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 At Cessible Healthcare, we don’t just provide disability services. Our mission is to create an environment of genuine inclusion and participation for our clients. A recent article has brought to light the often-overlooked aspects of community engagement for individuals with disabilities. Let’s delve into the key insights and see how we can enhance our support services.

 

Unveiling the Heart of Inclusion: Moving Beyond Physical Presence

Inclusion has often been perceived as being present in a physical space. However, this research highlights that true inclusion is not solely about physical presence. It is about creating a sense of belonging and fostering meaningful connections.

The Dual Reality
In the study, participants had two distinct desires: to be recognized and accepted in mainstream settings, and to maintain meaningful connections within their disabled community. It is crucial to acknowledge and value the importance of these diverse social spheres when striving towards an inclusive healthcare approach.

Key Attributes for True Belonging

1. Self-Determination
Self-determination is one of the most important aspects of enabling our clients to make choices and take initiative in their community interactions. It’s crucial to encourage self-chosen activities that enhance autonomy.

2. Social Identity
Recognizing the significance of relationships where our clients feel known and accepted is fundamental in building a sense of social identity. These connections, whether in the local shops or recreational settings, contribute to a positive social identity.

3. Reciprocity
Encouraging reciprocity within relationships fosters a sense of value and contributes to the humanizing of important connections. It’s not just about what we provide, but also about the mutual benefits of shared experiences.

4. Participatory Expectations
Setting high, yet achievable, expectations for community participation is empowering. It challenges debilitating assumptions and opens doors to new possibilities.

5. Psychological Safety
Creating environments where our clients feel heard and valued is essential in fostering a sense of psychological safety. By actively listening and responding to their needs, we can contribute to a greater sense of psychological safety.

 

A Call to Shape Inclusive Communities
Join us, as part of the Cessible family, in redefining the narrative of disability services. Our dedication extends beyond physical assistance; it involves actively participating in the creation of inclusive communities.

Challenge: Let’s challenge traditional models and actively seek ways to integrate the diverse imaginations of our clients into our service delivery.

Dialogue: Let’s engage in a two-way conversation. By actively listening to our clients and the larger community, we can better comprehend their needs and aspirations.

Empower: Let’s empower our clients to take an active part in the decision-making processes that shape their lives.

By embracing these principles, we move beyond a one-dimensional view of inclusion, actively contributing to the creation of communities where everyone feels a true sense of belonging. Let’s work together to make inclusivity a cornerstone of Cessible Healthcare’s mission.

 

Reference: Milner, P. and Kelly, B., 2009. Community participation and inclusion: People with disabilities defining their place. Disability & Society24(1), pp.47-62.

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