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Welcome to Our February 21st 2020 E-Bulletin

Dates for Your Diary:
  • 20th March, 10.30am, Education Meeting, Zoom
What's In This Issue:
ILMI Team News

Leader Training

Photo depicts the text ILMI Leader Training Programme

Due to demand we will be rolling out our Leader Training Programme in Dublin during the month of March. If you are currently in receipt of or actively seeking a PAS and want to take part in this training please do let us know.
The aim of our Leader Training programme is to put us, as Leaders, back in control of our PAS by giving us the confidence to lead our service in an effective way. The programme is peer-led and delivered over a one-day session. The training is participatory in nature therefore we are limiting numbers that can take part in each session and only a few places remain for this first Dublin session of 2020. If you would like further information or want to reserve a place on this free training you can email Susan or contact her on 086 1712648. 

We are also still accepting names for individuals who would like to support the rollout of the Leader Training Programme during 2020. A panel of trainers is currently being established to support demand for programme rollout. If you are a Leader who has an interest in providing support to other aspiring Leaders through our Leader Training programme then do let us know. Please note that no previous training experience is required as full mandatory training will be provided for all interested trainers. To register your interest please contact Susan by email or on 0861712648.

Activism Course: Final Call for Expressions of Interest

Photo a cartoon image of clenched fists raised together in solidarity.

As part of our strategic plan, we are looking to build a network of disability activists across the country who share ILMI's vision and values and who can mentor other disabled people in representation roles.
Led and developed by ILMI ONSIDE coordinator Peter Kearns and based on Peter's extensive experience in adult education and mentoring, this course will be a mix of face-to-face sessions and Zoom mentoring over the course of 10 sessions.
Activists will learn about the social model of disability, the UNCRPD and its practical application, disability equality and human rights, key policy discussions, the equality and human rights infrastructure in Ireland, representation roles and the role of ILMI as a Disabled Person's Organisation (DPO).Training will be peer led and will feature inputs from a number of disabled activists.
ILMI will aim to support the activists on this course to engage on local and national structures and put their learning into practice. There will 8 workshops in total, with a delivered as mixture of face to face workshops in Dublin and via Zoom as well.
Expressions of interest for interested activists will be considered. Places are limited to 15 participants and by application only. Where numbers exceed 15, interviews will be held to choose the most suitable candidates. To apply, email with a short introduction to who you are, why you want to participate on this course, and what you would like to achieve from it.
Once participants have been selected, dates for workshops and course outline will be circulated.  

Disabled Activists Join Privilege the Musical

Photo shows Peter Kearns with some of the Privilege performers.

This week ILMI was invited to give a strong disability equality input into a new Irish musical named Privilege. The musical is casting performers, who will investigate and explore privilege from a personal standpoint and who will push the boundaries of the work to convey voices from marginalised groups who are not experiencing any sense of a so called economic recovery. ILMI's ONSIDE Coordinator Peter Kearns led an afternoon workshop on clarifying with the show's cast that disability is about Irish society's disabling barriers and not about portraying the usual staged personal tragedy story or 'Super-Crip' inspirational porn. 
The Dublin based musical will incorporate presentations such as ILMI's workshop and disabled performers’ experiences, as well as multiple thematic and political references, and will weave them into the content of the show. The cast includes disability arts dancer and activist Linda Fearon, a Northern Ireland colleague of ILMI's Peter Kearns. 
Louise White, the Musical's producer/Director, told Peter at the ILMI workshop that they have performers from various ethnic backgrounds, LGBTQ+ performers, professional disabled performers and working class actors. According to Louise, these performers have got lived experience dealing with White privilege, gendered oppression, 'Disablist & Ableist' stereotyping and Middle-class power relationships. Louise is interested in more work with ILMI to explore disabled activists lived experiences in a boundary pushing devised musical theatre show. The cast enjoyed the ILMI afternoon intro to disability equality activism and will make sure such social model lived experience narratives are included in the making of a new radical contemporary musical about privilege, inequality and collective denial.

NWCI Forum on Gender Equality

On February 4th Shelly Gaynor, ILMI Peer Mentoring worker, represented ILMI at the National Women’s Council of Ireland (NWCI) event on Citizen’s Assembly on Gender Equality. It was important to be part of this event to make sure that disability is on everyone’s agenda. During the workshops, Shelly spoke about PAS and the importance they make to a disabled person’s life and help how we can truly interact with society.
Shelly also spoke about the other barriers which we disabled people face every day such as transport employment etc. It will be important that ILMI members can participate in meetings like this to build solidarity and ensure that disabled women’s voices can be heard in work carried out by the NWCI.
NWCI are encouraging people and groups to make submissions to the Citizens Assembly. The deadline for submissions is the 6 March should you require any further assistance or information please do not hesitate to contact me on 
For more details on the public consultation on the Citizens Assembly on Gender Equality see here.


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New Sligo Leitrim Navigator

Photo shows ONSIDE Programme Coordinator Peter Kearns with new Sligo Leitrim Navigator Fiona Brennan.

ILMI is delighted to welcome Fiona Brennan to the ONSIDE team as the new Community Navigator for Sligo-Leitrim who took up her position in February 2020.
Fiona graduated from the University of Ulster in the early 1990s with a BA in Art and Design, following her third level education she spent over a decade working with Leeds City Council gaining skills and expertise in the area of community development and inner-city regeneration.
Since returning to Ireland in 2004, Fiona has worked in a vast range of community and voluntary organisations supporting disabled adults to access education, training and employment opportunities. Fiona is excited to join the ONSIDE project and the ILMI team, learn from the considerable expertise of the ONSIDE team and project participants and gain a deeper understanding of equality issues, particularly in the area of disability rights and social inclusion. To get in touch with Fiona contact her at

Assistive Technology

Photo shows ONSIDE team members with some of the Enable Ireland Assistive Technology Team

These days when it comes to writing a document most of us go straight to our smartphone, tablet or desktop computer. In the area of social inclusion support there are many advantages to using Information Technology (IT) for text production. ILMI Coordinator Peter Kearns and Enable Ireland's Siobhan Long organised a day trip for our ONSIDE Team and our partners in Northern Ireland to explore the role of Assistive Technology in improving disabled adults in the border counties to effectively engage in local social inclusion. 
According to Siobhan Assistive Technology (AT) can be described as "any device which enables individuals to complete or engage with tasks more easily". The ILMI ONSIDE Team of Community Navigators really engaged with the potential for participants to be aware of how much of AT is either 'free' or getting cheaper to purchase by the day as more companies provide accessible software on most new devices. 
After the engaging presentation by Siobhan and equipment workshop delivered by her staff team we will definitely be organising another ONSIDE field trip to visit Siobhan's Team and AT Dept. It's the beginning of a long-term relationship with a disability service provider staff team working, which are working from the social model and reflecting much of ILMI's values on effectively empowering disabled adults.


Photo shows participants at the ONSIDE training with Donegal PPN.

Peter Kearns from the Independent Living Movement of Ireland delivered Disability Equality Training on the 12th February in the Public Service Building in Letterkenny. This event was co-hosted by the Donegal Public Participation Network. This was an interactive workshop that focused on disability equality and disability rights within a social inclusion framework and within the context of wider sphere of human rights in Ireland.

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National Women's Council of Ireland: Call out to Women with Disabilities

The National Women's Council of Ireland are starting a project to reach out to women with disabilities. They want you to get involved to help them reflect your experiences better in all their work and campaigns for women's equality. They want to talk to and work with women with disabilities across the country to: challenge stereotypes and build leadership; ensure you are represented in their communications; ensure they are communicating in an accessible way; raise awareness of the issues you face; and support your participation in the womens movement.
They plan to talk to disability organisations and set up an advisory group that will support this project.
If you are interested and want to get involved please contact Catherine on 01 6790100 or email

Smashing Barriers

Ballyfermot Chapelizod Disability Action Collective established Smashing Barriers 'Drama Collective' in 2016 with the intention of creating performances demonstrating inequalities and barriers that the disability community face in their daily lives. To date they have written and two plays 'UnFair City' directed by Peter Kearns and 'Dead or Alive' directed by Kate Harris. Both plays where performed locally in Ballyfermot, Tallaght and Ballymun to packed audiences. 
They are opening our doors to invite disabled people, their families, carers and Personal Assistance to explore story telling through drama and theatre performances.  A Taster Workshop will take place on Thursday 5th March next at 11am. 
Although places are limited on this workshop they really want to hear from disabled people, their families, carers and Personal Assistance in the catchment area who have an interest in exploring disability issues through the arts.
If you require further information please contact 085-2277033 or email
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Center for Independent Living · Carmichael Centre · North Brunswick Street · Dublin, D D7 · Ireland

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