In Connecting Disability, accessibility reporter Meagan Gillmore and her guests consider how experiences of disability help us connect with others and society.
Connecting disability to… trying new things after a loss
On this first episode of Season 2, I am thrilled to introduce you to Heather Graham. After Heather was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis at age 46, she lost much of her mobility and active lifestyle. A few years ago, she decided to gain it back. Heather joins me from her residence in Calgary to talk about her journey with MS, what living in long-term care looks like before and during a pandemic, and what it means to control your disability.
Some resources Heather mentioned in this episode:
Direct MS: www.direct-ms.org
Wahls Diet: https://terrywahls.com/
Overcoming MS: https://overcomingms.org
These links are provided for your personal research. They do not constitute endorsements or medical advice.
Meagan’s previous reporting on younger adults living in long-term care: https://broadview.org/young-people-with-disabilities-long-term-care/
Connecting disability to… music and mentorship
We’re ending our FIRST YEAR of podcasting on a musical note!
W. Ian Walker has spent his life in music, whether by singing with various musical groups, working in arts administration, or now as a playwright. Ian joins Meagan to talk about turning his memoir, Stirring My Soul to Sing, into a play, how music has influenced his journey with ADHD, his experiences in the church, and the value of mentorship. Meagan reveals her answers to the questions, “Where is it hard for you to connect with your disability?” and, “What has good connection looked like for you?” We also hear about what happens when boy band fans enter middle age.
Learn more about Ian’s book Stirring My Soul to Sing: https://www.amazon.ca/Stirring-My-Soul-Sing-Overcoming-ebook/dp/B07H4WYH4X
Attention Deficit Disorder Association – http://add.org
Thank you to everyone who has listened and given feedback. You are very appreciated.
Connecting disability to… the outdoors
It’s hard to believe, but summer vacation is nearly half over. So, today we’re talking about the importance of getting outside.
Leona Mattice is an avid birder from Elliot Lake, Ont., who has spent years encouraging those with disabilities to explore the natural world around them. She joins us today to talk about how birding helped her through grief, brought her love and what birds can teach us about life with a disability. We also test her knowledge of bird calls.
Connecting Disability… to careers and that often-elusive first job
It’s graduation season, so we turn our focus to employment and job searching. Our guest is Jack McCormick, human resources manager at Microsoft. Jack chats about how his partial sight has impacted his job search and career, and why volunteering is so important.
And – congrats to the Class of 2022!
Connecting Disability to… the medical system
People with disabilities often use the medical system, but what happens when they want to become doctors? On this episode, Quinten Clarke gives us some insight into what the medical profession looks like as a medical resident who has a disability. Quinten is the vice-president and Trainee Group Lead for the Canadian Association of Physicians with Disabilities. Through this work, he advocates for medical learners with disabilities. He’s currently a resident physician at the University of British Columbia. He talked about how he thinks the medical system views disability, and how this can be changed.
You can learn more about the Canadian Association of Physicians with Disabilities here: capd.ca
Check out the Ostomy Canada Society here: ostomycanada.ca
Quinten mentions a February 2021 article by Dr. Lisa I. Iezzoni. Read more about that article here: https://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2021/02/survey-finds-doctors-have-negative-perception-of-patients-with-disability/. The full article can be accessed here: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8722582/
Connecting Disability… to life as a refugee
It’s been nearly two months since Russia invaded Ukraine. The ongoing war has had devastating impacts on the approximately 2.7 million Ukrainians who have disabilities. Tanya Herasymova knows this well. She’s the project manager of Fight for Right, an organization that advocates for human rights for Ukrainians with disabilities. Tanya joins us to talk about how the war has impacted her life, what it’s like being a refugee with a disability and what her biggest hopes are.
This is a very raw and honest conversation, and I’m so grateful that Tanya took the time to join us.
You can learn more about Fight for Right’s work here: https://ffr.org.ua/