Disability Inclusion 2

I am passionate about youth ministry being inclusive not exclusive, and groups being a community of difference not a collective of sameness. This does however require an intentionality, a flexibility and an openness ….. it also means additional challenges in the outworking of this, but at the same time often leads to a greater depth, learning and understanding in the experience of the group. (I will step down from my youth-work Soap Box now)
chain of people ending with wheel chair.jpg
In terms of being welcoming to young people with additional needs or disabilities though, what does this mean?
From a legislative point of view it means looking at and amending policies and practices that would prevent someone with a disability taking part. It also means being willing to make “reasonable adjustment” to enable someone with additional needs to participate.
In many ways this is a natural outworking of our faith, and I see lots of Church groups that extend a welcome and a value to all, offering a place of being and belonging to all sorts of young people who otherwise may be marginalised. I’ve also been blessed, encouraged and helped by the welcome my son has received in so many places.
I do think though that it requires an intentionality, flexibility and openness. What I want to try and write then is something from the point of view of disabled young people and their parent(s), something that is practical and helpful. I am however finding it hard to write, So think of this post as the 2nd Indiana Jones film, i.e not very good but paving the way for a great part 3!