by Riley Saban
International Day of People with Disability is celebrated internationally. The purpose of the day is to raise awareness, understanding and acceptance of people with disability and to also celebrate achievements and contributions.
For me, it is a day to appreciate the people with disabilities who have advocated and contributed to changing perceptions for social change. It is also a day to be grateful for the organisations that were formed to support the rights of people with disabilities.
It is a day worth celebrating.
I like to play my part in making the world a more inclusive society and I am fortunate I get the opportunities to do so.
This year, I was asked to be a part of the NSW Department Education Student Advisory Committee. It is a group of diverse students who collaborate with teachers to have our voices heard. Our last meeting via Zoom was working together on a website created by teachers to make it more appealing for the younger generation.
On the 3rd December, I was invited to present with my friend and co-presenter, Gai Cross for the NSW Department of Education via a webinar to teachers. I had the opportunity to present and raise awareness on something that I am so very passionate about “assistive technology.” It is very rewarding to be able to support students by teaching teachers on how to use devices.
I also was invited to speak to a local primary school as the students had watched the documentary becoming Superhuman which I featured in 2016. The students seemed happy to meet me when I arrived at the school. It was a little funny as some of them were quite mesmerised as they hadn’t met anyone they had seen on the TV before!
I believe knowledge is power, and I was very open to the children asking me any questions. And, lots of questions were asked. There were some really deep personal questions and some very entertaining ones. One little boy asked me how I slept. Which I replied “obviously in a bed”. He thought that my wheelchair just rolled into a bed. This made me laugh.
I would like to give a shout out to the class 2VB. I know they will be reading this article (wink wink). I would like to thank them for the lovely cards that they made for me. The children came up with new assistive technology drawings to enhance my life. Some ideas were very innovative and I can see some future inventors and bio engineers in the making.
Thanks 2VB, I will treasure the cards forever.
I really enjoy sharing my experiences and messages with people to give understanding about my personal perspective.
I am winding it up for the school term and looking forward to the school holidays.
I would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and have a happy New Year.
Here’s a link to the article and a short version of the webinar https://tinyurl.com/Department-Education-Riley-S