DCDL helping to promote disability awareness


By Nicole Fowles

Glad You Asked

During March, the staff at the Delaware County District Library join our friends at the Delaware County Board of Developmental Disabilities to recognize and celebrate Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month.

We hope to help bring attention to DD Awareness Month, advocate for inclusion, and spotlight the barriers that people with disabilities face. Stop by any of the DCDL branches throughout the month to select a book from a specially curated list for all ages, and pick up a flyer and a coloring activity sheet.

On Wednesday, March 1, staff wore blue for inclusion and posted the group photos to our Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn pages. Coming up this week on March 9, the Ohio Coalition for the Education of Children with Disabilities (OCECD) will present a free webinar at 1:30 p.m. to help Ohioans learn about their services.

Later in the month, the Color-Coded Chef will promote life skills for all ages and abilities through the power of cooking on March 16 at 12 p.m.; the Adaptive Sports Connection will discuss their mission on March 21 at 11 a.m.; and Bradley Heaven and Daniel O’Connor from All Access Life will present on accessible video gaming on March 29 at 1 p.m. The public can register for each of these webinars online at www.dcbdd.org/dd-awareness.

For the disability community, every day is awareness day. But every March we try to spend a little extra time advocating and spreading awareness in the spirit of National Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month. DCDL joins DCBDD in striving for a universe where all people can thrive.

Try one of these titles from our booklist, and view the full list at the Delaware Library online catalog.

• “Disability Visibility: First-person Stories From the Twenty-first Century” edited by Alice Wong. This collection of essays from contemporary disabled writers celebrating the thirtieth anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act focuses on issues such as disabled performers in the theater and the everyday lives of the community.

• “Sitting Pretty: The View From My Ordinary Resilient Disabled Body” by Rebekah Taussig. The disability advocate and creator of the Instagram account @sitting_pretty offers an honest look at disability and its effects on identity, love, money and self-worth by processing a lifetime of memories to paint a beautiful portrait of a body that looks and moves differently.

• “The Words in My Hands” by Asphyxia. Part coming of age, part call to action, this fast-paced #ownvoices novel about a Deaf teenager is a unique and inspiring exploration of what it means to belong. Near-future Australia is controlled by Organicore, a company that produces the “perfectly balanced” synthetic meals that have all but replaced wild food, but Piper McBride, sixteen, deaf, and cued white, begins to wonder if wild food is as dangerous as Organicore’s propaganda says.

• “Nujeen: One Girl’s Incredible Journey From War-torn Syria in A Wheelchair” by Nujeen Mustafa. The co-author of “I Am Malala” traces the inspiring story of Syrian refugee Nujeen Mustafa, who, after being born with cerebral palsy and denied an education because of her disability, made a harrowing journey by wheelchair from her war-ravaged home to safety in Germany.

• “The Pretty One: On Life, Pop Culture, Disability, and Other Reasons to Fall in Love With Me” by Keah Brown. Keah Brown loves herself, but that hadn’t always been the case. Born with cerebral palsy, her greatest desire used to be normalcy and refuge from the steady stream of self-hate society strengthened inside her. But after years of introspection and reaching out to others in her community, she has reclaimed herself and changed her perspective.

• “Haben: The Deafblind Woman Who Conquered Harvard Law” by Haben Girma. Documents the story of the first deaf and blind graduate of Harvard Law School, tracing her refugee parents’ harrowing experiences in the Eritrea-Ethiopian war and her development of innovations that enabled her remarkable achievements.

If you have a question that you would like to see answered in this column, mail it to Nicole Fowles, Delaware County District Library, 84 E. Winter St., Delaware, OH 43015, or call us at 740-362-3861. You can also email your questions by visiting the library’s web site at www.delawarelibrary.org or directly to Nicole at [email protected]. No matter how you contact us, we’re always glad you asked!

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