Today is the catchily known International Day of Persons with Disabilities or the IPDWD. Unwieldy acronyms aside, we disabled people account for 1 billion people, that’s 15% of the worldwide population. This year the theme is innovation, and I want to share with you three different films made by or with friends of mine.
Firstly, my friend Kate Caryer wrote, directed and acted in a film juxtaposing two different attitudes to disability and the implications on outcomes for disabled people; in particular the lifechanging effect of enabling and promoting communication.
Using her eye-gaze device my friend and Teach Us Too ambassador, Becky Tyler, creates art and is an avid gamer. The BBC caught up with her and filmed her as she settles into her new life as a student at Dundee University, where she studies under another disabled friend of mine, Professor Annalu Waller. Her film is on BBC iplayer and can be seen by clicking this link: making art with my eyes
Finally, I wanted to share a film made by my friend Oli, who I meet at One Voice every year. Using his eye-gaze machine he is an awesome DJ and I really enjoyed being behind the desk with him this summer; you can see him in action on his website here. He lives in the Lake District and recently made a film for the Kendal Mountain Film Festival about scaling Winder in his extreme 8 off-road chair.
All of us are living our best life thanks to innovations in disability which enable us to break down barriers in society one at a time.