What is STAGES?
We know that being a parent of a Disabled child or young person can sometimes be confusing, overwhelming, and isolating. We believe it can also be life-affirming and exciting. Most information given to parents comes from medical or educational professionals. Inclusion Barnet is a charity run by Disabled people. We believe the social model of disability, alongside other approaches, is a fantastic tool to understand the experience of Disabled people and to enable them to live their best lives. The social model says that it is not the condition that makes us Disabled but the barriers in society. That’s why we designed STAGES, a new Pilot project which aims to provide a safe, supportive and empowering space where parents can find out more and walk alongside others in this journey.
We want to provide a space where parents are empowered with knowledge and guidance around the social model of disability concept with peer support as families are crucial to a young person’s journey. This funding for 6-months is to set up a self-sustainable project with Barnet parents supporting one another going forward.
The project will include four parts:
- Educational leaflet – To reach more people in this conversation, including local healthcare professionals, we will co-design an educational leaflet. This leaflet will briefly highlight the impact that the social model of disability can have in parents’ lives, and direct people to resources to find out more.
- Online resource page – With parents, we will co-design a supportive and engaging online resource page with information organized by those with lived experience of disability. This resource will offer families an alternative source of information that challenges some of the negative narratives and descriptions.
- Social media support group – We will create a social media support group for parents where members can share encouragement and information with other local families, monitored by peers of lived experience.
- In-person events – We will run small events between November 2021 and March 2022. These events will have Disabled speakers sharing their experiences and provide an opportunity for parents to share with other parents in a safe and supportive environment. The first event will be via zoom.
Unsure about the term Disabled people? Is this for my child? At Inclusion Barnet we work with anyone who experiences disabling barriers. We use the social model term Disabled people because this gives people the opportunity to embrace their identity. We are aware that other people use other terms. For example mental health issues, Deaf, Long term conditions, Neurodivergence, dyslexia, ADHD, autism, dyspraxia, learning difficulties, Special Educational Needs, physical impairment, sensory Impairment, etc. Therefore if your child is currently facing Disabling barriers in society this group is for you whatever the label.
Please visit our Get Involved page for more information to register your interest and contact details.