Four young Cambodians with disabilities have journeyed to the UAE to partake in the Global IT Challenge for Youth with Disability 2023 (GITC) held in Abu Dhabi October 23–29.

The Ministry of Social Affairs, Veterans, and Youth Rehabilitation stated on October 23 that this information and communications technology (ICT) event includes 18 participating countries competing in in-person and virtual segments covering an array of ITC skills.

This year’s GITC sees participants hailing from Cambodia, the UAE, South Korea, Pakistan, Egypt, Nepal, Mongolia, Kenya, Ethiopia, Bangladesh, China, India, Vietnam, Thailand, the Philippines, Malaysia, Laos and Indonesia.

In addition to in-person competitions in the UAE, the social affairs ministry stated that 19 young individuals will participate in online contests directly from Cambodia on October 25–27. The ministry also extended an appeal to the public to support these young individuals with disabilities in their pursuit of success for the nation’s pride.

The ministry added that the Cambodian delegation will engage in the Inclusive and Innovation Forum held in conjunction with the GITC 2023. The forum’s purpose is to assess GITC’s accomplishments and explore policies and support for the capacity development of young individuals with disabilities in the field of information and communications technology.

The GITC 2023 boasts a total of 536 participants, consisting of 461 young individuals with disabilities. Among them, 95 are participating in in-person competitions, while 366 are engaged in simultaneous online events.

Concerning the involvement of young individuals with disabilities in Cambodia, Chhor Bunnaroath, the programme manager of the Cambodian Disabled People’s Organisation (CDPO), stated on October 23 that he applauds the ministry’s commitment to promoting the rights of people with disabilities. He noted that individuals with disabilities possess intellectual and technical talents and skills akin to those of able-bodied individuals.

“It is commendable that our young individuals with disabilities have the chance to compete on a global stage, demonstrating their capabilities. It is an honour for our nation to exemplify that Cambodia inclusively supports all its citizens,” he said.

He said that the chance to compete in GITC 2023 also signifies the ministry’s role in promoting active participation of individuals with disabilities in social engagements. While people with disabilities have previously engaged in sports competitions with other nations, their participation remains a source of great pride for the Kingdom.