UK Disability History Month (UKDHM) started on Thursday 16 November and runs until Saturday 16 December.
Since it was established in 2010, the annual awareness campaign has created a platform to highlight the history of the struggle for equality and human rights.
The theme of this year’s campaign is ‘Disability, Children and Youth’. It will focus on how disabled young people have been treated in the past, how they are treated currently, and what is needed for the future. The theme was chosen to reflect 2023 being the Commonwealth member countries’ ‘Year of Youth’, a year dedicated to youth-led action for sustainable and inclusive development.
UKDHM aims to provide an opportunity for local authorities, service and education providers, youth, play and sports organisations, health providers and employers to examine how they support disabled children and young people.
Organisers are calling on individuals to challenge past portrayals of disabled people, and to create inclusive and non-stereotypical ways forward, in conjunction with disabled young people.
A launch took place on Thursday 16 November with an in-person event in Hamilton House in London that was streamed online via Zoom.
Speakers included Daniel Kebede, Linda Jordan, Ellen Goodey, Dr Miro Griffiths, Mette Westander, Suzanna Chen, Yewande Akinlelu-Omoniya, Jonathan Bryan, and UKDHM’s coordinator Richard Rieser.
As part of this year’s campaign, organisers have encouraged disabled young people to share their experience of being disabled in the UK as part of the ‘Exploration 2023’ project.
They encouraged submissions from individuals or groups aged up to 25 years, and entries could take any creative form, such as prose, poetry, artwork, film and signing. Excerpts from these contributions will be shared at the launch event and on the UKDHM website.
Visit the UKDHM website to find out more about the events and ways to get involved.