Disability Wales is celebrating the achievements of the Enabling Wales project which finishes this month after a very successful three year run.
A unique project, Enabling Wales was set up to deliver:
“An enabling society in which disabled children and adults enjoy the right to independent living and social inclusion”
Graduates of the training course, in Active Citizenship, Equality and Democracy, have already gone on to create change in campaigning on disability equality issues, locally and nationally.
Nathan Lee Davies, course graduate said:
“Two years ago, I had a very important decision to make: Do I swim or do I sink in the face of cuts to benefits and the support I am entitled to?
I knew I had to keep fighting for what is right – both for me and others – but I did not have any idea of where to begin. The Enabling Wales programme changed all of this by giving me the knowledge and encouragement I needed to become a disability rights activist.
I truly believe that the Enabling Wales course changed my life for the better. It empowered me and taught me that the only thing I have to lose are my chains.”
Enabling Wales is a Welsh Government funded project run by Disability Wales in partnership with DEWIS CIL and the Wales Co-operative Centre. The project has been working to strengthen and establish Disabled People’s Organisations (DPOs) in parts of Wales where disabled people are under-represented. Training programmes have developed disabled young people as ambassadors.
Today’s celebration will also launch two new Centres for Independent Living, created as social enterprises, and the Enabling Wales toolkit and website to support the continuation of the work.
Rhian Davies, Chief Executive of Disability Wales’s said:
“Enabling Wales has empowered disabled people to change their own lives and others’. We live in times where the rights of disabled people are increasingly under attack and we must challenge this in our local communities and at the highest levels of Government.
The more information and knowledge disabled people have, the stronger we are together in fighting inequality and social injustice.”
Young activist Mair Elliott said:
“Since completing the Young Enabling Wales project, I have gained some incredible experiences. My campaign work has been fruitful and I have become an accomplished spokesperson (something which I never thought possible in the past).
The skills and knowledge I learned from the course has made an immeasurable difference to my work and confidence. In October 2016 I was awarded a Welsh Government award for making a difference, which really allowed me to see how my work has impacted Wales.”