Recent evidence from a poll commissioned by the charity, Scope, found that nearly 40% of people (who are not disabled and do not have a disabled family member) don't know any disabled people, and that 90% of Britons have never had a disabled person in their house for a social occasion. These are just some of the statistics that highlight how disabled people are, for the most part, invisible in modern day-to-day life.
A new initiative, looking to support and promote inclusion for disabled people, is Keys to Inclusion, a social enterprise registered with the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC). Keys to Inclusion works with children with disabilities and their families to promote inclusion. Its main areas of work includes strategic and practical support to organisations; the creation of opportunities for networks that support and promote inclusion; facilitation and design for personal support; information, support, advocacy and signposting; and training and facilitation.
A partnership between Shirley Cusack and Lesley Livesey, Keys to Inclusion was conceived over two years ago and began to operate in March 2010. Previously, Shirley and Lesley had worked together for over six years, supporting and managing services for children with disabilities in a large Scottish charity.
The website has been specifically designed to provide information and a forum for others who wish to promote inclusion. It provides helpful information on the laws and policies surrounding disability issues and how to campaign for change, as well as training and resources, and the latest news from the Scottish Government on self-directed support. It focuses on working with individuals and social services to encourage transition from inflexible provision of service to an approach, which enables positive choices and person-centred support.
Links to organisations for children and young people with disabilities in Scotland, organisations for all people with disabilities in Scotland, and organisations for all children in Scotland are also available on the website.
Visit the website: Keys to Inclusion.