This training is intended to provide you with the tools to be a strong facilitator. This means that you feel equipped to…
Be a strong voice for inclusion:
“When people are included, they feel welcome; they feel good; they feel healthy. When people are excluded, they feel ‘bad’. Inclusion is the precondition for learning, happiness – for healthy living. Exclusion is the precondition for misery, loneliness and trouble. …. Belonging is NOT incidental – it is primary to our existence. …. Inclusion is the foundation of the house. It is not a guarantee, but rather a precondition for the growth and development of full and healthy human beings.”
— Jack Pearpoint & Marsha Forrest [What Is Inclusion?]
Not be afraid to admit your fears (and mistakes):
We believe that the Inclusion issue cuts directly to the core of our values and beliefs. Inclusion seems so simple, so full of common sense, and yet it is complex. Inclusion sets off fire works in the souls of those involved. Inclusion challenges our beliefs about humanity and cuts deep into the recesses of our hearts. Inclusion is NOT about placing a child with a disability in a classroom or a school. That is only a tiny piece of the puzzle. Rather, inclusion is about how we deal with diversity, how we deal with difference, how we deal (or avoid) dealing with our mortality.”
— Forrest & Pearpoint [Inclusion — The Bigger Picture!]
Believe inclusion is for everyone:
Inclusion does not mean we are all the same. Inclusion does not mean we all agree. Rather, inclusion celebrates our diversity and differences with respect and gratitude. The greater our diversity, the richer our capacity to create new visions. Inclusion is an antidote to racism and sexism because it welcomes these differences, and celebrates them as capacities rather than deficiencies. Inclusion is a farce when it only means “white, bright and middle class.” Inclusion means all – together – supporting one another. ” — Forrest & Pearpoint [Inclusion -- The Bigger Picture!]
And always keep in mind that ...
Inclusion isn’t a new program or something one “does” to or for someone else. It is a deeply rooted spiritual concept that one lives. It is not a trendy product or fad to be discarded. It is not a new label – “the inclusion kids”. It is not a bandwagon. People are either included or excluded. One cannot be a little bit pregnant or a little bit included (like the myth of “inclusive” recess or lunch). One is either “in” or “out”. One either belongs or doesn’t belong. If we exclude people, we are programing them for the fight of their lives – to get in and to belong.”
— Forrest & Pearpoint [Inclusion — The Bigger Picture!]Shifting DynamicsDave Hingsburger, a blogger on disability in Canada, wrote recently about his profound experience being presented to by people with disabilities in a University classroom rather than having people with disabilities be the subject of the discussion.
And then something amazing happened. Two women with disabilities got up to the front of the room and began to teach university students. Many of the students were in the Graduate Studies program, all of them took notes.
It took a while for what I was seeing with my eyes to be seen by my mind and my heart. Here, in front of me, in a university, two people with disabilities lead the discussion – they weren’t the subject of discussion. Two people with disabilities demonstrated how respectful teaching was done.
I thought about those people who were forced to stand naked in front of a camera, those who suffered the indignity of a pointer pointing at their bodies, those who looked at us beyond the camera with eyes that asked how we could sit and watch their abuse with academic calm. Nothing will ever apologize enough to those men and women. But the moment that two self-advocates got up in a university class to direct learning, to deliver content, to speak as experts, it was clear that something huge had happened.