Disability History Month

To highlight Disability Month, a number of events are being held across both campuses in December. 

Tuesday 9 December – ‘Dementia Friends’

People with dementia get by with a little help from their friends; and anybody can become a Dementia Friend. It’s just about understanding more about dementia and the small things you can do to help people with the condition.

Dementia Friends learn a little bit about what it’s like to live with dementia and turn that understanding into action. Come along to this session to become a friend and get a simple introduction to Dementia, and find out how you can help.

For full details and to book, please head to the Eventbrite page.

Wednesday 10 December – Exploring the use of video within social media

The use of video within social media is providing researchers with novel ways of publicising research findings. This is inspiring researchers to think outside of traditional academic approaches, and enabling research to extend to new and wide-ranging audiences.

This event focuses on the Living Well with Dementia project, which was designed to use video to raise awareness and challenge gaps in perceptions and understanding of dementia. The project involved filming and disseminating a video featuring people with dementia and carers talking about what it means to live well with dementia.

The finished video was uploaded to YouTube, with members of the public invited to complete a short survey to establish whether watching the video challenged their understanding of dementia.

For full details and to book, please head to the Eventbrite page.

Friday 12 December – Changing attitudes: Paralympian’s perspectives on disability

Since the 2008 Beijing Olympics, there has been an increasing interest in the Paralympics, which resulted in the highest level of interest so far for London 2012, the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi and this year’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

The impact of the Paralympics and, in particular, London, suggests the games have had a positive impact and have helped improve public attitude towards disability within Britain.

At this event, three Paralympian’s –  Kate Grey, swimmer and Sky Sports Living for Sport Mentor/BBC sports reporter, Ben Rushgrove, sprinter and Lucy Shuker, tennis player – will share their reflections on disability.

For full details and to book, please head to the Eventbrite page.

The new AGCAS video for disabled students and graduates

The Disability Task Group has announced the release of ‘Get that Job’, the new AGCAS video for disabled students and graduates, which is aimed at supporting students and graduates in their transition from university into employment.

The video is available on MyCareerHub and looks at the following areas,

  • identifying disability-friendly employers
  • applying for work
  • disclosing a disability
  • adjustments in the workplace

Get that Job features opinion from disabled graduates who discuss their experiences of moving from university into their jobs. They talk through their feelings and experiences of the recruitment process, the pros and cons of the notoriously grey area of disclosure, as well as their advice for present students.

To assist present students with finding the right employer and the transition into the workplace the video also shows the perspective of employers from different sectors, a specialist Disability Careers Adviser and a representative of the not-for-profit organisation EmployAbility.

Additionally the video also looks at adjustments in the workplace. Although need in this area vary hugely depending on the individual, some of the graduates discuss those they have in place. For adjustments where there may be a cost, there is also information and advice on obtaining funding.


Media School runs citizen journalism workshops for disability charity


Staff and students from Bournemouth University’s Media School have been helping people with disabilities develop the skills needed to become citizen journalists.

Journalism academics and students have run a number of workshops with volunteers from charity Access Dorset, which is establishing a citizen journalism project.

The charity – which supports older people, people with learning disabilities and their carers – wants to enable volunteers to create films for their website and share the stories of their members through their Access Dorset TV project.

Dave Thompson, Development Manager for Access Dorset, said: “In order to have it very much led by disabled people and carers themselves, we wanted to be able to skill up people to do it themselves. So not only are they sharing the stories and issues affecting disabled people, but they are also telling the stories themselves.

“We are on a huge learning curve at the moment and we are really grateful for the support that we are getting from the Media School to help us to develop that skill base, enabling us to move forward quickly.”

Dr Ann Luce, Lecturer in Journalism and Communication, has been running weekly workshops in the Media School with the volunteer citizen journalists – covering everything from how to use the cameras, to interview techniques and how to create sequences of different shots.

She said: “The purpose of this project is to empower disabled people to use their voices and become a part of the media and tell their stories, but also, more importantly, give them the skills to go on and empower other disabled people.

“My hope is that we can stop marginalisation, stigmatisation and sensationalism of disabled voices and stories in the media – this is just the first step.”

Third year BA (Hons) Multimedia Journalism student Nicolas Williams has been assisting in the workshops.

He said: “I’m helping out with the technical skills, like how to use the camera and editing equipment. I’ve also been showing them some of my work as well as going through it with them.

“It’s not easy, but it’s nice to see them going through it and trying their hardest, learning and doing really well.”

The workshops have been funded by BU’s Fusion Investment Fund and the BU team will continue to work with the citizen journalists throughout the first year of the project, before helping to produce a report of its progress.

Kelvin Trevett, of Poole, was one of the volunteer citizen journalists taking part in the workshop.

He said: “I was looking for some voluntary work and this looked really interesting and exciting.

“It’s been really good and very informative, and I think I will be more confident to actually go out there and do it now.

“I’m looking forward to putting everything we’ve learnt so far into practice.”