A few months ago, the VALID Moe Peer Action Group (PAG) decided they wanted to have their own radio show, and so they made a plan. The plan started with the big idea (the radio show) and then they worked out what they needed to do to make it come to life.
The Moe PAG decided that two important things were needed – a topic or event to talk about, and some radio skills. By sharing their ideas with other Peer Action Groups, they discovered Fantastic Flicks, a film event organised by VALID’s Peer Action Groups with the support of the Self Advocacy Resource Unit (SARU) and Start Community Art. They all agreed this was a great event to promote.
But how could they develop on-air radio skills? The group connected with the local radio station – Gippsland FM. So recently Gippsland FM began training the PAG members to develop their skills to produce radio shows. And the first ‘show’ has been pre-recorded. It is a session airing soon to promote the up-coming Fantastic Flicks film festival at the Moe Library on June 1st.
Ann Hutchinson is a Community Educator at VALID and is one of the driving forces behind the radio show with the Moe Peer Action Group. . It was through this project that Ann developed the confidence and resources to help bring this plan to life. “Learning how to speak on radio made me feel so nervous and so full of excitement all at once”, she said. “I’ve really enjoyed helping make community radio more accessible and inclusive for everyone”.
Ann and her group are also very pleased that through connecting with and working together with Gippsland FM, they will aim to develop a program that has potential to be used as a training model for community radio stations across Victoria.
Mainstream and Me is a national project coordinated by Inclusion Australia, which aims to educate the community on the challenges people with a disability face when accessing the community. It encourages people with different disabilities to work together with other people and mainstream services in the community, to make things more accessible and inclusive for everyone.
The Victorian VALID Mainstream and Me project has a focus on sport, recreation and leisure. Members of Inclusion Australia from other states are focussed on employment, accessible communities, and rights for parents with intellectual disability.
Fantastic Flicks is an event that which will screen short films by people with disability at the Moe library on 1 June. The Fantastic Flicks films capture the lived experience of disability across a range of contexts and explore love, relationships, politics and activism, work, everyday fears and hopes and a range of other issues associated with membership and participation in the community.
Mainstream and Me is funded by the NDIS through the Information, Linkages and Capacity Building (ILC) – ILC National Readiness Grants.