Rosemary Frazer, Campaigns Manager at Scope, explains how you’re changing young people’s attitudes towards disabled people.
“Disabled people can’t walk.”
“They can’t have children.”
“They get everything for free.”
This isn’t what I think, of course! And I know it isn’t what you think, either. But it’s what I’ve heard young people say in schools across the country.
Learning to understand
Perhaps it’s not surprising that young people think like this, when nearly half of people in the UK don’t know anyone who is disabled. There’s also a shortage of disabled role models in schools and a lack of knowledge about disability.
But you’re changing this
Your support has helped me and my colleagues set up a programme that sends disabled role models to schools and colleges. It’s a chance for young people to meet a disabled person and learn about their lives.
Time to question the stereotypes.
From the questions young people ask us, it’s clear that lots of them don’t understand the challenges and barriers disabled people face. And they often say they feel awkward around disabled people.
But by the end of the workshop, the change is remarkable. It’s great to see that young people are thinking differently thanks to you:
“Now I understand that people aren’t disabled until they’re challenged with something they can’t do.” – student at a school visited Scope’s Role Models programme.
You’re transforming the future
I always have young people come up to me and say thank you. So I’m passing on their thanks to you. Because it’s your kind support that makes these workshops possible.With your ongoing support you’re not changing attitudes, you’re changing the whole country. Because young people are the ones who can create a future where disabled people have the same opportunities as everyone else.
Thank you. You’re having a lasting impact on the lives of disabled people – once young people start thinking differently, they’re going to think that way forever.