oa African Journal of Disability - Success in the workplace : from the voice of (dis)abled to the voice of enabled : original research

Volume 3, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 2223-9170
  • E-ISSN: 2226-7220



The intention of this article is twofold; first to encourage a shift in seeing 'the disabled' not as people with disabilities but rather as people with unique abilities. Secondly, to explore ways of facilitating gainful employment for these uniquely abled people. The term disability is examined against a backdrop of definitions including the definition postulated by the International Classification of Functioning. In this article, the life experiences of a purposive sample of people with (dis)abilities who have been successful in the world of work are explored. A narrative approach gives voice to their experiences. Quotes from the participants' responses are used to illustrate the common themes that emerged relating to their experiences. These themes are resonated against a backdrop of relevant literature. If disabled people are enabled to recognize and use their unique abilities, as well as develop various self-determination skills, imagine the endless possibilities which could arise for them and society in general.

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