CANUGAN Disability Support works with the Kasese District Union of Persons with Disabilities (KADUPEDI).

Based in Ottawa, Canada, CanUgan supports people with disabilities in Kasese District of Western Uganda by holding fund raising and other events, by publishing CanUgan News, the quarterly newsletter, by establishing collaborative partnerships and by promoting its work.


Past-President and Founder
Navin Parekh

Navin Parekh has worked in developing countries for over twenty years.  In 2010, he was posted as a volunteer to work for people with disabilities in Uganda. Touched by their dire situation, he founded CanUgan to provide them with assistive devices for mobility, communication and economic empowerment. Navin has volunteered with and led a number of local, national and international organizations for over forty years. He holds B.A. and LL.B. degrees from Mumbai University, and M.B.A. from the University of Chicago. Navin is a Member of Order of Canada.

Juhli Lyncaster

Juhli Lyncaster has a strong background in volunteering and has participated in multiple programs across the country including Katimavik, WaterAid, the New Brunswick Lung Association, and the Prince Edward Island Museum and Heritage Foundation. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in anthropology and history from the University of Prince Edward Island, and a Masters in cultural anthropology from Carleton University. Originally from Vancouver, Juhli has been settled in Ottawa since 2010.

Jacqueline Tumusiime

Jacqueline Tumusiime is a federal public service employee with Health Canada and previously Statistics Canada. She brings over 20 years of employment and volunteer experience in the nonprofit sector. Jacqueline has served on various Canadian NGO committees, namely, International Coalition on AIDS and Development (ICAD), and contributed to the publication -ICAD’s Guide to Twinning for HIV/AIDS Organizations “Beyond Our Borders”. She has coordinated health awareness campaigns within immigrant communities in Toronto and Ottawa. Her passion for global humanitarian causes stretches to her birthplace- Uganda, as she continues to work towards a positive impact in the lives of the vulnerable and marginalized.

Zoe Dugal

Zoe Dugal has been working in the field of international development for the past 15 years, mostly in the area of peace and security and transitional justice, in Africa, Eastern Europe and Central Asia. She has worked for the United Nations, the German development agency and NGOs in Canada and abroad. She is currently the Deputy Director of Field Operations at CANADEM. She holds a Master degree in Political Science and International Relations from McGill University.

Chris Braeuel

Christopher Braeuel is an international development practitioner and leader with over 17 years experience in multilateral negotiations and global project management in both the public and non-profit sectors. He is currently the Executive Director for Veterinarians without Borders / Vétérinaires sans frontières Canada and previously served as Country Director for Cuso International in Nigeria. In 2010, he was First Secretary for Development with the Canadian Embassy in Kabul where he led and managed Canada’s support to Afghanistan’s education sector. Chris has also represented Canada in the United Nations as the National Focal Point, Chief Adviser and Bureau Vice-President to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification and earlier as Senior Adviser and Negotiator to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and its Kyoto Protocol.

Jack McCarthy

Jack McCarthy retired in 2016 after 27 years of service as Executive Director of the Somerset West Community Health Centre in Ottawa. During his tenure he oversaw two major capital projects and assisted in developing a range of community health programs tailored to the needs of vulnerable populations. Food security, affordable housing, support to refugees, and harm reduction programs are some of the issues that he has been passionate about over the years. His voice on healthy public policy issues has been heard at local, provincial, national and international forums.


There is a support group in Ottawa which meets monthly to plan and carry out activities including fund raising events and publication of CanUgan News, the quarterly newsletter. Members of the Support Group are:

Richard Morello

Stephen St. Denis

Sandy Davidson

Zicky Hammud

Pia Nyakairu

Marion Robinson

Juhli Lyncaster

Gordon Walker

Sara Barnoski

Some members of CanUgan’s Support Group

From Left:

Lucio Appolloni, Anny Flynn, Neelam Merchant, Muhamad Adatia, Gordon Walker, Gordon Breedyk, Navin Parekh, Chris Braeuel


KADUPEDI is a non-political, non-religious umbrella organization of people with disabilities in Kasese. It implements the project locally by overseeing manufacturing and procurement of assistive devices and by distributing the same to people with disabilities (PWDs). KADUPEDI also implements and monitors other initiatives like vocational training and emergency flood relief program.

(KADUPEDI) was founded in 1996 as a district-wide umbrella organization. As such, KADUPEDI serves grass root persons with disabilities (PWDs) through its affiliated member organizations in sub-counties, parishes and villages and through uni-disability associations like the one for the vision-impaired persons.

A distinguishing feature of KADUPEDI is that the organization is managed and run solely by PWDs, and, except for few staff members working on special projects, everyone works voluntarily.

KADUPEDI’s Executive Committee

Back row: Bwambale Alone, Secretary, Namusisi Asinah, Vice Chairperson, Ndand John, Vision-impaired Rep, Monday Rosset, Treasurer

Front row: Biira Reachel, Youth Rep, Bisogho Reachel, Other Disability Categories, Mugenyi Joshua, Chairperson, Baluku Peter, Coordinator

Seated: Kahyana Joseph, Parent Rep

Absent: Mbabughabolho Teopista, Hearing-impaired Rep

KADUPEDI’s Project Team


Treasurer : Robert Bwambale,

Team Leader : Baluku Peter

Secretary : Joseph Kahyana.

Principles that guide KADUPEDI’s Work:

  • Don’t fish for me, but teach me how to fish.
  • Nothing for us without us.
  • Disability is not inability.


  • To promote, protect and advance human rights of PWDs.


  • To advocate and lobby for securing economic, political, social, and cultural rights of PWDs.
  • To gather and manage data and information related to PWDs.
  • To coordinate and guide the activities of member organisations in the district.
  • To network and collaborate with other NGOs, CSOs and CBOs in the district pursuing similar objectives.


  • The organizational structure of KADUPEDI consists of:
  • General Assembly – 154 PWD representatives (gender and disability sensitive)
  • Executive Committee –  9 members elected at General Assembly
  • Chairperson: Mugenyi Joshua
  • Includes representatives of women, youth, blind, deaf, parents and county representatives.
    1. PWD associations: In sub-counties, parishes and villages and uni-disability associations.
    2. Secretariat – Manages and administers union’s day-to-day activities.
  • Finance and Administration Manager: Baluku B. N. Peter

KADUPDI’s Work & Accomplishments

As an umbrella organisation, KADUPEDI coordinates and guides the work of its affiliated members through a wide variety of projects. KADUPEDI also undertakes project that have district-wide relevance or those that apply to a cross-section of people with specific disabilities.

Nationally, KADUPEDI is a member of the National Union of Disabled Persons of Uganda (NUDIPU), and works closely with the Uganda National Association of the Blind (UNAB) and Uganda National Association of the Deaf (UNAD). KADUPEDI also works with international organizations like the International Republican Institute (IRI), Handicap International and Oxfam-GB.

KADUPEDI’s work is carried out at two levels: District-level and Grassroots level.

District Level Activities

Advocacy and Lobbying

The main thrust of KADUPEDI’s activities has been in advocating and lobbying on behalf of PWDs in the district.


This is an ongoing activity. KADUPEDI works with other organizations of PWDs as well as those that provide broader but related services.


KADUPEDI undertakes district-wide projects, like the Kasese District Programme to Fight Infringement of Disability Rights (2005), the Promotion of Employment Rights of PWDs and Economic Empowerment of PWDs. In the last few months, KADUPEDI has undertaken two special projects: i) HIV/AIDS project to raise awareness and provide information and tools to PWDs, and, ii) OD-Youth project to empower Youth with Disabilities (YWDs).

Organizational Support

KADUPEDI provides its expertise and organizational support to specific groups of PWDs like the hearing-impaired in forming an association of the deaf (KADIDA) and the formation of a support group for HIV-positive PWDs.

Grassroots Activities

KADUPEDI’s affiliated member associations in sub-counties and parishes carry out grassroots activities ranging from microcredit savings and loans to tree planting, and from computer training to basket weaving.