Original Research

Overcoming barriers for people with disabilities participating in income-generating activities: A proposed development framework

Nokuthula Tinta, Unathi Kolanisi
African Journal of Disability | Vol 12 | a1133 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ajod.v12i0.1133 | © 2023 Nokuthula Tinta, Unathi Kolanisi | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 08 September 2022 | Published: 20 March 2023

About the author(s)

Nokuthula Tinta, Department of Sustainable Food Systems and Development, Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa
Unathi Kolanisi, Department of Consumer Sciences, Faculty of Science, Agriculture and Engineering, University of Zululand, Richards Bay, South Africa


Background: People with disabilities in sheltered workshops are disempowered and face many barriers, adversely affecting their income-generating activities and weakening their competitiveness in the labour market. There is limited evidence on how to overcome these barriers.

Objectives: This paper seeks to propose a framework to overcome the barriers experienced by people with disabilities participating in income-generating activities in a sheltered workshop.

Method: The qualitative exploratory single case study was done with observations and semi-structured interviews as data collection methods. Purposive sampling was used to select 24 participants between ages 22 and 52 years, and content analysis was done of transcribed interviews. Community-based rehabilitation (CBR) guidelines were used to develop the framework.

Results: A proposed framework was developed that outlined intervention strategies to address the barriers experienced by sheltered workshop participants to promote increased participation of people with disabilities in income-generation activities, thereby improving their quality of life.

Conclusion: The participation of people with disabilities in income-generating activities is hindered by several barriers. However, the proposed framework overcomes the barriers to effective participation in income-generating activities.

Contribution: People with disabilities will benefit from this framework as it will address their challenges and needs for empowerment. It would also inform stakeholders involved about these challenges and strategies.


people with disabilities; barriers; income-generating activities; sheltered workshop; intervention strategies; effective participation; framework.

Sustainable Development Goal

Goal 1: No poverty


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