Celebrate Good Times – a June Retrospective

Written by: Amy McClelland

until further notice celebrate everything.

(David Wolfe, author)

At Sadie’s Place for Innovative Inclusion we love to celebrate and that is why “Celebrate” is our guiding word for this June retrospective and second installment in our monthly count down to the 2017 “International Day of Persons with Disabilities.  When we are on automatic pilot we often miss the many occasions that deserve to be celebrated. When we wake up every day with the mindset that life is a beautiful reason for celebration, our days can be filled with a little more happiness, gratitude, and shared joy!  We can celebrate small things by taking short moments to appreciate all that we have, including people who surround us, meaningful experiences, and moments of beauty filling our every day.

In June here are some of the highlights of what we celebrated at Sadie’s Place for Innovative Inclusion:

  • Warm summer days and walks outside… and some rain :-).
  • Our relationships.
  • Cups of coffee and tea shared with our friends.
  • Our bodies and eating healthy food.
  • Diversity – appreciating each of our individuals gifts and taking time to see wonderful and unique aspects in each other.
  • Collaboration – bringing together our gifts and skills to create inspired, unique and well-rounded blogs, buttons, experiences and initiatives.
  • Our charitable status – recently we received our charitable status recognition!
  • New connections with community members at events such as the Tri-Pride Music Festival, Zehrs Glenridge’s Canada 150 celebration, and Extend-A-Family’s “I Choose Dignity!” march.
  • Button-making and the support of individuals and organizations who ordered buttons through INclusion by PRESS. In June we pressed over a thousand buttons!
  • Our Volunteers – we celebrate Allison, Kirk, Christine, Robert, Amy, Kayla R, Lindsey, Allison, Emily W, Emily K, Carrie G, and Sue A for the energy and passion you bring!
  • Our Coordinators Kayla and Lilly!

So lets keep celebrating and practising gratitude as more birthdays, sunny days, and new days unfold. The more we celebrate, the more our lives will be reason for celebration!

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About this image: This image was an art collaboration created by Allison Arai and Amy McClelland for the month of June in our count down to the International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2017.

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Counting Down and Celebrating the 2017 “International Day of Persons with Disabilities” with the Power of Words

Written by: Emily Kornelsen

Words wield incredible power. How we use our words matters, it makes all the difference. Words can encourage people’s spirits, spread joy, and affect positive change, and they can be hurtful and violent. Words pattern how we think about and interact with others and the world around us.

At Sadie’s Place for Innovative Inclusion we want to share the words that guide us. We use our words to foster relationships, to share important messages with buttons we create through INclusion by PRESS, to support each other through joys and challenges, to engage in meaningful and sometimes difficult conversations, to celebrate difference; and so much more! We are mindful of the power of words and strive to use our words in positive and impactful ways. Words, and the structures they create, are at the heart of so much of what we do at Sadie’s Place. Over the next 200 days we will be featuring one word a month leading up to the 2017 International Day of Persons with Disabilities on December 3rd.

We selected words that encompass our key values and reflect what Sadie’s Place means to us and how we live INclusion. There are lots ways to ‘use your words’, many of which don’t involve speaking at all. So along with each of our guiding words, we will share a collaborative art piece and launch a button for sale in our community that embodies what that word means to us.

Watch this blog space for our words, artwork, buttons, and passions over the coming months! We are excited to share these messages that are so central to who we are and what we do with all of you! Each month our featured buttons will be on sale at places where our INclusion by PRESS buttons are sold (Queen Street Commons Cafe, Waterloo Region Museum gift shop, and 4 new locations yet to be revealed)!

The Words that Guide Us

About this image: This image was an art collaboration created by Allison Arai and Amy McClelland for the launch of our campaign leading up to the International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2017.

Let’s celebrate love with love: Re-thinking Valentine’s Day

Written by: Amy McClelland, Kayla Ross, and Susan Arai, Sadie’s Place for Innovative Inclusion.

As February 14th approaches, we are taking time to reflect on how we can make Valentine’s Day more inclusive to all. When we look at common social expectations placed on Valentine’s celebrations, such as planning a special date with your partner and giving romantic gifts, we see that these norms can put limitations on who celebrates Valentine’s Day, how they celebrate it, and excludes many different loving relationships in our communities. At Sadie’s Place for Innovative Inclusion we are remembering our values of relationships and inclusion as we celebrate Valentine’s Day with intention.  Our goal this year is to celebrate all love and relationships and remove the restriction of a Valentine’s Day that is solely about romantic love. On a day meant to celebrate love we reflect on the idea that love has many meanings. To us, inclusion is a synonym for love; keeping hearts open to love all people and finding value in diversity is a form of love that we actively foster in every day. Building relationships is also a form of love; taking time to connect with other people in friendship, romantic partnership, in families, and in daily  interactions with co-workers and people in community. We are expanding Valentine’s Day to celebrate all love and all relationships.  Giving a card to a sibling, best friend,  co-worker, or the kind barista at your favourite coffee shop celebrates all of the different types of love and relationships that fill our lives. This gesture is also a reminder that any relationship bringing fulfillment and support has value and deserves to be celebrated. Remember, love has no restriction. Love does not discriminate against gender, race, ethnicity, religion, age or ability. Love is a universal act that should never be limited or judged. Let’s celebrate love with love.

To help us get in the spirit, we are re-watching “Love has no Labels” you can check it out on YouTube at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PnDgZuGIhHs

Reads of Interest: Books Focusing on Difference, Inclusion, and Disability

Hi everyone!

In preparation for our Chapters FUNdraiser event tonight, we have put together a list of interesting books focusing on difference, inclusion, and disability. We have included selections from children’s books, young adult literature, adult fiction and non-fiction, and books for parents and teachers. Join us at our Kitchener Chapters FUNdraiser and start your holiday gift shopping early or pick up a book you’ve never read before to support inclusion! With every purchase on November 17th from 6:30-9:00 pm of regularly priced in-store items at Chapters Kitchener, up to 20% of the purchase will be donated directly back to Sadie’s Place!  Here is a link to our Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/339046093120858/

Children’s Books

  • “It’s ok to be Different” by Todd Parr
    • Written for children just learning how to read, this book celebrates diversity and inclusion by telling children that it’s okay to be different, in whichever way you are.
  • “We’re Different We’re the Same” by Bobbi Kates
    • A Sesame Street book about how even though we all look different, we are similar on the inside.
  • “A Rainbow of Friends” by PK Hallinan
    • A book celebrating the differences between people because that’s what makes them special!
  • “We’ll Paint the Octopus Red” by Stephanie Stuve-Bodeen
    • A book about a six-year-old girl who looks forward to the birth of her younger brother, who has Down Syndrome, and asks what he can’t do because of this. Her father explains, with her help, that if given support and love, there isn’t anything he can’t do.
  • “My Brother Charlie” by Holly Robinson Peete
    • Written by a 12-year old girl and her mother about her experiences with a younger brother with autism. This book describes that Charlie is no different than other children and teaches young children about autism.
  • “Leo the Late Bloomer” by Robert Kraus
    • This book is about a tiger who takes longer than his friends at learning to read, write, and draw. His loving mother knows he’ll do things when he’s ready and that we all learn at difference paces.
  • “Freddie and the Fairy” by Julia Donaldson
    • A book about a fairy with a hearing impairment. The fairy mishears Freddie’s wishes and grants him the wrong wishes. Freddie learns how to communicate better with the fairy by speaking while looking at her, speaking slower, and more clearly, and the fairy is then able to grant the wishes he actually wants.
  • “The Black Book of Colours” by Menena Cottin and Rosana Faria
    • This book describes colours and other visual experiences through black raised line drawings and tactile experiences, includes braille translations for all text.
  • “Max the Champion” by Sean Stockdale and Alexandra Strick
    • A book about a group of children with various disabilities who play sports together. In the book, the children’s disabilities are never commented on and instead the love of sports is the central topic.

Young Adult Fiction Books

  • “Rules” by Cynthia Lord
    • A book about a young girl whose younger brother has autism and has developed a set of ‘rules’ for engaging with him and with the world. However, unlikely friendships with new neighbours teach her that sometimes these rules need to be broken.
  • “So B. It” by Sarah Weeks
    • This book is about a young girl whose mother has an intellectual disability and the young girl goes out on her own to discover where she comes from. This book discusses belonging, inclusion, and how love can be communicated even without words.
  • “Wonder” by R.J Palacio
    • A book about a boy who has Treacher-Collins syndrome and moves from being homeschooled to entering the public school system and is worried about how he will be treated by other students. While some bullying and exclusion happens in the story, he also forms friendships with other students and the school becomes a more inclusive place.
  • “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian” by Sherman Alexie
    • This book is about Junior, a cartoonist who grew up on a reserve but moves to an all-white school where the only other person who looks like him is the school mascot. Together, Junior and his new classmates learn about inclusion and belonging, and work against stigma to create a community where everyone can thrive.
  • “Girls Like Us” by Gail Giles
    • A book about two 18-year-old students who just graduated from the ‘special education’ program at their high school and are thrown together in their first jobs. As they couldn’t be more different, they start off with a lot of friction – but unlikely friendships begin to form as they grow accustomed to the world outside of high school.
  • “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time” by Mark Haddon
    • In this mystery novel, the protagonist is a 15-year old boy represented as having an Autism Spectrum disorder, although it is not specifically stated in the book. His mathematical abilities and sense of detail allow him to solve the mystery presented in this book.
  • “Mockingbird” by Kathryn Erskine
    • A book about an 11-year old girl with Asperger Syndrome who learns how to live without her much-loved older brother after his sudden death.

Adult Fiction Books

  • “Lottery” by Patricia Wood
    • This book describes what happens when Perry, a man with an intellectual disability living in Seattle, wins the lottery. All sorts of people (family, neighbours , and strangers) come out of nowhere to try and manipulate him into giving them some of the money and Perry has to distinguish them from his real friends.
  • “Still Alice” by Lisa Genova
    • A book about a professor with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease who has to adjust to a new way of living. Through interactions with her family and friends, she learns that although life is different now, it is still very much a life worth living.
  • “Beauty is a Verb” by Jennifer Bartlett, Sheila Black, and Michael Northen
    • A book of poetry written by authors with disabilities that addresses many diverse topics.

Adult Non-Fiction Books

  • “The Reason I Jump” by Naoki Higashida
    • A memoir written by a teenage boy who has autism. Using an alphabet grid, Naoki answers in his own words many questions about autism, explaining his own experiences.
  • “Look Me in The Eye: My Life with Asperger’s” by John Elder Robinson
    • Written by a man diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome in his 40s, this memoir discusses growing up different, finding one’s way in the world, and finally discovering who you are.

Books for Parents and/or Teachers

  • “Don’t We Already Do Inclusion?” by Paula Kluth
    • With a focus on inclusion in the classroom and the world, this book describes that even though one might ‘think’ they already are inclusive, there’s always ways to be a little bit more inclusive.

Be Inclusive this Halloween! Some Helpful Costume and Decoration Tips from Sadie’s Place for Innovative Inclusion

By: Sarah Forbes, Sue Arai, and Carrie Briscoe

Celebration of community

Here at Sadie’s Place, as we prepare to participate in the laughter, sweets, and celebration of costumes that are central parts of Halloween we try to keep the goals of our organization in mind. At Sadie’s Place we work to:

  • strengthen relationships and promote interdependence as a foundation for inclusion;
  • create authentic engagement in community;
  • shift disabling languages and practices; and
  • engage in ongoing reflection on our collaborative practices.

As we engage our principle of honouring human rights through compassion and celebration, we try to be mindful that common costumes can be hurtful to others.

In addition to handing out candy, tonight we are giving out activity pages for children that include various puzzles and inclusive messages. Here is a copy for those of you with a creative side! inclusive-halloween-puzzles

Mindfulness of ableism

We are mindful that many Halloween costumes and decorations rely on stigmatized images of mental illness and disability and perpetuate hurtful and dangerous myths. Costumes that rely on stereotypical portrayals of disability, connect disability with violence, or involve ‘props’ such as straightjackets, medication, or other disability-adjacent items further stigma around disability. In addition, Halloween attractions and decorations that portray mental and physical health treatments as terrifying ‘asylums’ add to the difficulty of discussing disability and mental health publicly.

This video by Cuquis Robledo captures the conversation well: http://www.rootedinrights.org/video-does-your-halloween-costume-marginalize-people-with-disabilities/

In addition, we found this blog post by Lydia X. Z. Brown helpful as we explored this issue in more depth: http://www.autistichoya.com/2012/10/halloweens-ableism-problem.html

When handing out sweets to community members, Adults in Motion published a post about how to be accepting of difference: https://www.facebook.com/AdultsInMotionWR/photos/a.783550315058756.1073741831.724336797646775/1140142436066207/?type=3&theater

Mindfulness of racial stereotypes and cultural appropriation

We are mindful that common costumes can be hurtful to others, and so we try to avoid costumes that celebrate racial stereotyping and cultural appropriation. We found information pages from Wilfrid Laurier University and York University to be helpful guides:

Laurier Students’ Public Interest Research Group: http://www.lspirg.org/costumes/

Centre for Human Rights at York Universityhttp://rights.info.yorku.ca/files/2015/10/Halloween_Memo.pdf

Mindfulness of gender stereotypes, unequal power relations, and sexism

We are mindful that Halloween costumes can often replicate gender stereotypes and unequal power relations, and diminish women to sexualized roles (e.g., maid costumes, sex trade workers). We found an article that helped us to think through these concerns:

The Huffington Post British Columbia published an article recently discussing the difference between costumes marketed to young children based on gender: http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/raina-delisle/halloween-costumes-sexy-inappropriate_b_6006922.html

 

INclusion by PRESS buttons now on sale at the Waterloo Region Museum

By Lina Nguyen and Lilly Broderick

We are happy to report that our INclusion by PRESS buttons are now officially on sale in the Waterloo Region Museum gift shop. Lilly Broderick, a member of Sadie’s Place, created this connection. As a previous staff member at the Waterloo Region Museum, Lilly had the intuition that it was a great organization to help us spread our message of inclusion and diversity.

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Members of Sadie’s Place (Lilly, Allison, and Lina) presenting our display to Lisa from the Waterloo Region Museum

 

The Waterloo Region Museum strives to provide equal and engaging leisure opportunities for every guest who visits. Some of the museum’s inclusive practices include: providing resources to the staff on using inclusive language, offering accessibility maps for their whole site, providing a copy of their guidebook in Braille, and offering the use of headsets to amplify sound in the theatre. The Waterloo Region Museum aspires to foster a sense of pride, identity, and belonging in the community, which echoes our aims at Sadie’s Place for Innovative Inclusion. We are excited to be able to work together to share our message of community inclusion and creativity.

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The colourful front wall of the Waterloo Region Museum

One of our favourite sections is the Coming of Age exhibit that takes a look at the ever-changing attitudes, styles, and societal influences that teenagers experience throughout the decades. We love dancing along to old tunes playing through the speakers and sending e-postcards to our friends with us in hairstyles inspired by the 1920s to 1980s. Even though fads, fashion, and language evolve over the years, the fundamental experiences teenagers face have stayed relatively unchanged. Everyone is connected through their shared life experiences; be it love, music, friends, family or the pursuit of knowledge and fun. This echoes an idea that we at Sadie’s Place hold near and dear to our hearts—connecting with people through shared passions and embracing diversity. We may look, walk, talk and think differently, but at our core, everyone in the community is connected to one another through shared life experiences.

We highly recommend a visit to the Waterloo Region Museum if you want to learn more about the history of this place we call home. While you are there, feel free to take a stroll through the gift shop and check out our INclusion by PRESS buttons. Our “Envisioning Diversity” mirrors look to a future where diversity and individuality is widely celebrated. Our “Connecting Together” magnets remind us of the importance of building relationships in which each person is valued and able to thrive in community.

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Our button display in the Waterloo Region Museum gift shop!

From a historic look at migration to more recent technological and industrial advances, the Waterloo Region Museum depicts the change and growth seen in the community for over a thousand years. It’s our hope that our INclusion by PRESS buttons will also be able to facilitate change in the region by bringing people together and promoting inclusion for all. The Waterloo Region Museum shares our belief in community engagement and celebrating diversity, and we hope that these buttons will help spark conversations and spread that message throughout the Waterloo Region.

Reflecting on Our Title “Community Inclusion and Leisure Collaborator”

By Lina Nguyen and Kayla Haas

For the most part, job titles are meant to represent the position a person holds in a company and provides a description of what they do. When you read our job title, our job description might not be immediately clear to everyone. Our title, Community Inclusion and Leisure Collaborator, expresses what we do and how; even if it isn’t as commonly known as job titles such as Teacher, Police Officer, or Researcher. Our title might appear to be lengthy, but each word has been chosen carefully to reflect the values of Sadie’s Place for Innovative Inclusion. We value communities that celebrate differences and promote inclusion for all members. We value collaborative engagement in meaningful leisure experiences and we value building relationships.

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Lina, Allison, and Kayla cooking together

Unlike other job titles, ours is an act of resistance in addition to offering an explanation of our responsibilities. Our title was chosen over “support worker” or “therapist” as a deliberate means to shift unequal power distribution that can be present in caring relationships. Typically, traditional titles reflect a relationship between a care provider (support worker/therapist) and a care recipient (patient/client). Power and the power to care is often thought of as unequally distributed. For example, a care provider might create a therapy plan for a care recipient, without seeking input from the recipient. Similarly, care is seen as flowing in one direction – from provider to recipient without recognizing the influence of both people on the other.

Instead, as collaborators we reflect the importance of shared power and care between two people. We make decisions together about how we engage with/in our community. We use our shared talents and interests to guide our community engagement. For example, Lina and Allison’s shared love of art lead them to collaboratively create a faerie house for McDougall Cottage in Cambridge. Kayla and Allison joined a community ukulele club to foster their mutual love of music. This aspect of our title reflects the relational approach we take in our practice. We believe in mutuality, shared experiences, and relationships that benefit each and every person involved. The relational approach we take in our work isn’t limited to the relationships between members of Sadie’s Place. It also extends to the relationships we create with other community members.

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Lina and Allison dropping off their Faerie house at the McDougall Cottage

Ukulele Club

Allison and Kayla playing music with the ukulele club

When we have the opportunity to connect with community members over a conversation about our role, it usually makes them stop and think. A lot of people have said that they have never really reflected on how they think about (dis)ability and how that affects their lives. Not everyone has had the opportunity to get to know someone who has an impairment, be it developmental, physical, or cognitive. Our conversation acts as a reminder that having an impairment isn’t uncommon; it’s universal – something that we all experience. But if impairments are universal, why is it that some people are excluded while others aren’t?

Being a Community Inclusion and Leisure Collaborator gives us an opportunity to bridge difference and encourage others to do more to make sure everyone in the community feels welcomed and accepted. We speak about the way our practices bring people closer together through shared experiences and meaningful engagement and how we resist practices that are disabling. We challenge people’s ways of thinking by introducing them to different perspectives and shining a light on issues many people overlook or take for granted. Sadie’s Place for Innovative Inclusion embraces inclusivity, diversity, and social justice, and we act as bridges for other community members to make connections with people from all walks of life and build relationships that allow for creativity, growth, and interdependence.

Creating Community in Music: Joining a Ukulele Club in Waterloo

By Kayla Haas

It is often society’s habitual response to think that because someone has a disability they have to be fixed, or cured, or engaged in some sort of therapy or skill development. What about engaging in something for the enjoyment and enrichment of sharing something we are passionate about with another person? That has been our experience with our local ukulele club.

Music is an important place of connection for Allison and I. We share a love of experiencing music. Allison plays percussion and I play the ukulele. We also sing, dance, and attend concerts together. Through music our relationship has grown. It gives us space to learn about each other’s unique and shared talents while engaging in something we both love.

As part of our Sadie’s Place Bridges to Community, we explored a local ukulele club. Our first experience with this club was incredibly positive and inclusive. They are truly open to all ages and skill levels! We were welcomed in like old friends and felt an immediate sense of belonging with like-minded musicians. Joe (the founder of the group) and Dianne were all smiles when we walked in the room and greeted us enthusiastically. Joe started the club after attending a similar group in Hespeler. He says he was drawn in by the diversity of players and the shared love of music, “It didn’t matter who you are, you all talked and you all played, it was just a nice feeling” Joe reflected (Vrbanac, 2016, para. 10).

This group of musicians shares a number of principles we hold at Sadie’s Place for Innovative Inclusion. Difference is not only welcomed, but also celebrated! Before we arrived at the ukulele club for the first time, I wondered what the response would be to having Allison bring her drum—this was after all a ukulele group. I hoped she would be recognized as a fellow music lover who brought in a different skill set, rather than someone who didn’t fit in with the rest of the “uke” players. And she absolutely was! Members expressed their excitement with having drumbeats among the sounds of stringed instruments. Another example of celebrating difference is in the encouragement to play intuitively, so as to welcome everyone’s unique musical style.

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The ukulele club instruments

The ukulele club also shares our Sadie’s Place philosophy that emphasizes a focus on relationships, interdependence, and collaboration. The focus of the group is on creating music collaboratively. Members look to one another for support when learning a new song or leading an old favourite. This group recognizes that no musician is an island. Through mutual support we are able to create something greater than any one person could. New members are always welcome, and the group only gets better with each new addition.

This group also shares our understanding of meaningful engagement in recreation and leisure experiences. It is clear to Allison and I that the ukulele club exists to connect people who share a love of music, rather than to train professional musicians. Occasionally, a member would pose a question about a difficult chord or strumming pattern. Don, the group leader, would always answers questions thoroughly and thoughtfully. He reminded everyone to enjoy the music first, and put technical skill second. He also emphasized that if the strumming pattern didn’t match the rest of the group, it was perfectly all right! It was this love for music and passion for playing that brought the club together.

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Some of our friends from the ukulele club

After our first visit we left the ukulele club with a renewed love of music and an expanded repertoire of songs to practice. The positive spirit of the ukulele club left us eager to return for future jam sessions. Allison will often reflect “I like the music” and will punctuate her thoughts with some singing. We are excited to call ourselves regular members of this inclusive community of people passionate about ukulele!

To learn more about the ukulele club, please read this interview with Joe in the Waterloo Chronicle! If you want to join us and be a part of the music, come check out the club on Wednesday nights from 6:30pm – 8:30pm. The club usually meets at the Wing 404 R.C.A.F.A. Rotary Adult Centre in Waterloo but for the summer we are at the Adult Recreation Centre in Uptown Waterloo. Check out the ukulele club’s Facebook page for more details. Everyone is welcome!

Re-Creating Place

Written by: Susan Arai

The Oxford English Dictionary states place is “a position or station occupied by custom, entitlement, or right; an allotted position; a space or position allocated to or reserved for a person.”1. We endeavour to remake places for people with developmental disabilities in community. We hope to shift understandings of place from being a noun (having a place) to place as a verb (making or creating place). For all of us, our place in community is constantly changing and being re-made as we grow and change, or as we no longer wish to fit into the small boxes created for us.

Through centuries of oppression, people with disabilities have been rendered invisible in communities (having no place) or relegated to the margins of society (moved into devalued places). For example, segregated schools and institutions were often placed in industrial areas or on the outskirts of communities. When homes or programs were created in the boundaries of community they often became “mini-institutions” in which people with developmental disabilities and paid staff became segregated behind the walls of the building with little interaction with other members of the community. Similarly, the concept of life skills arose in the 1970s with the idea that we had to teach people with developmental disabilities “life skills” so that they could function independently in “normal” community. It has a tone of “fixing” people. The challenge was (1) the way people with disabilities are viewed, and (2) the vision stopped there with the idea of fixing people so they could be placed in community, rather than being part of community. This vision was limiting and static. The focus of Sadie’s place is on building relationships and creating place or community, not fixing people with developmental disabilities. As an individual is able to express natural abilities, capacities and talents, and engage in lifelong learning this creates opportunities for others to reflect on how they have created disabling conditions that put people in places (place as a noun). We endeavour to engage and create a new paradigm.

When we plan and make decisions at Sadie’s Place for Innovative Inclusion, we do so with this intention of re-creating place (place as a verb) in mind. For example, rather than thinking about going for a walk in a community for physical activity (i.e., fixing people), we think about it in the larger picture of recreating place and the role that walking plays in a natural web of relationships in community and the spirit of individuals. 

[1] Citation: “place, n.1”. OED Online. March 2015. Oxford University Press.

http://www.oed.com/view/Entry/144864?rskey=vxdxKv&result=1 (accessed June 01, 2015).

Inspiration

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Written by: Susan Arai

Words have an impact!

Inspiration for the INclusion by PRESS is drawn from Dr. Masaru Emoto, a doctor of alternative medicine, who has shown the impact of exposing water to a particular word or piece of music, freezing it, and photographing the ice crystals that form.

Dr. Emoto discovered that “from beautiful words and music, come beautiful crystals and from mean-spirited, negative words, come malformed and misshapen crystals.” Since the adult human body is approximately 70% water and infant bodies are about 90% water, think of the impact that words have on us at a cellular level.

Our INclusion by PRESS buttons display words, phrases, and collectively created artwork in hopes to influence embodied community change in spaces, relationships, thoughts, and bodies. To order buttons click here.