I have come to seek advice around something that I am finding a struggle with. It is something that my work partners and I are trying to sharpen up on. However, we are finding it difficult to find the right words to try to both not offend but also be clear on our values, aspirations and visions we have for the people we are involved with.
We come into contact on a daily basis of Service staff, coordinators, support workers, sso workers etc.. Most of them being good hearted, well intentioned people who are trying best they know how to support someone who lives with a disability. Unfortunately, all too often they fall short on delivering on or even thinking about main stream inclusion for the people who they work for.
I am a network builder, that is my sole purpose or guideline that I work under. I am constanly in conversation with coordinators who are excited about having a Network builder involved in someeones life. They support what I do and talk about it in such a positive way. "We have so many people who could use what you offer" is something that is said constantly. However, in the same sentence they refer to the great "disability surf life saving club" that they are currently involved in starting up and talk about how great it is that they are doing something that is positive, community buliding and INCLUSIVE!!...... I just go tense and smile and cringe inside that I don't know what to say.. I feel like yelling and screaming that this is exactly what we are NOT about, that there should not be an US and THEM but a club that strives to include everyone no matter what a persons capabilites or barriers are. Of course I do not do that but am left feeling misunderstood and alone.
This is just an example but my question is how do I communicate clearly about my vision for the people I work with without discrediting their work and/ or understanding?
Communication is such a powerful tool. If I can get it right or just better, I'm sure I can work in a much more powerful and inspiring manner.
I look forward to your advice, comments and thoughts