On Monday January 13th, the Disability Pride Alberta Foundation hosted an open conversation at the Calgary Central Public Library. We asked community members to join us in a discussion about how we can best support the disability community in Calgary.
The response to our Meeting of the Minds was overwhelmingly positive. More than 35 members of the community showed up ( in -40 weather) to discuss the future of the Disability Pride Alberta Foundation. The conversation was inspiring!
At the event we asked the following questions:
- How can we connect the disability community?
- How can we teach people about disabilities in a fun and interesting way?
- Do you want a parade in 2020? What else can we do to celebrate and connect the disability community?
- We want to continue growing the influence of the disabled, how can do that?
- Do you have experience being part of a board? We need new Board Members and would love to talk with you.
Here are key takeaways from our meeting:
*People with disabilities are often isolated in their own communities and/or agencies. Can we break down the barriers between agencies to have people connect more? How?
*The main barrier to connecting disabled communities is getting the word out to everyone. One suggestion to address this challenge is to create a communication hub or forum through an app or Facebook group.
*The Disability Pride yearly parade is important and you want to have it again. There needs to be more than one event a year, so perhaps there could be one big event and several smaller.
*The Disability Pride society has a website where success stories can be shared. Would it be possible for the site to add a calendar that can share events from all different agencies?
*There needs to be more consistent and more frequent engagement with the greater community to educate people about disability. Could a shared campaign work?
*NPOs need to focus less on competition for funds and work together to produce celebratory events for people with disabilities.
*How can different agencies connect and work together? Why and how can we teach people about disability?
*Volunteers – Disability Pride Alberta is actively seeking volunteers and board members. Would you like to volunteer? Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Lots of cool ideas, right?!? It was an exciting meeting!
Please post your comments below and stay tuned. A follow up meeting is in the works for April and we’d love to see you there. We hope you’ll join our conversation and keep the disability community loud and proud!