The second learning session of the Enabling Change for Adults with Disabilities series took place on the 31st of January at Playeum. This event was co-organised by UNFRAMED and the National Council of Social Service (NCSS) to foster tri-sector collaboration and social innovation in the disability sector.
The event saw over 50 invited decision-makers from the public, private (both corporates & social enterprises) and people sectors such as the VP at Credit Suisse, Yale-NUS student co-founder of award-winning social enterprise VERE360, Directors at Thye Hua Kwan Moral Charities and gaming researchers at SUTD Game Lab and Keio-NUS CUTE Center come together to experience and explore new models of inclusive play for adults with disabilities.
“Many people with disabilities don’t enjoy going out ” Stephanie Tay, Assistant Manager, NCSS Pumpkin Lab mentioned while referencing a study carried out by NCSS on the Quality of Life of Adults with Mental Health Issues. “Persons with disabilities are 1.6 times more likely to have a lower quality of life if they are not participating in sports or recreational physical activities” she added while introducing the need for Inclusive Play.
To foster open conversations which would hopefully lead to more collaborations in supporting adults with disabilities all the participants were divided into 4 groups: Immersive Technology by Hiverlab, Neuro Tech, and Gaming by Neeuro, Play Space by Playeum and Photography and Arts by The Fat Farmer.
In each group, the participants were exposed to an initiative which has been working towards equalising the access to play. Yuan Yi, Founder of Hiverlab, showcased how Virtual Reality (VR) is being used for experiential learning in one of the groups. She shared how Hiverlab has been working with Movement for the Intellectually Disabled of Singapore (MINDS) to promote Inclusive Play and gave a demonstration which enabled the participants to learn how experiences like deep sea diving that seem unattainable to a person with disabilities can be shared through virtual reality. Alvin Chan, Co-Founder of Neeuro also gave his group a dose of experiential learning through assistive tech devices and wearables that act as alternative receptors. With such technology accessibility issues can be countered and it opens up avenues to a new dimension of social inclusion being introduced.
While discussing with her playgroup Esther Joosa, creative consultant at Playeum, also brought up an interesting yet important point that by repetitively using the word inclusive in every idea it is ironically very exclusive.” It should be made for everyone and not altered to fit everyone” she quoted. This led to discussions about how important universal design playgrounds are in breaking down segregation between children. These barriers being broken from childhood will lead to a more inclusive society in the future and will also aid in the development of empathy and EQ from a tender age.
It was also very heartening to see everyone passionately sharing their discussions and considerations that inspired their ideas towards the end of the event.
We hope all our participants found the event insightful and enriching in exploring the different ways inclusive initiatives could be implemented to promote equal play opportunities. We also look forward to hearing about future collaborations and innovations supporting adults with disabilities!
Stay tuned for the next learning session #3 of Enabling Change for Adults with Disabilities series Inclusive Community on 21st March 2019.
Enabling Change for Adults with Disabilities is a by-invitation-only series of events. Interested in joining us, collaborating & contributing your share to building a more inclusive society? Drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org