Next steps

In the years to come our focus will be on collaborations with governments and social organizations striving for the following:

  • Improvements in the quality of the fight against leprosy
  • Innovative breakthroughs in prevention of leprosy and early diagnosis
  • Strengthening the inclusion of people with disabilities in all areas of social life

Local solutions and international knowledge

NLR 2020

In the change project ‘NLR 2020’, we are working towards converting our regional offices into strong, independent local NGOs that collaborate with NLR in an international network. This should help them generate increasing local involvement and direct funding (from governments, institutional donors and companies) at both local and international levels. Within the network we will continue to work with each other on information and expertise exchange, increasing the effectiveness of our programs, and research and innovation.

Risk analysis and control

We need to continue to raise sufficient financial support. In 2015 we invested in training our regional offices to improve their institutional fundraising. Based on an operational audit, we carried out quality improvements via our regional offices in India and Brazil. In 2016 a great deal of attention will be focused on the greatest risks attached to our work: a shortage of funds and staff security.

Lobbying and advocacy

Our lobbying and advocacy is geared to keeping the interests of people affected by leprosy and persons with disabilities high on the agenda of governments and other stakeholders. In 2015 several successes were reported. In Indonesia a successful lobby by a local Disabled People’s Organization (DPO) in Tegal District made the district government agree to improve access to government buildings for people with disabilities. In Mozambique the government has re-appointed a National Coordinator on Leprosy. In the Netherlands, together with the other members of the Dutch Coalition on Disability and Development (DCDD), we successfully lobbied for more attention to be paid in development policy to the implications of the approaching ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with a Handicap (UNCRPD). In 2016 we will continue to actively advocate for the removal of barriers that prevent persons with disabilities from fully participating in development and aid projects and in society as a whole.

Looking ahead

We are convinced that our dream will become reality someday:

  • Early diagnosis and treatment and the prevention of leprosy will have the result that the disease will no longer cause disabilities.
  • By strengthening persons with disabilities and their organizations, there will no longer be exclusion and barriers to their full participation in society.


NLR and its partners will strive to realise Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 3: in 2030 the number of people needing treatment and support due to neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) will be reduced by 90%.

NLR’s priorities

In the coming years NLR will primarily focus on the following:

  • The application of important breakthroughs in battling leprosy – such as chemoprophylaxis – in leprosy programs in all endemic countries.
  • Promoting the financing of research within de Leprosy Research Initiative (LRI).
  • The development of joint projects with organizations and programs aimed at neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) and other disabling diseases.
  • Achieving independence for our regional offices to increase local involvement and attract funding from local and international sources.
  • The conversion of our international organization into an inspiring network of independant, locally based NGOs that share a common vision, learn from one another and work together on new breakthroughs.
  • The strengthening of collaborative partnerships and networks such as the International Federation of Anti-Leprosy Associations (ILEP), the Dutch Coalition on Disability and Development (DCDD), The Neglected Tropical Disease Non-governmental Development Organization Network (NNN) and their influence on policy and programs at all levels.
  • The inclusion of persons affected by leprosy in general Disabled People’s Organizations (DPOs).
  • The empowerment of persons with disabilities to enable their full inclusion in society.


NLR has, from its start in 1967, been able to count on the loyal support of donors. In the coming 5 years, this support will be an essential basis for our efforts to strive for a world in which the battle against leprosy has ensured that the disease no longer destroys lives by causing disabilities. We will work towards this in the coming years by supplementing these funds with those raised by our independent regional offices from international donors and local governments, donor organizations and companies.

Annual plan 2016

Strategy and policy

  • Renew and focus multi-year strategy 2016-2018
  • Align NLR strategy with new ILEP and WHO strategies
  • More strategic focus on funding of NLR regional offices
  • Develop and implement new PME and Knowledge and Learning approaches
  • Develop NLR lobby and advocacy strategy and sustain collaboration in DCDD
  • Promote up scaling of chemoprophylaxis
  • Promote NTD cross-cutting approaches in prevention of disabilities and inclusion

Finance and administration

  • Implementation of a new financial information system at regional offices
  • ISO Certification
  • Operational audits in Nepal, Nigeria, Mekong offices

Partners and cooperation

  • Expand cooperation with Liliane Foundation in Mekong region and Indonesia
  • Lobby (together with DCDD) the Dutch government for disability inclusive development policy
  • Apply for funds from Dutch government schemes and international donors
  • Contribute to ILEP/NTD leprosy score cards for monitoring international progress

Portal Infolep

  • Further expand users, especially from endemic countries
  • Launch InfoNTD with substantial externally funding

Fundraising and communications

  • Prepare 50th anniversary in 2017
  • Grow local voluntary fundraising activities (friendraising)
  • Maintain level of income from private donors
  • Invest in video storytelling as the basis for reporting to and maintaining private donors