 10th September. 

Please see below for details.

Call for informal session Proposal

Participation of Observers

Participation to the Global Forum as observers is possible on request basis. 

Please apply through the link below in advance. Application deadline is August 31. 

Application Form


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