Dear friends, we are happy to announce that our publication is ready! You can download your online version HERE
We’re tremendously excited to address and share the process of ongoing (and frankly, long overdue) conversations that have been transforming the ways in which we conceive our roles and mindsets as community organizers and individuals. In this brochure, we have collected some impressions, personal experiences, tips and data concerning accessibility in a very basic way. We find it important to note the many different layers and intersections of accessibility on physical, mental, financial & bureaucratic levels, paying close attention to how these factors impact individuals and communities in different depths.
As an international network of grassroots groups, European Youth for Action (EYFA) has been working on a year-long project visibilizing the structural and societal challenges that young and/ or marginalised people with disabilities face within and outside of movements. We hope to encourage activists to question their understanding of accessibility and inclusion with the aim of building and strengthening solidarity practices and allyship. We engaged with various disability justice groups and individuals with invisible and visible disabilities to gather various perspectives that are compiled in this guide. Our previous work in social and climate justice contexts has shown us how much we have to learn about contributing to empowering and accessible spaces, particularly in the context of gatherings, training, parties, concerts, and other events that invite collaboration.
As part of our collective learning journey, and as a group composed of people with and without (in-)visible disabilities, neurodiversities and chronic illnesses ourselves, we are sharing here interviews, articles, comics, tools, and online resources that all have something to say about disability justice. We hope this guide offers insights on how we can better organise ourselves / events / networks and daily life in a way that is more inclusive and accessible to all, regardless of ability, ethnicity, gender, sexuality or class.
(Dis?)Ability: An Online Course Fostering Accessibility in Youth Grassroots Groups
(Dis?)Ability is an online course that explores ways to increase accessibility in activism and event organising. The course is divided in 5 lessons that tackle topics such as accessibility, inclusivity, disability justice, privilege and oppression in youth activist movements. It also aims to create a space to reflect about self-organized events and spaces in terms of access and inclusivity. These lessons will provide tools to challenge existing barriers in these spaces and to incentivise a move towards dismantling them.
The content of the course was created for and by youths in grassroots groups, along with people experiencing limited access to activist spaces, due, for example, to disability or illness. It is thought for people that are actively involved in activism and event organising, and that wish to make this practice more accessible and inclusive.
The course consists of 5 video lessons that are accessible through our website without the need of previous registration. There will also be no tests or grading of any kind. Each video lesson will have subtitles in different languages and there will also be a downloadable PDF transcription of the entire contents of each lesson.
In the newly adjusted ESC online format, volunteers have put together a participatory virtual program for the time until we can meet again.
Join us this coming Friday as we share and discuss the kinds of care practices we are creating and shaping in and for our communities during these difficult times. Based on the context where systemic violence continously affects the ways in which we exist, we imagine a society that actively builds and maintains alternative structures of care. We would love to hear about the methods of care work you have organized in your respective communities and exchange ideas on ways we can support each other in sustainable ways.
The past year was a challenging year where we needed to reconsider and reshape the way we do and organize projects. In this spirit, we wanted to find a way to continue to support young volunteers as we have in the past with our ESC program. In light of the times, we decided to start our volunteering program for 2020/21 online with 3 young people from Ukraine and Belarus. This is a new experience for us, as we have never hosted an online volunteering service and we hope that it can still be as beneficial to our volunteers. Check our website for the info about great online activities run by our volunteers and who knows, maybe one day we will meet in person again?
The Skillshare Portal is an easy-to-access portal to resource guides and workshop modules that are made by and for activist groups across Europe in topics like consensus and facilitation , strategy / anti-oppression and direct action. There is an amazing amount of knowledge and skills in activist networks around the world and this website hopes to make these as accessible as possible. There are resources and modules in various languages and from diverse contexts.
A key principle in the creation and selection of materials for this toolkit is the use of an anti-oppression framework, based on a structural and historical approach. In Europe, much of the education (both formal and non-formal) about differences amongst people, discrimination and prejudice focus on the individual. It looks at the behaviour and attitudes of individual people, with the purpose of helping us to understand our differences and learn more about each other’s experiences and cultures. However, it tends to ignore or undervalue systems of power and long-term historical perspectives.
In creating this Toolkit, we wanted to explore how the concepts and ideas relate to a central-east European context (Bulgaria, Hungary and Romania in particular) and adapt them where required. Roma people and communities continue to experience widespread persecution and stigmatisation, a phenomenon which has been ingrained in European cultures for hundreds of years. Building awareness of the situation is not enough. Tolerance within individuals is not enough. We want to promote social change towards ending racism and Romaphobia!