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General Assembly 2020

​​Welcome to our General Assembly page!

First Announcement - 24 April 2019

We are together again and this time with ONCE in Spain

The World Blind Union (WBU) and the International Council for Education of People with Visual Impairment (ICEVI) will be holding their third Joint General Assemblies in Madrid, Spain on 19-24 June 2020. The Joint General Assemblies conducted in Bangkok (2012) and Orlando (2016) highlighted the synergy between  WBU and ICEVI and we are together again, this time with ONCE,  promoting the rights of persons with visual impairment.  

The host organisation of the 2020 General Assemblies is ONCE, the National Organisation of the Blind in Spain. ONCE is a well-respected partner of WBU and ICEVI, with a a staff of over 70,000  and extensive experience in organising international events.  ONCE has appointed a dedicated team to address every issue to ensure that this global event  is a  great success.  

Madrid is well connected by international airlines from various world cities.  Iberia airlines, the national carrier of Spain is part of the Star Alliance airlines network and therefore, code share flight connections are able to connect Madrid to even small cities of most countries.  

Theme of the General Assemblies

The broad theme of the General Assemblies is “World Blind Summit: What it means to be Blind and Visually Impaired”.  The Schedule of the full event is as follows:

  • Friday,  June 19 to Saturday, June 20 – WBU Assembly proceedings
  • Sunday,  June 21 – Joint WBU-ICEVI plenary and concurrent sessions 
  • Monday, June 22 – Day 2 of joint WBU-ICEVI plenary and concurrent sessions, Gala Dinner
  • Tuesday, June 23 – ICEVI  Paper Presentations – Day 1
  • Wednesday, June 24 – ICEVI Paper Presentation – Day 2, ICEVI General Assembly

The International Organising Committee of WBU, ICEVI and ONCE, chaired by Dr. Fredric Schroeder, President WBU, has commenced the overall planning to ensure the event a great success.

The Joint Program Committee, chaired by Dr. Frances Gentle, President ICEVI, will contact speakers for the Joint WBU-ICEVI days of plenary and concurrent sessions on a wide range of thematic topics.

The ICEVI Program Committee will issue a Call for Papers for the ICEVI Presentation Days. The two days will include seminar and conference style presentations and workshops on current topics in the field of vision impairment.   The ICEVI Call for Papers and Abstract Submission Form will be posted on the ICEVI website during the first week of May 2019.

ONCE is developing a dedicated website for the General Assembly which will be in operation in early July 2019.  The details of the program schedule will be posted on the General Assemblies website and also the websites of WBU and ICEVI.  

Registration Fee

The registration fees for the General Assemblies are as follows:

Full General Assemblies (19-24 June) :


  • Delegates:         775 
  • Observers         675
  • Guides/ Interpretors: 625

WBU General Assembly and Joint Days (19-22 June)

  • Delegates              575
  •  Observers               475
  • Guides/ Interpreters       425

ICEVI General Assembly and Joint Days (21-24 June)


  • Delegates             525
  • Observers             425
  • Guides/ Interpreters     375

For more information about registration, go to General Assemblies Website​.


The Marriott hotel, Madrid is the venue of the WBU-ICEVI General Assemblies.  The hotel is offering a special rate of Euro 140 (Plus 10% tax) rate for a double room which is inclusive of breakfast and free wifi.  The Hotel has a capacity of more than 800 rooms and is located close to the Madrid International Airport.  Bookings may be done either directly or through the  ONCE.  The hotel  offers a free shuttle service every hour to and from the airport, and the travel time is approximately 20 minutes.  Taxis from the airport to the hotel cost around 15 Euros.   

Visas for Spain:

Spain does not have any restrictions for applying for Visas by any country.  For delegates from the European Union, a Schengen Visa allows entry into Spain.  Some countries are eligible for obtaining e-Visas on arrival.  ONCE will be assisting delegates with the issuance of invitation letters for obtaining visas and more details will be posted on the General Assembly website.

The CEOs of WBU and ICEVI will be providing regular updates on the General Assemblies and we are sure you will  list the Madrid General Assembly as one of the most memorable events of recent times. We look forward to welcoming you to Madrid, Spain on 19-24 June 2020.    

Dr. Fredric K Schroeder Dr. Frances Gentle

President, WBU President, ICEVI

April 2019